Roland FANTOM-08 88 Key Synthesizer

FANTOM-08

$ 2,899.99

In stock

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4.9 (357)

Video Overview
🎹 Roland FANTOM-08 88-Key Synthesizer Keyboard Comprehensive Review & Demo 2024 🎹
Product Descrption

Product Overview

Since the company began in the early 1970s, Roland has paved its way to becoming one of the giants of the digital piano industry on an unparalleled commitment to innovation. Simply put, Roland has reshaped what musicians all over the world perceive to be possible with a digital instrument. Roland’s top-of-the-line workstation line, the FANTOM series, is a shining example of this. These self-contained workstation models are capable of accomplishing virtually any musical goal you can imagine.

While the flagship FANTOM series is undeniably one of the best workstation lines ever released, its high price point puts its models out of reach for consumers on a tight budget. Nevertheless, this didn’t stop Roland from coming up with an innovative solution to the problem via the FANTOM-0 series. This revolutionary new product line from Roland offers the same core technology as the FANTOM series in a more streamlined and cost-effective package. While the FANTOM-0 models have less DSP power, less memory, and some cutbacks in terms of the onboard instruments, namely the Juno-106, Jupiter-8, SH-101 and JX-8P, it provides users with the same core technology, intuitive workflow, and creative power of the FANTOM line.

The FANTOM-08 is the top-of-the-line model for this series. Although all three of the models in this series (FANTOM-06, FANTOM-07, and FANTOM-08) have the same technology, control interface, and I/O offering, the FANTOM-08 is set apart from its smaller siblings by its action. The inclusion of Roland’s tried, tested, and true PHA-4 action in the FANTOM-08 means that players are getting a workstation with a fully-weighted 88-note digital piano keyboard. So, whether you need an instrument to practice classical piano repertoire on at home or a gig-worthy synthesizer for the stage, the FANTOM-08 is prepared for any musical situation you throw at it.

The PHA-4 action might be the distinguishing feature on the FANTOM-08, but it is still important to comment on the extensive sonic offering Roland has included on these FANTOM-0 models. Every single model in the line comes equipped with the ZEN-Core, SuperNATURAL Acoustic, SuperNATURAL Acoustic Piano, SuperNATURAL Electric Piano, and VTW Organ engines. This collection gives you over 3500 sounds to explore your creativity with. From authentic sounding grand pianos and tone wheel organs to some of the most iconic synths and electric pianos, the FANTOM-08 has virtually any instrument sound imaginable.

The best part about this cost-effective 88-note workstation is that it can seamlessly integrate with any setup. The extensive I/O options ensure that you can use the FANTOM-08 in conjunction with nearly any piece of hardware or software. With that said, the fact that FANTOM-08 has a built-in sampler, pattern sequencer, vocoder, and much more, you can also work exclusively within the workstation itself. 

 

Action

While many workstations prioritize features and functionality at the expense of the core playing experience, namely the action, the FANTOM-08 does not. This top-of-the-line model uses Roland’s highly-regarded PHA-4 action. This is the same fully-weighted 88-note action that Roland has trusted for a wide variety of their portable, console, and stage digital pianos. There is a good reason for this; it is reliable and durable.

The PHA-4 action provides a heavier weighted touch and an ivory key texture, which is ideal for players that are seeking a proper piano feel. The presence of escapement gives a heightened sense of connectivity to the instrument and greater control when playing extremely soft dynamics. To supplement these features, the presence of triple sensors in the PHA-4 action ensures that every nuance and detail of a player’s performance and expressions is captured and rendered. 

Ultimately, this is the main feature that separates the Roland FANTOM-08 from its smaller siblings, which use a synth-action. Furthermore, the fact that the FANTOM-08 has a full 88-note range means that there are no limitations to the type of repertoire you perform on it. This highly-responsive action is more-than-equipped to handle even high-level classical playing. The only setback here is that the 88-note fully-weighted touch means that the FANTOM-08 is considerably larger and heavier than the other models in the line. 

 

Sound Engine

What Roland has been able to pack into the FANTOM-0 models on the tone engine front is mindblowing. There are five individual tone engines present with the capability of adding more through expansions. With that said, the FANTOM-08 includes Roland’s ZEN-Core, SuperNATURAL Acoustic, SuperNATURAL Acoustic Piano, SuperNATURAL Electric Piano, and VTW Organ engines. The culmination of these five fantastic engines is an unparalleled library of sounds.

While the fact that the FANTOM-08 has over 3500 sounds, including over 90 drum sets, is impressive in its own right, the fidelity and quality of these sounds is really what sets this workstation apart from others. Whether you are exploring classic synth tones, seeking an inspiring grand piano, or looking for realistic acoustic instrument sounds, the FANTOM-08 has any sound you could ever need. The creative possibilities are virtually endless.

It has to be said that the ZEN-Core engine is the centrepiece of the Roland FANTOM-08. The customization and flexibility this technologically-advanced sound engine offers is staggering. Even more impressively, the ZEN-Core engine allows users to further expand the onboard library of sounds via the Roland Cloud and share sounds between other ZEN-Core compatible instruments. If there was ever a workstation that you would want to have in the case that you were stranded on a desert island, it would be the FANTOM-08. I suppose not having a power source may be an issue, but we’ll tackle that consideration another time.

