New "standard workhorse" synth?


#1

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.

Cheers,

Torsten


#2

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?


#3

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.

Cheers,

Torsten


#4

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.


#5

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


#6

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…

P


#7

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.


#8

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?

P


#9

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.


#10

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


#11

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


#12

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.