Roland VS-840

Roland VS-840

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VS-840, Digital Multrack-studio from Roland in the VS series.

4 user reviews
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Roland VS-840 tech. sheet

  • Manufacturer: Roland
  • Model: VS-840
  • Series: VS
  • Category: Digital Multrack-studios
  • Added in our database on: 01/11/2003

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Roland VS-840 user reviews

Average Score:4.8( 4.8/5 based on 4 reviews )
 3 reviews75 %
 1 user review25 %
Value For Money :
MGR/EDDY JAMES02/07/2003

MGR/EDDY JAMES's review"Roland VS-840 Digital 8 Track Recorder"

Roland VS-840
I purchased this VS 840 at Sam Ash in Columbus, Ohio in very early 1999 for around $850-$900. I was upgrading from a Tascam 4 TRACK 242MKIII MTR.

I think the sound quality is very good, although alot of that depends on how good you record, and mixdown,and what type of equiptment you are using to begin with. I feel that most of the effects are very good,with a vast array of editing options. I espically like the scene memory for storing different mixes, and the built in guitar tuner. The undo/redo feature is very handy,and the virtual recording tracks are great for recording different takes of a part without erasing the original take. The ability to Fast forward or back instantainiously makes recording much more enjoyable and saves tons of time. I aslo like being able to add effects after the part has been already recorded should I with to do so.

Originaly mine used 100 MGB zip disc. It wasnt enough time to record a complete song, so I upgraded the unit and had a 250 MGB ZIP DRIVE installed. I dont really care for the inputs being on the back of the unit, and wish it had a digital input jack. I feel that it is somewhat overrated as an eight track, and would consider it more of a four track or six track machine, as each track should be able to be mixed down at the same time rather than bouncing 1,2,3,4 to 5/6 and 1,2,3,4 to 7/8.
Some of the Guitar effects dont have reverb in the edit mode, and I wish I could use an effect on more than just one track at mixdown. The owners manual is not at all user friendly, espically if you have never worked with digital recorders before, as was my case. The fader distance seems short and the cut off is sometimes abrupt and cuts out before the end of the slide distance. The faders could also be bigger.

The housing of the unit seems too lightweight and should be heavier plastic. It seems to be a very high quality unit as far as the electronics, circitry and all that goes. The finished recordings are plenty adaquate for demos, and as good as some finished product that Ive heard.

I feel that with the 250 MGB Zip Drive installed it is well worth the money and would not hesitate to buy the larger units that they make. In fact,Im sure my next unit will be a Roland, just from my expierence and satisfaction with this unit.

This review was originally published on

MGR/Anonymous's review"Roland VS840"

Roland VS-840
I bought this portable studio workshop from McMurray's Music in St.Louis because I was starting to get tired of the limitations of single-track recording on crappy, improvised gear. I paid approximately 1,000 dollars for it new.

It is amazing to think about all of the things this digital studio can do for a thousand bucks! Thanks to affordable digital technology, a band can use a relatively affordable piece of equipment to record songs with remarkable quality. With the Roland VS840, you have the flexibility of multi-track recording, complete with four "simultaneous" inputs as well as a built-in guitar preamp, onboard effects library, onboard graphic eq., 8 tracks, up to 64 "virtual" tracks, working faders, and every form of output connection they could think of. This unit can be plugged into a PC, any stereo with RCA inputs, or directly to a CD burner.

The simultaneous inputs allow for live recording, if desired, although you have to be creative on how you use each of the jacks. I've found that routing drum mics into an old PA head allows me to only use one track for all of the drums. This leaves a vocal mic, guitar mic, and bass mic open. If you run out of inputs for your performance, there are 4 more tracks available for overdubbing backing vocals, keyboards, extra guitars, etc. Effects can be attached either during the recording process (track by track) or during the mixing phase.

Mixing your recordings to tape (or CD) is extremely easy on this unit. You have full control of each track's level through the use of faders, as well as individual control over effects volume (per track) and panning.

Because the unit is digital, you can re-record parts of a song very easily until you get it right. If you only need to fix a small part of a solo, you can dial up the right part of the track and fire away. If you don't want to throw away an old attempt, just use one of the 8 virtual tracks available. The tracks can be started, stopped, moved forward or backwards with the ease of a CD player.

The Roland VS840 records the tracks on a 250MB ZIP drive. Be aware that 100MB ZIP disks and be used for duplicating songs (from one unit to another), but cannot be used for the actual process of recording. With all of the virtual tracks, each song can take up a large chunk of memory. A 250MB disk can effectively hold about 8-10 minutes of music. The nice thing is that, when you're done, you can always erase the disk and put new songs on top of the old ones. This is good because those disks aren't cheap.