 

Connectivity

Don’t be fooled by its modest price point. The Roland FANTOM-08 is a true-blue professional level workstation. As such, it is fully-loaded with input and output connectivity options. This means that the FANTOM-08 can be used in any practice, performance, or production setting you may find yourself in. The Roland FANTOM-08 is designed to be your companion on stage, in the studio, and at home.

More specifically, the FANTOM-08 features a ¼” headphone jack, ¼” MAIN OUT jacks (L/MONO, R), ¼” SUB OUT jacks (L/MONO, R), stereo mini SUB OUT STEREO (PHONES) jacks, ¼” MIC INPUT jack, ¼” LINE INPUT jacks (L/MONO, R), FOOT PEDAL jacks (HOLD, CTRL 1, CTRL 2), MIDI jacks (IN, OUT), USB MEMORY port, and USB COMPUTER port (audio/MIDI). What more could you ask for really?

 

Notable Features

Given that the FANTOM-08 shares the vast majority of its features and technology with the FANTOM-06 and FANTOM-07 models, the most notable feature on this flagship model has to be the PHA-4 action. The feel and touch of the keyboard is not an afterthought with this workstation. The fully-weighted 88-note PHA-4 action is one of Roland’s most revered actions of all-time. It is the perfect blend of durability and performance. This feature will be of particular importance for anyone looking to play high-level classical and jazz piano on the instrument. While the inclusion of this action comes at the expense of added weight, the FANTOM-08 is still more than light enough to be portable.

 

  • PHA-4 action with fully-weighted 88-note keyboard, escapement, and Ivory Feel
  • ZEN-Core tone engine with Roland Cloud access and ability to import/export ZEN-Core sounds
  • SuperNATURAL Acoustic tone engine
  • SuperNATURAL Acoustic Piano tone engine
  • SuperNATURAL Electric Piano tone engine
  • VTW Organ (only ZONE2), which faithfully emulates the sound-generation process of a real tone wheel organ
  • EXZ Series, EXSN Series, and EXM Series expansion
  • 3500+ onboard tones, including 90” drum sets
  • Tone Search/Scene Search by rating/character
  • Extensive arsenal of Effects (Multi-Effects: 16 systems, 90 types, Part EQ: 16 systems, Drum Part COMP: 6 systems, Insertion Effect: 2 systems, 90 types [Serial/Parallel connection selectable], TFX: 1 system, 90 types, Input MFX: 1 system, 90 types, Chorus: 9 types, Reverb: 7 types, Master Compressor, Input Reverb: 7 types, Input EQ: 1 system)
  • Onboard Vocoder
  • Pattern Sequencer with up to 64 measure pattern lengths
  • SMF Player (Format 0/1)
  • Onboard Sampler with Keyboard Multisample and Pad Sampler
  • 5.5” Colour Touch Screen with backlite LCD
  • Extensive Connectivity options to accommodate virtually any musical situation
  • Audio Interface (Max 24 bit/96 KHz, Record 16 Stereo Channel, Playback 2 Stereo Channel)
  • Rhythm Pattern, Arpeggiator, Chord Memory, Motional Pad, and more

Conclusion

With the FANTOM-08, Roland has impressively managed to combine most of the technology and functionality of the premium FANTOM-8 model with affordability. Despite being a bit more streamlined than its older sibling, the FANTOM-08 is without a doubt a professional-quality workstation that any player should be proud to play on stage or in the studio. Given that the FANTOM-08 is nearly half the weight of the FANTOM-8, there will be many players opting for the more affordable 08 model specifically for its portability.

Roland has made a habit of revolutionizing the digital instrument industry and it is quite clear to see that they have done it again with their latest offerings to the world of workstations. The FANTOM-06, FANTOM-07, and FANTOM-08 all have their intended purpose and audience, but the FANTOM-08 will unquestionably be the main attraction for players seeking the best playing experience and optimum versatility. Simply put, Roland’s FANTOM-08 is a force to be reckoned with. Regardless of the playing situation, its extensive functionality makes it worth consideration. 

 


 

KEYBOARD

Keyboard

88 Keys (PHA-4 Standard Keyboard: with Escapement and Ivory Feel)


 

SOUND GENERATOR

Tone

ZEN-Core

SuperNATURAL Acoustic

SuperNATURAL Acoustic Piano (EXSN01/03 Preload)

SuperNATURAL Electric Piano (EXSN02 Preload)

VTW Organ (Only ZONE2)

Various MODEL sound generators (Require adding EXM Series)

 

* ZEN-Core Tones and Model Tones can import and export.

* Backup file has compatibility with FANTOM-6/7/8, but it can read the enabled features only.

 

Expansion

EXZ Series

EXSN Series

EXM Series

 

* The expansion are rewritable internal sound generator memory.

You can download data from the Roland Cloud and write it via a USB flash drive into the FANTOM’s internal memory.

 

Parts

16 zones (Internal + External)

Scenes

128 scenes x 4 bank

 

* The Scenes can import and export.

