Hot off the digital presses, the Roland SPD One range was announced this morning. Featuring four products – the Roland SPD One Electro, SPD One Percussion, SDP One Kick and SPD One Wav, these single pad beauties can be used on the floor, a tabletop, or mount to your drum hardware and can be powered by batteries or AC adapter, making the SPD One easy to fit into your setup.
For drummers looking to dip their feet in the waters of hybrid drumming, or for drummers who just need to add one or two sounds to their kits without having to invest in a larger solution, the SPD One range may well be just the thing. And, at just £199 for the SPD One Kick, Percussion and Electo, and £239 for the SPD One Wav, they come in at not much more than a quality cajon!
For me though, with the types of gigs that we often end up playing, the perfect use for them is for those smaller, semi-acoustic gigs, where the band can’t take a full kit. I go to a lot of nights where drummers who would usually have a full kit strip down to a cajon or some hand percussion, it’s a great change of pace for a lot of bands, but I think being able to add something like an SPD One Kick under your foot is just the ticket.
Roland SPD One Kick
As I mentioned above, I think the Kick is going to be the SPD One model we see out and about most. Perfect for popping under your foot for your smaller gigs where you play cajon, but there’s a PA available, or for connecting to the line input of your Street Cube EX when you, your mic and your acoustic head out busking, the only thing that seems to be wrong with the SPD One Kick is the name…
… because it doesn’t just do kick sounds. Offering a choice of kicks, but adding a range of other versatile sounds including clap, cymbal, Cabasa, the SPD One Kick is no one-trick pony. And when you add to that the ‘User’ setting that lets you import a sample over USB, things get even more special. Tuning and a choice of reverb or distortion of varying levels rounds things off just nicely.
The Roland SPD One Wav is really what you make it I suppose. A .wav sample playback device, the SPD One Wav lets you drag your samples – from simple percussive one shots to full backing tracks – onto it and use them as you need. A handy feature lets you change the way the sample dealt with by simply adding a filename suffix.
It will be interesting to see how the SPD One Wav ends up being used in people’s setups. Instantly, I can see this being just the thing for solo hip hop performers who perform to a backing track – no more having to take the laptop – but this is the perfect thing if your band incorporates a few samples into your songs and doesn’t want to have to manage a cumbersome laptop/DAW -based setup.
Roland SPD One Percussion
While the SPD One Percussion may seem the most ‘conventional’ of the range, that is in no way intended as a negative. If you want to throw in a quick conga or bongo solo to your set, look no further. For drummers who need to add the occasional percussion part to a song, this is the pad to go for to put in your hybrid set up.
Or what about if you’re the singer? With the SPD One Percussion, you can move beyond standing there with a tambourine or an egg shaker. Why not add a bit of what everybody loves: moar cowbell. Just check with the drummer first…
Roland SPD One Electro
The Roland SPD Electro is another great option for the hybrid drummer. If you need to add the crack of some classic electronic pad sounds or some ear candy that comes from a bit deeper out in left field – like 310 feet at Fenway – then the SPD One Electro is the pad to clamp onto your kit.
As with the other pads, the SPD One Electro also doubles up as a MIDI controller and offers two knobs on the side of the unit that let you quickly adjust the trigger threshold and sensitivity to match the pad with your playing style.
Summing up the Roland SPD One range
Personally, I think these are going to be a pretty big hit for Roland. I can see drummers and percussionists picking these up, as well as producers and singer-songwriters; and that SPD One Wav is likely to be put to use by a lot of performers who need to add samples or backing tracks to their sets, but don’t want to have to carry a laptop around with them.
The Roland SPD One range also offers a MIDI output, so you can sit this in your studio as the perfect surface for triggering sounds or for creating drum and percussion patterns in your DAW.
As ever, if you have any questions, or if you want to pre-order your SPD One, please get in touch. We don’t have an ETA on these yet, but we’ll let you know as soon as we do, so stay tuned for more information!
UPDATE – 29th May
Roland have added a swathe of videos to their channels recently, so there’s lots more to see, hear and learn about the SPD One range. Actually, I suppose we should be true to Roland’s branding an refer to them as the SPD::One range, but I’ve seen the term SPD-1 being used as well, so maybe there’s a bit of flexibility there. Sorry, enough waffle. Let’s hear the sounds and learn a bit more about what the Roland SPD::One / SPD-1 range can do…
Roland SPD-1 Percussion – hear all the sounds
Roland SPD-1 Electro- hear all the sounds
Roland SPD-1 Kick – hear all the sounds
What can the Roland SPD-1 Electro Tuning and Effects controls do?
What can the Roland SPD-1 Percussion Tuning and Effects controls do?
What can the Roland SPD-1 Kick Tuning and Effects controls do?
How do I put wav file sample on the Roland SPD-1 Kick, Electro and Percussion?
How do I put wav file samples on the Roland SPD-1 WAV?
How do I layer sounds on the Roland SPD-1 Wav?
How do I set up a click track and backing track on the Roland SPD-1 Wav?
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