Some of the controls are a little too small for comfort. Lots of tiny knobs. The arrays of flashing lights can be a bit intimidating at first, but Roland does a great job of making it easy for beginners. Even though there is a LOT that this little puppy can do, it is possible to make great recordings using pre-sets and a user-friendly manual. I was able to record a 6 track song complete with overdubs within a day of purchasing the studio. Very easy to learn.

The disks don't hold enough memory for me, and you can easily find yourself in the middle of a song and suddenly have the "Disk Full!" message appear out of nowhere. This can be frustrating. That's why I stick to only two songs per disk if they have very many tracks on them.

The onboard effects are of mixed quality. The guitar effects are on the cheesey-metal-cheese-whiz side of the spectrum. Lots of reverb built into the distortion effects, and not enough body if you have good amps to work with. For distortion, particularly if you have a good amp, I wouldn't bother with the onboard effects. The reverb options, however, are wonderful and very flexible. Everything from large-arena emulation to small room and everything in between.

A nice, sturdy, compact design. The unit seems very tough considering its sophistication. I've hauled it around quite a bit and I've never had a problem.

For anybody serious about making quality home recordings, this is a wonderful piece of equipment to have. Not only does it allow you to record your performances, but it also aids in the composition of songs. With common-sense recording techniques and a little research, I've been able to make recordings that have fooled non-professionals into thinking that they are store-bought. Of course, the recordings are only as good as your weakest microphone. ;)

This review was originally published on

calvin47's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Roland VS-840
2 MIDI inputs, 4 between which a jack between guitar.
64 tracks and 8 virtual tracks simultaneously record
Support utilisZip

All the comfort is present


Trs interface easy to use. I lost the manual and g mid managed to find .. Chapo!


Then the BRAVOOOO !!!!. Qualit its excelente for the price of the unit !!!!! Really nice dynamics is Submitted and effect are worthy of a good multi purpose.


Under no circumstances will I turn to table.En effect is directly connect to my computer and I work with Pro Tools, Cubase, or Logic and dchir.Voila come see my music extract ke to say what you think: -)

Otiss's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Roland VS-840
MIDI in / out;
Foot switch (handy for recording!)
Digital Out Connectors: 1 Coaxial and 1 Optical;
Headphone jack with volume knob sr good!;
Master made out like cinch;
2 sockets Monitor or Auxiliary RCA type;
4 input jacks like jack standard. Here it should be noted that between a jack is also available in High Impdance, which allows you to connect a guitar directly. With the multi-effect Intgr ago so what to do! The input 3 and 4 as they are available also as cinch, if you want to connect a CD player for example.
SCSI Connectors D-Sub 25-pin
Some regret that there is no XLR.

There are opportunities for the dtourner dparts auxiliary Monitor and other outlets for their master to regain normal function with a small station live mixing. Especially if your name is Lee Scratch Perry ...
Signal Processing
20-bit AD conversion surchantillonnage 64 times
DA Conversion 20 bits surchantillonnage 128 times
Internal Processing: 24 bits (section console)
Frquence of Sampling: 44.1 kHz - 32 kHz

8 recording quality are proposed. The best (uncompressed) offers 37 minutes of recording and the worst 103 minutes. All this for one track on a ZIP 100 MB And yes, it hurts the the bt.
If you do not call Robert Johnson or Django Reinhardt, we have to learn short. If your thing is plutt Pink Floyd with loooooongues beaches DLIR sound, this machine will probably not do much as it is. For prmix may be? Again it will find tips and dtourner if you want to use it. This is certainly not a sampler, but it is possible for example to complete thanks the editor of riffs. To you to find your recipes.

Sync happens in MTC or MIDI clock (the most common formats). Beware the machine works only Master. But otherwise has rolled nickel.
The temporary table can easily drive a box rhythms. It is easy to edit a particular measure: dplacer, delete, copy. For example you can record a measurement from your bote rhythms midi clock and then copy it up 99 times, has made a loop for you cheap in memory storage! But if you just had and all the tracks, so you ok You Save almost any space, but the machine will row. I remember, it's not a sampler. We must find the balance.

Number of tracks
With the best quality recording, it is possible to read or 6 tracks to record two tracks while you read 4. With the worst quality you read 8 or 3 you save while you play 5.
The more you add effects, or lments said, more will be a hard to follow for bbte.

For me the machine has the potential to trssduisantes features are its small memory clamps. At present, it is compltement Exceeds by machines offering more space and power. on the other hand regarding the quality I think what is happening now is plutt disaster. This little machine has also a true spirit, cohrente design and is robust. I t struck by the quality of the sound console. And the multi-effects. The rverbrations are profound. If you like the sound Roland (yes me), I promise that you will find it!


