Roland Super JX-10

Roland JX 10 Image

Released in 1985 the JX-10 (Super JX) combines two individual JX-8P's for an outstandingly warm, rich and analog sound which is still used in many modern studios all over the world. This synth was the first Roland Synth to be fitted with a quality 76 note keyboard with velocity and aftertouch. Two DCO's per voice, two ADSR envelope generators per voice, and a resonant lowpass & non-resonant highpass filters are only the beginning. It has a 12 voice polyphony for a total of 24 oscillators and it is by far one of the most programmable synths of its time! However, as on the JX-8P, knobs and sliders have been replaced by low-profile buttons and a nice LCD display. Although this may look sleek and elegant, it makes editing a chore. Assign parameters to the alpha dial for tweaking, one at a time, or get the optional PG-800 Programmer to provide traditional, hands-on, dedicated sliders for editing the JX-10's parameters.

The JX10 has a Chorus effect and a chase-play Delay function. The chase-play function allows programmable delayed repeats of voices by alternating patches of the upper and lower modules. The simple chorus effect is either off, slow or fast. It has two programmable sliders (if you don't use the PG-800) for some real-time control which can be recorded along with other effects and keyboard modes into one of the 64 Program Patches. This is in addition to its standard 50 preset and 50 user patch memory. A simple sketch-pad 1-track real-time sequencer is also on-board. It stores sequence data directly to an M16C card, or an M64C card for Patch/Tone OR sequence data. The M16C has a capacity of 400 notes, the M64C 1440, according to the manual.

The JX-10 also comes in a rack-mount version known as the MKS-70. It's worth noting that the JX-10 can not be edited via SysEx, however the MKS-70 can which is one reason many have chosen the rack version over the keyboard. The JX-10 can make bulk dumps of its sounds over sysex, but only with (discontinued) Roland M64C RAM cartridges. The JX-10 has been used by Jane Child, Pink Floyd, Duran Duran, Angelo Badalamenti, Yellow Jackets and The Cure.

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91 Visitor comments
Vic
June 27, 2010 @ 7:31 pm
I have 2 Super JX-10's and a MKS-70. The MKS 70 is not thinner at all, it has more clarity in the top end. If you dial back on the top end there is basically no difference in tone or phatness of the rack with it's keyboard brothers. Both versions are super underrated analog monsters that can sound like many other synths (a big big plus)!!!!!
Vic
June 27, 2010 @ 7:29 pm
I have 2 Super JX-10's and a MKS-70. The MKS 70 is not thinner at all, it has more clarity in the top end. If you dial back on the top end there is basically no difference in tone or phatness of the rack with it's keyboard brothers. Both versions are super underrated analog monsters that can sound like many other synths (a big big plus)!!!!!
JRC4558
June 10, 2010 @ 11:39 pm
@Jx

The internet seems to put the more 'sterile' sound of the JX-10 down to M5218L opamps used in some specific places that the 8P uses cheaper 4558s (like the mixer section etc.). Replacing the M5218Ls used in these specific spots with 4558s would be VERY easy for someone with basic soldering & schematic reading skills (particularly if you used SIL packaged 4558s so no breakout board was required).

That said, it seems pretty counter productive considering how poor the 4558 is considered by some for audio uses. I suspect the extra 'warmth' people hear in the 8P is just nonlinear distortion added by these opamps- the tone generation circuits are basically identical.

The JX-10 definately does have it's flaws, but I'd say that's the reason it's so undervalued in the marketplace. Learn to live with its quirks and it's a very rewarding piece of gear to own.

Also, both the MKS-70 and JX-10 use the alpha dial.
jx
June 8, 2010 @ 5:45 am
Note these comment is not to rile JX10 owners but to warn potential buyers that just because this synth has 2 boards in it and a lot of keys doesn't particularly make it a no brainer "upgrade" from an 8P. Part of a synths usefulness and enjoyment is in it working how you expect, and integrating into your studio. For that 8P, 3P and MKS70 are all nicer to work with than JX10 I'm afraid.

Add on the fact that MANY people (pros and net pundits alike) rate the 8P's overall warmth/tone over the mks70/jx10 and you really owe it to yourself to check 8P first.
jx
June 8, 2010 @ 5:44 am
quote "The MIDI is crap on the JX-10, it barely works. Sadly the JX-10 is not the full ticket, with some glaring flaws.. although capable of some very nice sounds it's certainly not an upgrade to the much better designed JX-8P"

Also alpha wheel is RSI inducing (spin spin spin for little effect), It's oversized for it's use, it's MIDI LATENCY (even with eprom upgrade) makes it far from useful in a studio environment.

In short, IF you are considering a JX10 you would be very wise to consider the rack version (MKS70) FIRST - or even a JX-8P which is a much nicer hands on synth with only ONE known problem (aftertouch) which is an easy fix anyway.
 
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  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 12 voices
  • Oscillators - 2 DCO's per voice (24 oscillators)
  • Effects - Portamento, chorus, chase-play
  • Memory - 50 preset, 50 user patches, 64 Program Patches, External memory cartridges
  • VCF - One resonant low pass and one non-resonant hi pass filter (which can be used simultaneously)
  • VCA - 2 ADSR envelope generators per voice
  • Arpeg/Seq - 1-track real-time sequencer, 400 note memory (M-32 card), 800 note memory (M-64 card)
  • Keyboard - 76 key keyboard with velocity and aftertouch
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1986
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from yousenditworks eBay Store.

    Thanks to Ecky Zudrop, JC CUTZ and Matthew Bassett for providing information.

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