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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Mar-16 > NAMM 2016 SPECIAL


The NAMM Show recently kicked off in Anaheim, California, complete with all of the big studio gear announcements for the coming year. There were surprises, updates, oddities and more hardware synth modules than ever. MusicTech editor Andy Jones was there to bring you all the latest news, releases and gossip…



NAMM 2016 kicks off a day early with a preview event to make the press feel special and a completely new version of Roland…

The NAMM Show started a day early this year. For the 20-something years I’ve been attending the show, it has always started on a Thursday, but just as Christmas (in the UK anyway) seems to start earlier every year, so the NAMM Show now starts on a Wednesday… or at least it did this year.

Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis receive a Lifetime Achievement award

And no one was more surprised than me, especially after luckily getting out to LA a few days early for what I thought would be a few relaxing days by the pool. As I arrived, trunks in hand, I was greeted by pouring rain and the prospect of a two-hour Roland press conference to attend. To say that the smug smile was quickly erased from my face would be a massive understatement…

The Roland Boutiques –see our review p60;

So while the preview day of NAMM was not officially a NAMM day, we did have that Roland press conference and another special event – where members of the press were invited to check out some of the new show gear – to tell you about, and this bonus day looks like becoming a standard feature of NAMM going forward.

ROLI’s RISE 49 – bloody great;

First up, the all-new Press Preview Event, and there were several varied companies here, including MT favourite ROLI with its groundbreaking Seaboard keyboards, a set of controller keyboards that utilise what the company calls ‘the five dimensions of touch’ to play sounds more expressively. Also on show was the new 49-key (or Key Wave) RISE, which is a bigger version of the 25-note one I reviewed a few months back. I won’t lie – I bloody loved that, and this being just a bigger version meant that I assumed I would love it too. Sure enough, after settling down with it for what I thought would be a short demo I ended up spending an age testing out the extra dimensions with the excellent Equator synth. This really is a keyboard to try out if you can…

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About MusicTech

The new issue of MusicTech is on sale Thursday February 18th and this month we’re bringing you the ultimate modular synth masterclass! We explain (in detail) how to build your own system. Also this month we’ve got a preview of Yamaha’s Montage synth, a look back at NAMM 2016 and brand new reviews and tutorials.