I am going through the process of expanding my system with modules and a new case and power supply. You can see the modules I own here. I still have to move part of the budget for the module and power supply cases.
So far, I have used the system mostly on a live performance scenario, using a mix of synthesized elements and camera input processing. Studio-wise I like to explore video feedback and I want to have more versatility.
Regarding camera input, I only have the Visual Cortex, therefore, only one input. I bought a Panasonic WJ-AVE5 to properly add more inputs with wipe and mixing capabilities, managing that outside of the modules. Unfortunately, I was sold a malfunctioning unit and I am now looking for an alternative.
In the future I would like to introduce some glitch/circuit bent aesthetics for some of the projects, the TBC in these is something I look for. I also enjoy the ability to do internal feedback, no-input style.
Right now there are a few units selling for a lower than average price close by and I’m wondering if someone with more experience with these units can advice me on this.
Some personal considerations.
There is no menu on this unit, as everything is on the faceplate, I enjoy this, performance-wise. The unit comes with the titler and has a moveable picture in picture, which can lead to some fun explorations. It also is the cheapest of the options.
It is limited to two inputs, plus one other called external camera. These would easilly be maxed out by filming a band and doing either external or internal feedback. It also has no effects. These units supposedly handle well glitch modifications and inputs, which is a plus.
In the eventuality of me being able to repair the other unit I would have two of these, moderatelly solving the input limitation.
Regarding the V-4 and V-8, these offer a few more capabilities out of the box, with effects and all. I have had less success finding videos exploring these effects, especially on the V-8. I’m particularly interested in the capabilities of creating a mirrored effect, which would be nice for a psychedelic kaleidoscopic style exploration. The V-8 has RGB input, which is great for computer input, saving me the usage of the Intensity Shuttle for recording. 8 Inputs also enables great diversity, allowing me to do the internal and external feedback along with a multiple camera input.
The V-8 is the most expensive scenario, and the unit above appears to be cosmetically worn out. The TBC on these appears to be worse than average as pointed out here, which can be something that is troublesome as I’m going to probably get the new eurorack version of the AVEMOD.
What do you think?
Are the built-in effects of the Roland units worth it?
Is the feedback effect of the V-8 a good one? What about the no-input feedback style?
Would I be better by getting the cheaper option, trying to fix the malfunctioning panasonic, and eventually adding more modules to deal with extra inputs?
I have also pondered on having a Raspberry Pi as a feedback processor and that would substitute the effect on the Roland units, and be cheaper and eventually more versatile. No obvious solution for the mirroring effects though.
Thank you all for your time, and I’m sorry for the long post. I deeply appreciate any feedback and sharing of experiences.