Roland MC-707 Groovebox

Any music gear discussions that don't fit into one of the other forums.

Moderators: luketeaford, Joe., lisa, Kent

Post Reply
User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Mon Sep 09, 2019 9:12 am

It’s not trolling, and I’ve never taken to the somewhat flat sounding Elektron output.

However you can plock pretty much any parameter which the Roland can’t, the build quality is tons better than Roland, the sampling editing is more immediate and the oled screens are just way better.

But at the end of the day, that pales almost into insignificance now , the Roland does stereo, output always sounds nice, and it is a ton deeper editing wise now.

If it works like it’s advertised , then the Roland is the better machine hands down , unless you need external midi sequencing.
But that’s the 707 the 101 it isn’t so clear cut because that doesn’t sample.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

User avatar
anselmi
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 4158
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:08 pm
Location: Montevideo

Post by anselmi » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:34 pm

h4ndcrafted wrote:It’s not trolling, and I’ve never taken to the somewhat flat sounding Elektron output.
by "flat" you mean the audio quality?

well, it depends of which elektron...the Octatrack is flat, the Digitakt is gorgeous, raw, in your face
However you can plock pretty much any parameter which the Roland can’t, the build quality is tons better than Roland, the sampling editing is more immediate and the oled screens are just way better.
yes
But at the end of the day, that pales almost into insignificance now , the Roland does stereo, output always sounds nice, and it is a ton deeper editing wise now.
yes
If it works like it’s advertised , then the Roland is the better machine hands down , unless you need external midi sequencing.
my only concern is the workflow...old grooveboxes are really tedious and uninspiring in use

the digitakt could be limited and some stuff of it are unforgivable (like the lack of proper backup and stereo samples) but the workflow is one of the best I ever tried in a machine like this...man this thing is soooo inspiring

I think the 707 could fail in this department, but well, maybe it´s me...some people can live with the Octatrack and others like to be whipped and called Martha, so I think that it will have a big fan base nevertheless

But that’s the 707 the 101 it isn’t so clear cut because that doesn’t sample.
by reading the (small, shitty, sketchy) manual I can´t tell what´s possible and what´s not...it seems that all of the edition that makes the 707 so great in features is missing in the 101 :despair:

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Wed Sep 25, 2019 4:01 pm

Well from watching more videos , the 707 doesn’t sample either, only from a computer via the soundcard.

:despair:

Seems you can only loop record and timestretch is always on :roll:

You can load loop into the synth engine , but the start and end points effect that sample even if you duplicate it. However other parameters are treated individually.

Sounds like Roland needs to work on this a bit more for some, I’d likely be happy as is, but I’m not paying the current asking price.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

User avatar
rustedimac
Common Wiggler
Posts: 91
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:08 pm
Location: Stamford, CT
Contact:

Post by rustedimac » Wed Sep 25, 2019 5:20 pm

h4ndcrafted wrote:Well from watching more videos , the 707 doesn’t sample either, only from a computer via the soundcard.
yes it can. maybe you should read more instead of watching videos :miley:
kwontifiedsound.com

User avatar
rustedimac
Common Wiggler
Posts: 91
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:08 pm
Location: Stamford, CT
Contact:

Post by rustedimac » Wed Sep 25, 2019 5:23 pm

Even better, it can record both line and mic level in whopping 32bit/96khz. Imagine all the stretchings you can do with a 96khz samples
kwontifiedsound.com

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Fri Sep 27, 2019 3:46 am

rustedimac wrote:
h4ndcrafted wrote:Well from watching more videos , the 707 doesn’t sample either, only from a computer via the soundcard.
yes it can. maybe you should read more instead of watching videos :miley:

What page does it say it samples ? It records loops that are timestretched.

You can select loops for other projects, but with limitations. Maybe it’s in a different section though, the manual isn’t as bad as people say it is imo.

It even refers to it as ‘looping’ rather than sampling, although you can ‘load loops/samples’ which obviously isn’t sampling.

At least when comparing it to pretty much every sampler out there.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

Panason
is banned
is banned
Posts: 3324
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2018 7:56 am

Post by Panason » Fri Sep 27, 2019 4:39 am

There is a "proper" reference manual now, apparently. Mixed reports on GS.

