Roland System 100m

Roland System 100m Image

The System 100m is Roland's contribution to professional analog modular synthesis. It was based on the more limited, semi-modular System 100, but is several steps of ahead of its predecessor. The System 100m offers over 20 modular components to pick and choose to design a custom modular set-up. The Main unit is the M-110 which has a single VCO oscillator, VCF, and VCA section. You can then build upon this system adding any number and configurations of the various other modules which include dual VCOs, ring modulators, dual VCFs, eq, dual VCAs, dual envelopes, LFOs, various effects, mixers, sequencers, and control interfaces including 3 different keyboard controllers.

Roland System 100m Image

Modules are assembled into racks. The System 100m has 3 rack sizes, the M-190 holds 3 modules, the M-191 and M-191J hold 5 modules. Each rack provides the necessary 8-pin DIN power connectors and internal CV/gate connections between the modules. You still need to do some external patching, however, to send your signal through the modules of your choice to create any sounds. As for sounds, the System is basically monophonic, unless you get several racks of them for lots and lots of money! Its sound is not as warm as the System 100 before it, but it offers much more capability, as seen in Hans Zimmer's system below!

Modules Description
110 VCO single oscillator (with VCA and VCF sections)
111 VCO/VCF (unreleased prototype)
112 dual VCO, with 3 CV ins, 2 outs, and weak/strong sync
120 VCA (unreleased prototype)
121 dual VCF, with low-pass and high-pass filters with 24 dB/oct slope
130 dual VCA, with a linear/exponential switch
131 Mixer, 4 X 2 X 1, with panning and a tuning oscillator (220/440/880Hz)
132 dual Mixer and Voltage Processor
140 dual Envelope (ADSR, invertable, and manual gate button) and LFO (5 waveforms with switchable range: x1, x1/10)
141 dual Envelope, Gate Delay, and Invert/Adder
150 Ring Mod, Noise (pink and white), S&H (with lag), and LFO (5 waveforms with switchable range: x1, x1/10)
160 Computer Interface
165 Double Portamento Controller, with CV in
170 Pitch/Voltage Converter, Envelope Follower, and Audio Amp
172 Phase Shifter, Audio Delay, LFO, Gate Delay
173 Quadruple Signal Gate and six 4-way Multiples
174 Parametric Equalizer, four-band, with 20Hz to 20kHz center frequencies
180 Keyboard, 32-note (F-C) low note priority, with transpose switch and portamento knob
181 Keyboard, 49-note (C-C) same as 180 but with added portamento switch and bender lever (with CV out)
182 Analog Sequencer, 2 X 8 step, serial or parallel modes
184 Keyboard, 49-note (C-C) 4-voice, with switchable mono/polyphonic, an arpeggiator, and polyphonic portamento
190 three-module rack with connection sockets at the base
190B base unit that elevates the 190 above a keyboard
191 five-module rack
191J five-module rack with multiple connectors on its base
Roland System 100m Image

Hans Zimmer's massive System 100m, image and info courtesy of Kevin Lightner. "It features 58 VCOs, 37 VCFs, 32 ENVs, 12 VC Phase shifters, 9 Sequencers, 1 Remote controlled 4-space rack-mount power supply (25' away.), and 24 Trunk lines go to his large Moog synth across the room. The unit can link the "Keyboard" inputs for all the modules, and with this feature, all VCO's can track one input with only one patch cord. The unit was built into 6 flight cases on casters with removable front and rear covers, then later encased in wood and built into his studio. "----Kevin Lightner

System 100's have been used by Orbital, Hans Zimmer, Vince Clarke, Depeche Mode, Heaven 17, Freddy Fresh, Luke Vibert, Meat Beat Manifesto, Electronic Dream Planet, Jamiroquai, Human League, and Peter Howell of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.

Lookup Roland System 100m Prices

The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings with more images, specs and information. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace. Our marketplace gets thousands of visits every week so make sure to check back often if you want to buy or sell a synth.

