Roland has announced the FA-06 and FA-08 Music Workstations, two new keyboard instruments designed for "intuitive operation and complete expressive freedom in any musical environment". Featuring a huge selection of Roland's best sounds, a 16-track sequencer, seamless DAW integration, an easy-to-use sampler, and much more, Roland say the new FA series "completely reimagines the music workstation for effortless real-time power, ultra-fast workflow, and maximum versatility".
The FA-06 includes a 61-note velocity-sensitive keyboard, while the FA-08 is equipped with an 88-note Ivory Feel-G Keyboard that provides weighted-action performance derived from Roland's high-end pianos. Beyond their keyboard types, the FA-06 and FA-08 offer identical feature sets.
Simple yet powerful, the 16-track sequencer in the FA series has been designed for capturing ideas and creating songs quickly. It's easy to build full arrangements with the workstation's vast array of sounds, and continuous recording in loop mode allows users to fill up all 16 tracks without stopping the sequencer. Song tracks can be edited, mixed, and bounced to an SDHC card as a stereo audio file, and it's also possible to export tracks as individual WAV audio files or MIDI data for further development in a computer-based DAW.
With the dedicated DAW Control button, players can instantly set up the FA-06/FA-08 to communicate with their computer via USB and use the keyboard, knobs, and buttons to send MIDI data to their DAW for playing software synths, controlling plug-ins, operating transport functions, and more. The FA series also functions as a USB audio interface, with high-quality audio capture and playback via the workstation's rear-panel audio jacks.
Included in the FA-06/FA-08 is a collection of over 2000 tones inherited from the INTEGRA-7, Roland's flagship pro sound module. All of the INTEGRA-7's SuperNATURAL synth and XV-5080 PCM tones are on board, plus an essential collection of ultra-expressive SuperNATURAL acoustic tones. The sound engine is compatible with free INTEGRA-7 synth tone downloads available from Roland's Axial sound library site, and the internal sound set can be extended with optional FA-series wave sound expansion collections.
The FA series features a performance sampler based on Roland's popular SP-404SX, offering hands-on operation with 16 velocity-sensitive pads and sampling/playback via SDHC cards. Users can sample external sources connected to the rear-panel Mic/Guitar and Line inputs, and internal sounds can be captured as well. Samples load instantly, and a variety of friendly editing functions are included. WAV, AIFF, or MP3 audio transferred from a computer can also be used with the sampler.
The FA-06 and FA-08 both offer a wide selection of studio-quality onboard effects. Independent MFX engines (each with 67 effects types) are available for all 16 parts of a Studio Set, providing an enormous amount of processing power for both live playing and song mixing. Six separate COMP+EQ processors are dedicated for individual drum sounds, while global EQ, chorus, and reverb are included as well. With the unique TFX (total effects), users have the ability to process the entire output with dramatic effects such as DJ FX Looper, Isolator, and many others.
Both models in the FA series feature a large, hi-res color LCD and a panel that's organized into logical sections for instinctive operation. It's simple to navigate through the immense sound library, and dedicated buttons provide instant access to often-used functions such as transpose, octave range, and many others. With the Sound Modify section, users can control a wide range of parameters in real time via six knobs and an easy-to-use assignment matrix.
UK pre-order pricing is £829.00 / £1,299.00.