New "standard workhorse" synth?

Just ran into a new addition to the Roland Cloud: Zenology.

They are trying to stuff a bit of every Roland Synth into one preset “rompler” - the sounds are surprisingly good! Very nice and expressive pianos.

I think I’ll wait until the “Pro” version comes later this year - this will allow editing, so I can remove some of the nastier processing and effects from some fundamentally nice sounds :wink:

But overall, this beast has the potential to be a good “default bread-n-butter synth”.

If you have a Roland Cloud subscription, this is included, so give it a try.




I love the idea of this having used a JV-1080 before I went in the box but the JV-1080 software is such a CPU hog it was unusable live for me…is this any better?

Unfortunately, no performance improvement here. I loaded up the S.A.E.P. preset on the JV-1080, the XV-5080 and the Zenology and did some full-range keyboard glissandi on each. The JV and the XV run at about 20% Cantabile load on my LiveCube, the Zenology reaches around 24%. It’s version 1.0.0, so maybe they’ll get it down to the level of the others, but I wouldn’t expect any major reductions in load.

For me, 20-24% isn’t prohibitive for live use, but I’ve definitely got “lighter” instruments in my arsenal, and I’d prefer those for complex and layered sounds. I use M1 and Xpand!2 for the bread-and-butter sounds and for layering, and Triton for more modern sounds. For the more prominent sounds, I use “specialists” like Addictive Keys, the AcousticSamples offerings, etc.

But if I had to pick a single plugin for stand-alone sounds (piano, e-piano, brass, strings, synth), the Zenology would be a strong contender - I could certainly run it live at 128 samples on my little cube.



I stopped using Cloud because I ended up with horrendous configuration issues due to my desire to put the VSTs in a different location and ended up with horrendous update issues that I couldn’t solve, so I gave up.

Yeah, Roland are pretty unflexible with their VST locations - bit of a nuisance, that…

Yeah, I contacted them to moan about that and they said they were passing it on to the dev team…

Not sure if they’ll change it but…


Funny thing is the installers allow you to change the location, so I did, and it all worked fine for a while, but it got completely futzed during one of the updates. Then I found their uninstaller left so much clutter on the hard drive and registry that I tried clearing out and reinstalling but no joy. After two weeks of effort to fix this on a off, I gave up on it as a lost cause and too drain on my time.

Maybe I will try again some time but I have plenty of great sounding soft synths to keep me busy so in no rush. If ever they did a JD800 clone or VP330 clone that would get my interest.

I’m finding Zenology crashes Cantabile a lot. I’ve just upgraded to the latest stable release in order to use the VST3 support but after a few minutes of browsing sounds on Zenology, everything just freezes up.

I’ve tried the other VST3 Roland cloud plugins and they work fine, anyone else have this issue?


I owned a couple of instruments from various developers over the years and always wanted to buy a roland instrument but than I sticked with my Kurzweil K2500 and some other devices.
The Zenology thing seems interesting at first but when I read on their website:
“Purchase a Lifetime Key and use your chosen instrument for as long as your Roland account is active—even if you’re not a paying member.”

Does it mean that I have to be online if I use an instrument with a lifetime key? Is it the lifetime of the company or the user?

I won’t do abonnements. If I buy an instrument I like to use it without internet connection.

And than there still is the question of cpu ressources, reliability, work flow and sound quality.

Whilst I was using the cloud, you just had to connect to the internet occasionally You could certainly use them off line

Thanks, Derek;
I’ll probably try it out some day and hope that “occassionally” is not during a show.

As long as you do a connection before a series of shows, I never had a problem. Can’t remember the time to next authorisation but it was at least weeks.