Roland Juno DS61 Review – A Lightweight and Powerful Synthesizer

The Roland Juno DS61

Roland Corporation was founded in 1972, and since then, they have made a name for themselves by producing some of the highest quality synthesizers in the world. They are known for being one of the most prominent companies in the history of electronic music.

Thanks to their commitment to making durable and powerful synthesizers, they have fans of all genres and abilities. Their Juno DS61 is no exception and offers all of the same incredible quality and value as their other equipment.

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roland juno ds61 review – a lightweight and powerful synthesizer

What Is the Roland Juno DS61?

The Roland Juno DS61 has been on the market for a few years now and is marketed as being a lightweight option that is perfect for bands to take on the road. While this is true, that’s not all that the Juno DS61 is, as it is also a very powerful synthesizer that offers plenty of control over sound quality and tone.

All of Roland’s Juno synthesizers are designed to be incredibly mobile and powerful, but still to offer the control that you come to expect from Roland equipment. The iconic series has been around for a while now, and the Juno DS61 is simply an updated synthesizer that is known for being intuitive and versatile.

Who Is this Synthesizer Designed For?

Roland wanted the Juno DS61 to be a great option for all musicians, from weekend hobbyists to pros who are regularly on the road. The usability of the Roland Juno DS61 is one of the things that sets it apart from other synthesizers, including ones in the Juno line. It is so lightweight that it is perfect for taking on the road and can easily be enjoyed by musicians of all ages.

Because the Roland Juno DS61 really excels at enhancing live music, it is best on the stage, but it also sounds great in practice and when recording. The power and control that it offers make it a great instrument in any band, including in a praise band. Churches who are able to invest in their musical equipment will find that the Roland Juno DS61 offers exceptional control and features that set it apart from other similar synthesizers.

What’s Included?

The Roland Juno DS61 ships by itself. To make the most out of using this powerful synthesizer, musicians will want to have all of the cables necessary to connect it to amps, a computer with powerful music software, and headphones. Additionally, a microphone is necessary for the musician who wants to be able to sing and include their vocals in their music.

Since the Roland Juno DS61 runs on batteries, musicians don’t have to worry about having a power cord or access to an outlet, which is great for practicing on the road. This does mean that musicians need to keep fresh batteries with them at all times.

Primary Features of the Roland Juno DS61

The instant-access design of the Juno DS61 really is exceptional, and it is a feature that makes this a great option for beginning musicians. By using this design feature, musicians can instantly recall their favorite sounds, which is great for use in live performances. Other wonderful features include:

  • Includes pro sounds
  • Battery-powered operation
  • 61-note keyboard with weighted action
  • Wave expansion slot to download new sound waveforms
  • Hands-on sliders and knobs for easy sound editing and manipulation
  • 8 phrase pads
  • 8-track pattern sequencer
  • DAW control mode
  • USB audio/MIDI

The supported internal waveform expansion allows musicians to access unlimited tonal range. There are more than 1000 EXP sounds available for download at the Roland Axial website, and since they are all free, all musicians can enjoy access to world instruments, piano collections, percussion, studio standards, loops, and even more.

The 8 phrase pads on the Roland Juno DS61 make it possible to supplement performances with music files or samples that are stored on a USB. It’s easy to load up the pads with any loops, effects, samples, vocals, or complete tracks and access them with just one touch.

The mic input makes it easy to enjoy great vocals without bringing extra gear on the road. Additionally, the Roland Juno DS61 features vocal reverb, auto pitch, and a vocoder.

Musicians who are interested in recording will appreciate being able to control their music software from the front panel of the Roland Juno DS61 and the integrated USB interface. It’s easy to record audio data and MIDI data and then to mix and edit songs for something new and different.

Alternatives to the Juno DS61

The Roland Juno DS61 is a great synthesizer for most musicians, but if you are looking for something that offers more power, then you will want to consider the Korg PA700 as an alternative. This is another 61-key synthesizer, but it boasts a large and responsive touch screen, as well as a 2 x 25W speaker system, and 370+ music styles. The higher price tag can put this out of reach for some musicians, but advanced musicians looking for more power and control will want to check it out.

Another great alternative is the Korg PA600 bundle. Not only will you enjoy a powerful synthesizer that offers all of the control that you have come to love from a great synthesizer, but this bundle ships with headphones, a sustain pedal, bench, and stand. This makes it a great option for beginners who are just getting started with a synthesizer and are in need of all of the accessories.

Conclusion – Should You Consider this Synth?

Roland JUNO-DS 61-Key Lightweight Synth-Action Keyboard with Pro Sounds

The Roland Juno DS61 is an impressive synthesizer that is packed with great features and is also surprisingly easy to use, making it a great option for any musician who has an interest in using a synthesizer and who has the budget necessary to buy great equipment.

All of the features listed above more than justify the cost of the Juno DS61 and make it a viable choice for most musicians. Beginners will be able to enjoy playing the Roland Juno DS61, but they may not get the most use or experience the most control simply due to a lack of experience. More advanced musicians will be able to perfect their tone and style with the Roland Juno DS61, making it a wonderful option for intermediate and advanced musicians, as well as beginners who are particularly dedicated to their music.