Behringer plans for a new line of Eurorack synth modules, based on the classic Roland System-100M. The modules are intended to be in Eurorack format – nearly half the size of the original Roland modules.
Can anything good come out of this? Well – we hope so! Even if the Behringer modules were smaller, they’d be beneficial not only for the Eurorack community, but also for owners of the original System-100M.
A personal statement: The sound of the System-100M is my absolute favorite in the repertoire of vintage Roland synthesizers. The sound of a “slightly larger” 100M system, to be exact – with at least 4 VCOs, 4 VCFs, etc. Enormously powerful, pleasantly warm (believe it or not …) and impressively dynamic. And – at the same time – crisp clear “modern” analog. The ideal mix of everything, in some ways.
Admittedly, the System-700 sounds even more livelier, more massive and – especially when run through the on-board effects – more powerful.
Not to forget the small System-100. Significally different than the 100M, yet powerful and of equally outstanding quality. Nevertheless: It’s the System-100M I would never part with.
Popularity of the (original) Roland System-100M is reflected in increasing prices. Prices that are out of the reach of many synth enthusiasts these days. A standard 5-module cabinet (the so-called D-Set) barely trades below 3,000 Euros / USD.
Therefore, an affordable new edition of the Systen-100M would be welcome. According the Behringer’s plans, concept and appearance of the new modules would remain unchainged* … just a lot smaller.
[* Behringer would do well to change the current name of SYSTEM-100 to SYSTEM-100M. It would certainly provide more clarity.]
The Behringer System-100M design includes 13 modules:
SYSTEM 100 110 VCO/VCF/VCA
SYSTEM 100 112 DUAL VCO
SYSTEM 100 121 DUAL VCF
SYSTEM 100 130 DUAL VCA
SYSTEM 100 131 MIXER/OSCILLATOR/ HEADPHONE AMP
SYSTEM 100 132 DUAL CV/AUDIO MIXER & CV GENERATOR
SYSTEM 100 140 DUAL ENVELOPE/LFO
SYSTEM 100 150 RING MOD/NOISE/ S&H/LFO
SYSTEM 100 165 DUAL PORTAMENTO CONTROLLER
SYSTEM 100 172 PHASE SHIFTER/AUDIO DELAY/GATE DELAY/LFO
SYSTEM 100 173 QUAD SIGNAL GATE/ PATCH BAY
SYSTEM 100 174 PARAMETRIC EQ
SYSTEM 100 182 ANALOG SEQUENCER
Uli Behringer about the current status of the project:
“These are 13 MID’s or concept documents we create for every single product as part of our PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) process before we hand them over to our R&D departments for development,” he notes. “We haven’t decided yet which of these modules we will actually produce as it is important that we achieve a certain production volume.”
“This is just the beginning,” he adds. “Our Vision is to build both legacy modules but also come up with innovative solutions which we have demonstrated with the DeepMind or the Neutron.”
Proposed prices would be around 100 USD / 100 Euros per module. That would be sensational …
IF the Behringer System-100(M) sees the light of day, it certainly might be of interest for any Eurorack user. In addition, owners of an original Roland System-100M would have the chance to complement their system with Behringer Eurorack-Modules. With a couple of sequencers, phase shifters or cv-mixer modules, just to name a few.
Current street prices of rare Roland 100M modules are exorbitantly high. A Roland 182 sequencer costs around 2000 USD / Euros. So, why not fill up the vintage system with a handful of inexpensive “new” modules?
It remains to be seen whether the Behringer SYSTEM-100(M) becomes reality or not. And if so, which modules will go into mass-production. Good hardware and reasonable audio values provided, we would appreciate the new System-100(M) …