Synth Site: Roland: MC-09 Phraselab: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 3.2 out of 5
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Deadboy a hobbyist user from NY,USA writes:
Interesting little box. Not exactly the easiest tool in the bucket to use but useful to a budget muscian. I like the fact that it does double duty as a synth and effects processor. The audio looper part is the least useable feature. It's difficult to truncate your loops exactly the way you need'em and theres no envelope for the loops so when they cut off and restart at their loop point it's usually notacible. Haven't tried putting loops on the smartcards yet and editing them on the computer (roland has import/export software on their site)I'm getting a smartcard reader next week to try this out. You get 6 seconds of sample time but I have yet to figure out how to get all 6 seconds at whatever BPM to play. (roland says 80bpm) Usually it cuts off and cycles back when the sequnecer is at the end of the 2nd measure. Funny thing is when I play the sample off of the (sel) button I get the whole thing to play back. Makes no sense to me. What do I know? None's post is on the money about the 303 emulation. Sounds great for the masses. Only the asses will know it's not the real deal. The effects are mediocre 'cept for the Filter FX which is great for filtering your casio sk-1's signal. Isolator is an ok EQ style FX. Somewhat useful. Slicer is nice if you want to dice up your audio signal, cool for trancey technoish stuff. It works like the gapper-snipper plugin in Acid. Phaser's not bad either but I own a pedal for that so I'll probably never use it on an external audio. The Mc-09 suffers from it's inability to run more than one of the operations at a time. When it's a synth you can't use FX (though the synth part has some weak built in FX that can be turned on or off)It's either synth/audiolooper or FX/audiolooper running at the same time. You can still mix external audio with whatevers running. Kinda nice cause it goes easy on your mixer. Only has RCA in and out. Sux cause I have to use an adapter for all the 1/4 inch ins and outs that I have. I suppose it's set up like that for price and the fact that it's marketed towards the DJ/hobbiest crowd. I give it an overall 3 1/2 for it's flexibility. Fun but not for the serious. Picked it up for $200 on sale at Samash. Reminds me of alot of oldschool 80s gear. You have to exercise alittle creativity in it's use. Fine by me since I use alot of cantakerous gear. BTW Manual FUCKING SUCKS!

Rating: 2 out of 5 posted Thursday-May-08-2003 at 22:58
mik a hobbyist user writes:
Well, i dont own it, but the designer of this thing must be completely gay. It looks as if it came out of a chewing-gum-machine.

no vote

posted Sunday-May-04-2003 at 16:09
the va synth is ok,bleep synth and thinny acid bass...but the weakest point is the internal mix function,the result is terrible,no need to say sampling,it totally sucks,even worse than the bad sp505(even 505 got good lcd).why roland still produces such craps always??v-synth is not a good sounding fake-analog synth even it wanna be a good analog(va),yes,i know they tried their best to emulate old sounds and input more new and valuable functions(realtime variphrase,etcetc),but its not worth the price to get those show-off functions w/ some so-so digital sounding fake analog sounds,just another expensive toy.and back to mc09,its a crap too,not expensive,but a cheap crap,really cheap,cheap price cheap sound cheap function,enough said.

Rating: 1 out of 5 posted Sunday-May-04-2003 at 15:00
Dr.EM a hobbyist user from England writes:
This machine IS good. It does take a long time to realise it's full potential. Had mine since october, still discovering stuff. The sounds can be varied greatly if you take the time to read the manual right through. You can change filter types, VCO waveforms (lot's of them including de-tuned ones) LFO waveforms and LFO modulation, filter sustain, amp sustain etc. It is possible to create hundreds of easily useable sounds from this box, and then save them to removeable media. A bit of an arse is the fact that to save/load a long loop can take 3 mins and another nag is that the sampler can be noisy and have a lo-fi sound to it. Unfortunately, there are no strings on this, but there are really great bass and lead sounds to be discovered. Take the time to learn it and it is much better than what you may think at first...

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Sunday-May-04-2003 at 12:11
none a part-time user from none writes:
I can't believe more people aren't up on this machine! It does a VERY faithful TB303 (I have two real ones + a FR777).

The sequencer is the shit - has both the slide and accent per step. Yes, it may be limited for other things but if you want a awesome bass looper this is great.

I actually refused to look at this machine for months in the music store because... I don't know... it just seemed like it would be crap. Then one day I tried it out and damn!

There are also a lot of other wave forms (120 or so) for trancy leads, distored leads, etc.

But for me it is just great to have a nice 303 box with the sequencer (the MOST important part to get the sound right!).

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Monday-Mar-31-2003 at 14:48
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