Roland JX-8P

Roland JX-8P Image

The JX-8P is a decent analog polysynth. It has 6 voices of polyphony, great MIDI implementation and patch storage as well as an external memory cartridge slot. Though it is far more advanced than its predecessor, the JX-3P, the JX-8P has its drawbacks. Hands-on programming is sacrificed and reduced to assigning the parameter you want to tweak to a data-slider near the pitch/mod bender. Enter the PG-800 controller which gives you total control of all the JX-8P's editable parameters with hands-on traditional slider control. Membrane buttons dominate the front panel of the JX-8P providing access to the various preset and user patches and to page through and assign editable parameters.

Professional features can still be found under the hood of the JX-8P. Its 61 note keyboard is velocity and aftertouch sensitive. Just like the Juno synthesizers it uses DCO's for a very stable system, however its sounds are a little thin and bright. It also features portamento, unsion and solo (monosynth) performance modes. It is used by Biosphere, 808 State, Tangerine Dream, The Shamen, Depeche Mode, Überzone, the Cure, Go West, Ozric Tentacles, Future Sound of London, Jean-Michel Jarre, Europe, and Jimmy Jam.

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141 Visitor comments
JX-8P Editor
March 12, 2014 @ 4:53 pm
If you want to turn a Peavey PC1600X MIDI controller into a PG-800 (and more), check this out:
Buddy Mack
March 12, 2014 @ 12:49 pm
My first analog synth. As analogs go, I'm told that it's not the cream of the crop, but it was hardly a bad deal for the price: $430 for a fully functional 8P with hard case. The 80's calculator-style screen is especially awesome.

The main thing that emerged for me almost immediately after playing this is that after 20 years of playing digital synths, including supposedly similar LA-type synths such as the D-50 and XP-50, I am never going back, as there just is no comparison. Press a key, and the JX-8P purrs and mews; it's *alive*. I simply never had that happen with digital synths.
February 24, 2014 @ 7:08 pm
I had this one for a couple of weeks. There is a sonic difference between the white buttons and the grey buttons units, something to do with the op-amps make the white buttons ones better sounding, but not warm imho. Anyway, it's a good synth but nothing special, it's very digital, too thin and dated sound even after creating new sounds from scratch... the filter and overall sound it's not too different from virtual synths and without the modulation capabilities of software... after comparing it with 'budget' analog synths like the Oberheim Matrix 1000 or Roland JX-3P I sold it right away...
February 10, 2014 @ 4:54 pm
Warm and smooth, with more bass and fullness than the JX-3P in my ears. Capable of a wide variety of sounds, and quite expressive. Nothing harsh or screetchy here. With a wide "sweet spot", it is hard to make it sound bad. Very fast and easy to program with the PG-800.
February 9, 2014 @ 4:32 am
GREAT synth. The pg-800 is definitely NOT a must have, just get the iPG-800 for a fraction of the price. Does the same thing. Have fun!
VSE Rating


User Rating

Rated 4.3 (998 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 6 voices
  • Oscillators - 2 DCO's per voice (12 oscillators)
  • Memory - 64 patches + External memory cartridges
  • Effects - Portamento
  • VCF - standard VCF
  • VCA - ADSR envelope
  • Arpeg/Seq - None
  • Keyboard - 61 note keyboard with velocity and aftertouch
  • Control - MIDI In/Out/thru
  • Date Produced - 1985
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