Mr. Sound Boy King
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 280
Joined: Sun May 17, 2009 4:16 pm
Location: Ellensburg, WA

Re: Roland MC-707 Groovebox

Post by Mr. Sound Boy King » Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:14 am

Tajnost wrote: Is it a new MPC / Ableton / Deluge / Octatrack killer or not really?
One cannot kill what has never lived. However, these questions pose an interesting threat nonetheless...

MPC: One does not kill the MPC with this neon fuck. MPC is for the old school hip-hop Wu-Tang RZA and the like. This thing cannot kill that vibe (to me). However, it has a new school twang and I could see 707 used to make country music or state fair music...

Ableton: False positive. Whereas Ableton is a computer, 707 is a box. If we compare the firmware, the Ableton has more to recommend it. Simply put, no one can kill the "ghost in the shell," Motoko Kusanagi. The protagonist of the film remains Ableton.

Deluge: How many Deluge even exist in this world? I bet already more 707s exist. One cannot kill microscopic by stepping on it or unloading a ton of bricks on it. Therefore, the niche is safe from 707 in this instance.

Octatrack: Another false positive. One wishes to "kill" Elektron for some reason... Many have this opinion (not myself). I find the fact that Octatrack actually makes no sound on its own (try this and you will see it needs "samples") makes another false positive here. One cannot kill the silence which lurks deep within the Octatrack whereas the 707 can die if its internal boards get wet or fried...

To conclude, nothing kills anything and everyone could own all the equipment and still produce garbage. You see this every day. In fact, one can own the equipment and produce nothing at all...

User avatar
Cedrik Ha
Learning to Wiggle
Posts: 22
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2017 4:43 am
Location: Stuttgart, Germany

Post by Cedrik Ha » Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:41 am

Will definitely take a closer look at the mc-707 in the future. Time will tell how much potential this machine has to offer.

Maybe it's a great companion to my digitakt.

Gyroscope
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 438
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2015 2:27 pm
Location: In the North

Post by Gyroscope » Fri Sep 27, 2019 7:50 am

h4ndcrafted wrote:
rustedimac wrote:
h4ndcrafted wrote:Well from watching more videos , the 707 doesn’t sample either, only from a computer via the soundcard.
yes it can. maybe you should read more instead of watching videos :miley:

What page does it say it samples ? It records loops that are timestretched.

You can select loops for other projects, but with limitations. Maybe it’s in a different section though, the manual isn’t as bad as people say it is imo.

It even refers to it as ‘looping’ rather than sampling, although you can ‘load loops/samples’ which obviously isn’t sampling.

At least when comparing it to pretty much every sampler out there.
I've read that it can sample but you're limited to 60 seconds total. Wow :doh:

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Fri Sep 27, 2019 12:05 pm

It’s 60 secs per clip

Available total time for User Sample: 12 minutes in mono, 6 minutes in stereo (44.1 kHz)
* Available format of User Sample: WAV 32–96 kHz/16-bit, 24-bit (mono, stereo)

* Available total time for Looper Sample: Approx. 60 sec (44.1 kHz)
* Available format of Looper Sample: WAV 44.1 kHz/16-bit, 24-bit, 32-bit, 32-bit float (mono, stereo)


Nice to see the re201 algorithm in there , also their Juno chorus is a new one to me.
Last edited by h4ndcrafted on Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

Panason
is banned
is banned
Posts: 3324
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2018 7:56 am

Post by Panason » Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:43 pm

Why are some people so concerned about sampling in hardware in 2019?
Are they thinking about DJing?
One wishes to "kill" Elektron for some reason...
For many reasons actually. :hihi:

Daisy

Post by Daisy » Sun Sep 29, 2019 4:02 am

[video][/video]

A short guide on using Step Advance to create arpeggios and adjust the fx and release etc and play direction for the arp.

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Sun Sep 29, 2019 9:44 am

Panason wrote:Why are some people so concerned about sampling in hardware in 2019?
Are they thinking about djing
Well it’s a few less steps , but it clearly is ment to be. A looper, so I’m not bothered. If it was a sampler I’d miss a powered Jack for a condenser mic.

Then again I think only reads a max of 500 samples on the card , or per project , I’m not sure.