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Roland System 100m? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

13 Visitor comments
Buchla200
May 9, 2014 @ 9:00 am
One of the best. No, not fat like a vintage Moog etc (although not at all thin if you get your levels right) but much funkier and easier to use. Classic Roland sound and extremely powerful for a small system. Great design in the rack where your keyboard voltages and gate are routed to the main places you want them..
I actually find them cheap compared to some of the eurorack crap that is out there and the good eurorack stuff is more expensive.
80smiami
April 29, 2013 @ 2:03 am
Used by Alphaville to create the bass for "Big in Japan".
Dan
May 16, 2012 @ 3:04 am
To s r dhain

You are right there so many synths out there that sound fatter..but they don't have
anything unique soundwise they all sound like each other. What the 100M has IS CHARACTER! Meaning that they have a UNIQUE timbre, sound...So, if you love the
sound of the 100M you don't buy anything else...If Vince Clark swears by them then who are you to differ? So shut it!
Dan
May 16, 2012 @ 3:00 am
And the videos featured by Vintage synth are [beep] e...watch this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Swi2fNeNCuE
and this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAvPPj_Sy6c&feature=relmfu

Ryk also did a perfect reproduction of the 182 sequencer with 16 steps, I bought the only one he ever did from him then sold it to a german guy... BIIIIIG MISTAKE! :-(
Dan
May 16, 2012 @ 2:55 am
For Ianski,

You are one of those wankers who never touched this instrument and claim to know
that it has a tiny sound...Watch my videos on the links page of my site redoutput in the next month or so (my studio is being wired up as we speak) and tell me which bit is tiny sounding. And hey, I also have the Digisound 80s VCOs and a multimode filter, plys SH-5, Moog Source, System 100, etc, etc...so I KNOW what is fat sounding and what is not! I have 4 VCOs and the same number of VCFs, VCA,s EG and LFOs plus Ryk's 185 sequencer!
 
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  • 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 - Monophonic
  • Oscillators - 1 or 2 oscillators per module:
    M-110 VCO single oscillator (with VCA and VCF sections)
    M-112 dual VCO, with 3 CV ins, 2 outs, and weak/strong sync
    M-150 Ring Mod, Noise (pink and white), S&H (with lag), and LFO (5 waveforms with switchable range: x1, x1/10)
  • Filter -
    M-110 VCF (with VCO and VCA)
    M-121 dual VCF, with low-pass and high-pass filters with 24 dB/oct slope
    M-174 Parametric Equalizer, four-band, with 20Hz to 20kHz center frequencies
  • VCA -
    M-110 VCA (with VCO and VCF)
    M-130 dual VCA, with a linear/exponential switch
    M-140 dual Envelope (ADSR, invertable, and manual gate button) and LFO (5 waveforms with switchable range: x1, x1/10)
    M-141 dual Envelope, Gate Delay, and Invert/Adder
  • Keyboard -
    M-180 Keyboard, 32-note (F-C) low note priority, with transpose switch and portamento knob
    M-181 Keyboard, 49-note (C-C) same as M-180 but with added portamento switch and bender lever (with CV out)
    M-184 Keyboard, 49-note (C-C) 4-voice, with switchable mono/polyphonic, an arpeggiator, and polyphonic portamento
  • Arpeg/Seq - M-182 Analog Sequencer, 2 X 8 step, serial or parallel modes
  • Effects -
    M-170 Pitch/Voltage Converter, Envelope Follower, and Audio Amp
    M-172 Phase Shifter, Audio Delay, LFO, Gate Delay
  • Misc. -
    M-131 Mixer, 4 X 2 X 1, with panning and a tuning oscillator (220/440/880Hz)
    M-132 dual Mixer and Voltage Processor
    M-190 three-module rack with connection sockets at the base
    M-190B base unit that elevates the 190 above a keyboard
    M-191 five-module rack
    M-191J five-module rack with multiple connectors on its base
  • Control - CV / Gate:
    M-160 Computer Interface
    M-165 Double Portamento Controller, with CV in
    M-173 Quadruple Signal Gate and six 4-way Multiples
  • Date Produced - 1979 - 1984

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