New workstation: Roland Fantom 06/07/08

I don’t regret my Jupiter Xm at all, but if I had a little more room and was making the decision today I would almost certainly opt for the Fantom 06.

Sweetwater has a good overview and their product detail pages list features more clearly than Roland does.


That’s a nice new lineup, and seems to be decently priced. The sequencer looks pretty nice with the clip launching. Mix in the pads, Audio Over USB, and DAW control you could set up, and this is a pretty compelling package that Roland has put together.

If I were to choose between the two, I might also be leaning towards these new Fantom’s. They look more intuitive to use and have full-sized keys. Roland has some competition within themselves in this price range, as also still have the System 8. But they also have different target markets for these products.

The build quality and screen look nice on these new Fantom’s. Seeing something like this new Fantom 06 with its $1499 price tag, I think people would be willing to pay a little extra for a Groovebox like the MC-707 if it had a better screen and build quality.


What’s the difference between the current Fantom 6/7/8?

I can see some physical differences but I don’t know enough about the products in general to catch anything specific.


1 Like

That was my haircut in the 70’s.

1 Like

The only music I ever properly finished was from an X6 that replaced a couple of electribes. I just really gelled with the workflow but hated the slow load speeds for samples. I got seduced by the new shiny and sold it on. I now never finish anything.

I am half tempted to give one a try again as a complete standalone unit. Hmmm.


I also had the X6, it was rugged like a tank. The workflow was great, the RPS patterns a blessing. Unfortunately with a few bugs in sync mode that were never fixed. The loading times were horrible and that was ultimately the reason for me to sell the X6 after three or four years.

The successor G6 was financially out of reach for me, and the FA-06 was just a cheap knock-off and not a real Fantom. Well, and then came the Fantom 6, which is too expensive for me for hobby use.

I’m afraid I’m going to be very excited about the new Fantom-06. Maybe it will bring back the good old spirit of the X6 … now with better sounds and x0x sequencing on top :wink:


Glancing through the reference manual, its sequencer appears to have a similar structure to the MC-707/101.

Patterns appear to be about the same as MC Clips
Groups appear to be the same as MC Scenes
A Song is an ordering of Groups (MC Scenes)
A Fantom 0 Scene is a particular setup of Zones, sequence data, etc.

Scenes can be chained but I’m a little unclear on whether an entire song can be played in automated fashion or if you have to manually trigger Groups to advance through the Song.

Fantom 0 vs. costlier Fantom - The costlier version supposedly has nicer keys/keybed, aftertouch, V-Piano engine. Probably have to try the 0 keyboard for yourself to see if you can live with it, assuming you’re ok with no aftertouch.

1 Like
1 Like

I’m not not interested.

Currently exploring totally new workflows, with the common denominator that it’s just one box, one source, one output. So I’m into Logic now, believe it or not.

It’ll be interesting to compare that process with this workstation, and see what it brings.


Wow the price is competitive for an all in one workstation.


Especially if it’s one with Fantom standard. I can do without aftertouch and could accept an about average keybed, if the workflow’s solid.

Local dealer told me workstations are a dead concept. No one cares. Yet, they keep putting out new models. I’m thinking, dealer’s wrong on this one :slight_smile:

1 Like

Although I’ve only demoed the more expensive Fantom I didn’t like the keybed much.

But to be honest I’ve not liked any keybed since the Korg Oasys and Virus Ti.

1 Like

I had a fantom 6 and loved it. Just too expensive…so this might be the way to go for me.

Just ordered an MC707…to use as a sound module…hmmm.

Then I guess you can save money that would have been wasted on an allegedly better keybed/keys, unless you find another difference.

I quickly took a look at the Roland site and noticed the more expensive Fantom has CV jacks and 600MB sample memory vs 250-something on the 0. Dunno if you care about those but I’m sure several others do.

If the 06 had waterfall keys, I’d be more tempted, as the keyboard would then be a better fit for the organ engine.


Arent workstations just Ipads with a nice midi keyboard attached? I think their the hardest sell now.

I never owned a workstation but I own an MPC One which receive such comments as well. Personally, I feel that if the software and hardware integration is done well, it is a much better experience than an iPad with a controller. Again, for me, the reason is that every button is there for a reason, the UI/UX of the software is optimized for the controller and for the job. My MPC, and probably those workstation as well, also have audio and midi interfaces built-in which if using an iPad, it quickly becomes a rats nest of wires, USB Hubs, etc.

I often dreamed though of a very refined software for iPad, that could make use of a dedicated controller something the kind of Machine MK3 or Ableton Push.

1 Like

Chopsquad does a walkthrough of creating one pattern from scratch. One workflow improvement I see over the MC-707 is the count-in setting is easier to get to - less menu-diving. Calculator-style view for punching in the tempo is also a nice touch.

1 Like

You can though Midi map a good Midi controller with assignable knobs sliders etc. Once its done you dont have to do it again. So each knob as you say has a function.

The Fantom 07 is half the price of the Fantom 7. Think it will be my next purchase.


Audiobus forum is full of iPad enthusiasts who start GAS threads about hardware - SP-404 Mark II, MPC One, MPC Live 2…

The iPad enthusiast who can truly stay faithful to the iPad is a rare creature indeed. More often than not peeps fall prey to GAS and accumulate a hardware stable to go with the iPad(s)

Somebody will start a Fantom 0 thread there very soon if it’s not there already. It’s inevitable. Assuming the USB implementation will play nice with IOS - and if doesn’t there will still be posts just to moan about it… Probably won’t play nice with IOS because the reference manual mentions USB drivers