Configuration gnrale Is it easy?
Three blocks: a recorder, mixer, multi-effects. Simple yes, but if you want to push the boundaries becomes a bit more acrobatic. We must invent personal use and then we will start finding the very small screen and feel the lack of knobs, even if you can assign some prs what you want the existing ones. I got a few knots in the brain. But if you use it according to what is proposed by Roland, a rolling quickly.

The usual functions are they easily accessible?
What I miss most: the knobs to pan! I would say that even when the effects are boring edit. And then you can edit prcisment really, I tell you a! I gave up myself: a p'tit preset reverb here and there by a track weapon and go.

Trs good manual. In French. Prcis, complete, well-built, 190 large pages, table of contents clear. Some chapters are a bit even when compact. I have not read. The Quick Guide is handy as j'tais Obviously eager to rev it to work right away. And aa t. Contents good introduction.
To get an ide, here's manual VS-840GX (very close):


Converters even yourself!
Not srieux I'm not a pro l. I'll spear. I feel it's a shame to not use the outputs of this numriques BCAN. Do I need to see a. Sure it sounds, the creature.

Effects and Filters
Sr but it works! I will not repeat the good things about the multi-effects in terms of sound quality. I would only add to the guitar that they thought at Roland amp simulators, overdrive, chorus, delays ... spcial guitar. There's also the keyboards (vocoder. ..). It's COSM. Send me everything on a fender amp vritable lamps XBB12 turbo-active, and you tell me the news!
Mention spcial qualiseur for which I do not want to pass me. He does his job. 3 strips of Mdiums parameter.

The dynamic is it respect?
Ah Voui. aa the PCHE. And low levels are Submitted Defines and clearly.


How long have you use it?
I bought it new in 1998. And yes, dates back to a century ago. For about 1000.

What is the particular feature you like best and least?
What I like most: the sound. Pratica then the all in one. I couraging models of training that allow me to practice my guitar as if my friends taient l. Then I'll save everyone when the track is ready (acoustic guitar trio). But the one piece by zip!
Sometimes I use it to mumuse with compounds style dub, electro, etc.. In this case what is the j'apprcie ct "hack" the authorized machine that combines a good organization gives nice about the results. More enjoyable than with software, anyway.

I dplore Obviously it is the lack of space on the zips with 75O MB 100 MB I would be in paradise! But 100 MB really is just too much for most users. The choice of media has done Roland is the era rvle be bad. But silent it difficult to know.

I do not like is the hum of the machine. BzzzzzzzZZ. Even when it is not trs to record in a quiet Reduces!
Have you tried many other models before acqurir?
No. Was not really a competitor. I tried a Fostex and Yamaha mini-disc. The Fostex silent cheaper, had even more tracks if I remember correctly, but I did not like the sound. The sound of the Yamaha silent carrment compress so out! Other solutions n'taient not portable.

How do you report qualitprix?
In the era I thought was a bit expensive even when. Because of the limited amount of memory too. But the good quality silent ct. Even today I am satisfied with the quality. For hardware computer type, value and prices fall quickly. But l would like to say something.
For this machine, the price has fallen much faster and lower than its value. At o j'cris this opinion, we find the VS-840 to about 350 on the second hand market. The new machines do not offer an equivalent quality of his that part of 1000. O For the price it is found used, new machines only offer compressed audio format! It seems to me that what has increased today is the supply of memory, not the quality of sound. See for yourself what you prfrez.

Exprience with, you will do again this choice?
I would have to wait a bit and select the MODEL with more disk space. would have lived a few frustrations in some uses. But if I chose the right machine.
Now, if I had 1000, I would hand 500 in my piggy bank and I m'achterais of a VS-880 OCCAZ. The new Roland VS The series is far too expensive! Please note I am an aficionado of Roland sounds. Z'aviez comment. Gots and the colors ...

In the end
It's a good little machine, which can be used diffrent fawns. We should not be too demanding with her cunning and know if it does not follow you. It can thus be intgre in a string and use simple prmixage station, station drive, multi-effects to an instrument and so on. On the other ct plutt if your "Hardware" and you think that the limits of a machine can be as a driver Whereas cratif in a process, it is also possible to consider it as a tool and a couple squenceur, a box rhythms couraging A to Z scale model of a small project.

This machine is not buried, on the contrary I feel that time is his ally and that it will find its crneau.

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  • Roland VS-840
  • Roland VS-840
  • Roland VS-840

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Other names: vs 840, vs840

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