One bummer is there is no folder structure, they all sit at top level. Fun to scroll through :doh: so I’m guessing it’s 500 per card.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

User avatar
spruce999
Common Wiggler
Posts: 79
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:22 pm

Post by spruce999 » Sun Sep 29, 2019 2:35 pm

How much memory do you have for the loops per project? Is the memory shared with one-shot samples? 60s per loop is fine but 60s in total for all loops per project would be not enough for me. This device looks very promising and could be a nice addition to the modular system for playing live.

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Sun Sep 29, 2019 10:39 pm

spruce999 wrote:How much memory do you have for the loops per project? Is the memory shared with one-shot samples? 60s per loop is fine but 60s in total for all loops per project would be not enough for me. This device looks very promising and could be a nice addition to the modular system for playing live.
Specs say 60s total time, although in the manual it says 60 secs per clip. So a bit confused

‘The length of samples that can be handled by a looper clip is from one second to 60 seconds.
Use your computer to edit the Wav file to this length, and execute the operation again’

That’s in the error message section, from that I’d infer it’s 60sec per clip. 60 secs total per project would be a huge deal breaker for me.

Sample time per project is 12 mins mono , 6 mins stereo at 44.1.

500 sample total per card/instance
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

Gyroscope
Wiggling with Experience
Posts: 438
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2015 2:27 pm
Location: In the North

Post by Gyroscope » Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:21 am

h4ndcrafted wrote:
spruce999 wrote:How much memory do you have for the loops per project? Is the memory shared with one-shot samples? 60s per loop is fine but 60s in total for all loops per project would be not enough for me. This device looks very promising and could be a nice addition to the modular system for playing live.
Specs say 60s total time, although in the manual it says 60 secs per clip. So a bit confused

‘The length of samples that can be handled by a looper clip is from one second to 60 seconds.
Use your computer to edit the Wav file to this length, and execute the operation again’

That’s in the error message section, from that I’d infer it’s 60sec per clip. 60 secs total per project would be a huge deal breaker for me.

Sample time per project is 12 mins mono , 6 mins stereo at 44.1.

500 sample total per card/instance
I don't know man. I haven't read the manual but from what I understood it was 60 seconds total. I was going to grab it until I read this. This is the thing I read on Gearslutz:

"No. I loaded a 16bit 44.1khz 32 second stereo track into the first track and it worked fine. When I tried to load the second loop (diff name same file) I got the error "Abort! Not enough contiguous memory"

From page 59 of the manual: "It might be that the internal memory has been fragmented. Execute “Optimizing the Internal Memory (LOOPER OPTIMIZE)” (p. 55).
If the same error occurs even after optimizing, delete unneeded looper clips from the project."

So looks like you get 60 seconds of stereo looping for all clips combined. You can have more than one clip on a track, of course.

150bpm = ~38 bars across all looper clips

120bpm = ~30 bars across all looper clips

90bpm = ~22 bars across all looper clips

60bpm = ~16 bars across all looper clips

Honestly that is a huge amount of recording time for looped based music (at least for one song)

If you need more than this wouldn't you just need to use a DAW?"

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:57 am

Yes it seems 60s total for project. For loop based production , I rethought this , and this is enough, especially with various modes for the VA and drum and inst tracks. I.e. play modes, probability and automation. Different instances for each clip too, save if it uses the looper, I think that’s right ?

I think the actual parameters you can automate via the three knobs is pretty sad tbh, some aren’t even very useful. I was expecting to be able to pick parameters from the effects as well, but it’s just main sends , env and pitch and amp modulation.

A huge meh there.

The most interesting thing to me is the VA and sample import at this point.


Also although the routing suggests it, there doesn’t seem to be any info on routing through the effects without recording, just as an effect box. Although this may just be a case of which point you send out, did I read it right ? You can actually send post master effects ?
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

User avatar
Neo
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 911
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 2:22 am
Location: Bogota

Post by Neo » Mon Sep 30, 2019 4:56 pm

Pretty huge limitation is no multisampling, and no velocity switching of samples. You can kindof get around botrh of these limitations a bit by assigning a different sample to each of the 4 partials and then setting a keyboard and/or velocity range for each partial. So forget even mildly realistic pianos, strings etc. Deluge wins again

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Mon Sep 30, 2019 5:47 pm

I’d look at a deluge , but I like the effects library on Roland’s.

I’m not sure multisampling is that important on a groove box is it ? Yr better off getting a fantom or modx that both have pattern sequencer and automation.