Tones

3,500 tones or greater

90 Drum kits or greater

Tone Remain

8 zones

* When “Scene Remain Switch” enabled.

Tone Remain does not apply to VTW Organ sounds.

Favorite

Rating System: 4 steps (0-3)

Tone Search/Scene Search

Rating, Character

Effects

Multi-Effects: 16 systems, 90 types

Part EQ: 16 systems

Drum Part COMP: 6 systems

Insertion Effect: 2 systems, 90 types (Serial/Parallel connection selectable)

TFX: 1 system, 90 types

Input MFX: 1 system, 90 types

 

Chorus: 9 types

Reverb: 7 types

Master Compressor

Input Reverb: 7 types

Input EQ: 1 system

Vocoder

Band: 13, 20, 32

Type: Mono, Stereo

Preset Setting: 10

User Setting: 20

Scene Chain

Chain: 16 Scenes x 32 Pages (Total 512 Scenes) per 1 Chain set

Set: 100

Marker: 36 (0-9, A-Z, a-z) per 1 Chain Set


 

PATTERN SEQUENCER

MIDI Tracks

16

Group

16

Pattern

8 (per each track)

Pattern Length

64 measures

Recording Method

Realtime recording, Step recording, TR-REC

Editing Method

Piano roll edit (Touch Edit/Automation support), Microscope

Song

1 (per Scene)

File format

Original, SMF export/import supported

 

* PAD Sampler trigger data can be recorded.


 

SMF PLAYER

Format

SMF (Format 0/1)

MIDI tracks

16

Tempo range

5-300 BPM

Transpose function

-5-+6 semitone

Track Mute

Yes

Track Solo

Yes

A/B loop function

Yes

 

* The pattern sequencer and SMF player can be used in each scene.

They cannot be used at the same time.


 

SAMPLER – KEYBOARD MULTISAMPLE

Format

16/24-bit linear, 44.1/48 kHz, WAV/AIFF import supported.

Number of Samples

2,048

Number of Multisamples

128

Sampling Time

The maximum is 2 minutes 44 seconds (1 Sample).

 

* A total of approximately 256 MB (Share with Expansion titles)

* Keyboard Multisample can import and export as ZEN-Core Tone.


 

SAMPLER – PAD SAMPLER

Format

16/24-bit linear, 44.1/48 kHz, WAV/AIFF import supported

Maximum Polyphony

8

Number of Samples

16 pads x 4 banks

Sampling Time

The maximum is 60 minutes (the equivalent of approximately 660 MB).

 

* A total of approximately 2 GB (including imported WAV files)

* When you use the PAD samples as KBD Wave, then you have to manipulate it.


 

SAMPLER – INTERNAL STORAGE SPACE FOR FILES

Size

2 GB


 

OTHERS

Rhythm Pattern

Yes

Arpeggiator

Yes

Chord Memory

Yes

Motional Pad

Yes

PAD Mode

Sample Pad,Note Pad,Partial Sw/Sel,DAW Control,Zone Mute,Zone Solo,Kbd Sw Group,Rhythm Pattern,Pattern,Variation Play,Group Play

AIRA LINK

* When connect to MX-1

Controllers

Pitch Bend/Modulation lever *1

Assignable Switch x 2 (S1/S2)

Control knob x 8

Slider x 8

Wheel x 2 *1

Function knob x 6

Sound Modified knob x 2 *1

4 x 4 Pad

 

*1: 1,024 step editing support

It can be used with Cutoff, Resonance.

Display

Graphic Type, 5.5″ (1,280 x 720 dots), backlite LCD (Color/Touch screen, Screensaver, Wallpaper support)

Connectors

Headphones jack: Stereo 1/4-inch phone type

MAIN OUT jacks (L/MONO, R) (1/4-inch TRS type)

SUB OUT jacks (L/MONO, R) (1/4-inch phone type)

SUB OUT STEREO (PHONES) jacks: Stereo miniature phone type PHONES Support

Mic Input jacks: 1/4 inch TRS type

Line Input jacks: (L/MONO,R) (1/4 inch phone type)

FOOT PEDAL jacks(HOLD, CTRL1, CTRL2)

MIDI connectors (IN, OUT)

USB MEMORY port

USB COMPUTER port (AUDIO/MIDI)

External Device Port: A Roland A-49 or an A-PRO series MIDI Controller can be connected. * Operation is not guaranteed if a generic MIDI device is connected.

Audio Interface

Max 24 bit/96 KHz

Record 16 Stereo Channel

Playback 2 Stereo Channel

External Memory

USB Flash drive (sold separately)

Power Supply

AC Adaptor

Power Consumption

1,300 mAh

Accessories

Owner’s Manual

AC adaptor

Options (sold separately)

Keyboard Stand:

KS-G8B, KS-10Z, KS-12, KS-20X

Pedal Switch: DP series, RPU-3

Expression Pedal: EV-5

USB Flash drive


 

SIZE AND WEIGHT

Width

1,393 mm

54-7/8 inches

Depth

354 mm

13-15/16 inches

Height

138 mm

5-7/16 inches

Weight

14.8 kg

32 lbs 11 oz

 

 

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