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Roland RD-2000 RD-2000

4.75 4.75 out of 5, based on 2 Reviews

Roland's news "Stage Piano" is a mixed bag.


4th May 2017

by Chromalord

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.5

Im one of the 1st owners, and its so new, there are no upgrades or libraries available at the site printed in their manual, which BTW, is printed in 8 languages.

Looks:
Very sleek, full88-keys, decent-sized display window is easy to read. While there is a lot of software under the hood its pretty intuitive and the layout is very logical. The 8-assignable controls have Euphonix-type rotary LEDS. The unit is not very deep but its thicker than average, and weighs close to 49 pounds. The build is very solid and polished. Metal Q-dial is easy to grip.

Hook up:
Its has balanced XLR outputs as well as (4) TS unbalance outs. One stereo mini input.
MIDI: i/o/tX2, USB device and USB memory ports. Hook-up ports for their triple damper pedal, variable pedals and foot switch.There is another port with a removable USB plug that is labeled "for updates"

Navigating: Basic usage
Roland has always been a "hierarchy-based company. So the "Tones" are its stored patches. You layer those tone to create a "Program". You either play the program as is or you can layer it with another program to create a "Scene".
Its a breeze to layer sounds instantly, and zone/split them independently if you wish, and apply a wide range of very hi-rez effects to them, even amp modelling. There are 4 tiers of 8 parameters which again, is a very easy interface. The operating system in general is way hipper than the Kronos, which obviously some portions of this unit is modeled after. One can easily alter many aspects of the sounds right from the surface controls: levels, panning, filters, envelopes, effects sends etc. There are two programmable wheels, and a pitch bend/modulation level.

Sounds:
Roland advertises this as a stage piano. Its not. Its a utility keyboard that just happens to have great piano sounds. There are over 1100 tones ( all very well organized) and out of that 68 are piano. You decide for yourself.It also has vintage PCM pianos as well as beautiful dyno-electric pianos. The clavs were a bit disappointing as they are distorted- nearly all of them, and there are many. The strings sound like a slightly better version than the ones in their Integra-7. Beautiful vocal tones, choirs, and jazz syllables. Brass stacks are super punchy, but most of the solo horns are lacking. Plenty of very nice and usable bass sounds ( acoustic, electric and synth) although the fretless is better on the Jupiter-80 and Integra. The organs are very usable, although the Leslie modeler is crap. There are huge amounts of pads- yet most of them are of the 80's analog-variety. There is not much in the way of FM-style sounds or wave-table sounds. What there are too many of is terrible guitar sounds which I cannot imagine anyone using. There some cool motion-synth sounds and sound FX too. The D-2000 comes with about 20 drum kits- some of the samples are quite nice AND there are stored beats in the unit. Everything can be edited and stored. The Pianos are supposedly from the V-piano and offers most of the editing parameters from that unit. Their tones are rich and detailed, each note can be custom tuned. My only complaint is the decay which IMO is slightly long on every piano tone. The keyboard action is superb- weighted but fast, rapid fire works on the same note, the release has no mushy recovery, its very crisp.

Summary:
My impression is that this is every bit as much of a touring keyboard as it is a stage piano. Its main selling point is its super fidelity and easy stacking of tones, The pianos have full polyphony and the other rompler portion has 128 voices. You can get beautiful results nearly instantly and they record very well. The FX while not as deep and plentiful as the Kronos, are still excellent.There are some bugs: the aforementioned distorted clavs, the unit went into echo mode on every tone so I had to depress their "ONE-TOUCH-PIANO button which is seemingly their version of a "panic-button" ( I was not editing FX when this occurred) and the worst thing is the high mixer volume of most of the tones which overloads the master volume bus. For my personal use, its a dedicated hardware piano in the studio, That will free-up the Piano and Rhodes duties of my Kronos, which the RD-2000 is superior. It would have been nice to have a poly arpeggiator. When you consider the features, the full keyboard, the expansion add-ons, and the fidelity, the RD-2000 is a winner and a good value at its street-price of $2,350

  • 1
18th August 2018

by spottingjonah

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 5

The Roland RD-2000 is exactly what a modern stage piano should be.

At first glance, it is well made with Roland's "built like a tank" build quality often seen in their flagship pro gear. Plenty of metal, along with their new weighted keys. There isn't anything I've played quite like the feel of these keys next to a real grand... just amazing.

It comes loaded with Roland's V-Piano technology, which can sound pretty amazing when you take the time to tweak it to your liking. My first run through the V-Piano left me wanting more... not a lot of bite - almost dull sounding. But after some serious editing I got exactly what I like out of a nice bright grand piano. Be sure to play through some nice speakers or headphones to appreciate the full compliment.

It also includes the typical suite of Roland sounds found in most of their gear for the past 20 years... nothing too special, but plenty of meat and potatoes to get the job done. The added bonus the two EXP expansion slots to add more sounds. Initially the Axial site featured more piano sounds for the RD-2000 (Not my idea of proper utilization), but recently started adding more expansions including vintage synth sounds. EXP-06 is actually pretty amazing for this board.

The DAW features I can't speak to as I don't use this controller for that reason, but I've seen it in action and it's an impressing function for those using this as a DAW controller. From a MIDI controller perspective, this is everything my A-90EX was, and then everything it tried to be. Minus a few extra MIDI Out ports (I guess I'm the only one with a MIDI rig these days, huh?) and it does the RD series and the A-90 proud.

Ultimately, it's a great board, and the centerpiece of my rig.

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