I’m not sold on the looper tracks , you can’t do much with them imo.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

User avatar
Neo
Ultra Wiggler
Posts: 911
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2011 2:22 am
Location: Bogota

Post by Neo » Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:25 pm

I would hope that a new product from a company with serious R&D clout could at least match the capabilities of similar products already in the market. The new MPC's can do multisampling, and of course the Deluge does it too. Even if one were trying to do classic deep house, it would be ridiculous to have to carry around a workstation keyboard to get a Korg M1 piano sound in 2019. The hardware is abviously capable. And since there are so many sample libraries around now it seems like a huge oversight to be living with the limitations of 20 year old tech. And how about allowing for things that the groove boxes of the last 3 decades *can't* do? That might be useful.

While on the subject, aonther ridiculous limitation is not streaming samples from the SD card. Then the meager sample memory wouldn't be an issue and the 707 could be used like Ableton on stage without a laptop. Wouldn't that be nice.

If I was in the market for a groove box I think I'd go for the Deluge and put the spare $100 towards an H9

Still I don't want to sound negative about Roland's recent efforts.. they have at least finally brought us the new analog 808 that we asked for... the wonderful RD-8 :hide:

User avatar
chaocrator
Common Wiggler
Posts: 143
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2019 9:21 am
Location: Kyiv, Ukraine

Post by chaocrator » Tue Oct 01, 2019 12:15 am

h4ndcrafted wrote:I’m not sure multisampling is that important on a groove box is it ?
just two words: Command Station.
E-Mu engineers knew how to do sample-based stuff right. and yes, quite a lot of instruments in E-Mu ROMs are multisampled.

Daisy

Post by Daisy » Tue Oct 01, 2019 1:29 am

[video][/video]

I put this together in the early hours of the morning.

It shows basic midi control of the MC-101's 4 Tracks via Logic X midi.

All the percussion samples can be selected on the drum track by changing note on the piano roll to get the required sound.

I wasn't able to record any modulation onto the midi track, so not sure if it's possible or I just haven't sussed it yet :despair:

User avatar
h4ndcrafted
Super Deluxe Wiggler
Posts: 3955
Joined: Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:27 pm

Post by h4ndcrafted » Tue Oct 01, 2019 4:11 am

Neo wrote:I would hope that a new product from a company with serious R&D clout could at least match the capabilities of similar products already in the market. The new MPC's can do multisampling, and of course the Deluge does it too. Even if one were trying to do classic deep house, it would be ridiculous to have to carry around a workstation keyboard to get a Korg M1 piano sound in 2019. The hardware is abviously capable. And since there are so many sample libraries around now it seems like a huge oversight to be living with the limitations of 20 year old tech. And how about allowing for things that the groove boxes of the last 3 decades *can't* do? That might be useful.

While on the subject, aonther ridiculous limitation is not streaming samples from the SD card. Then the meager sample memory wouldn't be an issue and the 707 could be used like Ableton on stage without a laptop. Wouldn't that be nice.

If I was in the market for a groove box I think I'd go for the Deluge and put the spare $100 towards an H9

Still I don't want to sound negative about Roland's recent efforts.. they have at least finally brought us the new analog 808 that we asked for... the wonderful RD-8 :hide:
I agree with a lot of that , but people will buy them for the simple reason they are fun. That functionality you describe comes at the cost of a more convoluted process.

The new synth seems great, it would be easy to say they are trading off long in the tooth romper tech, but this does let you do a lot of up to date stuff.
But next to the comp it is overpriced.
We don't want to conquer space at all. We want to expand Earth endlessly. We don't want other worlds; we want a mirror.

Panason
is banned
is banned
Posts: 3324
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2018 7:56 am

Post by Panason » Tue Oct 01, 2019 4:26 am

Then the meager sample memory wouldn't be an issue and the 707 could be used like Ableton on stage without a laptop
The complaints about sample time remind me of the situation with the SP-16 and I really wonder what people are looking for and why they don't use an actual DJ machine instead if they want to play back large audio files. Most of them these days have more than enough bells and whistles.

Grooveboxes were never meant to be like Ableton.... they are for laying down tracks from scratch, not DJing or doing remixes. The sample capability is so that you can incorporate short samples in your tracks such as drum hits and short musical phrases...

Post Reply

Return to “General Gear”