Summary: I wanted SSSSSOOOOOO bad to like this unit. The best sounds of all digital drums in my opinion. It was also very easy to use, very easy to find and setup sounds, very easy to change pitch. Average user could spend 30 minutes on it without the manual and have a great idea on how to get around on it. My gripe is that it's best for studio work. I used this several nights at live shows with a live drummer. It would fire sounds on its own when the band started playing.
Summary: Despite clever use of keywords like "Phrase Loop" and "USB Memory" and "Audio Input" You will find that the Octapad SPD-30 has NO SAMPLE PLAYBACK OR RECORD of any kind. Fine. It is certainly a rugged input device, and the onboard sounds are excellent... once you re-edit the preset drum kits, most of which are jokes. The so-called "Phrase Loop" is a little onboard sequencer. It's ok. The sequencer has a user interface which seems to be state-of-the-art for 1998.
Summary: I bought this unit to be expressive in live performances and recording percussion loops. It lives up to my expectations. Combining this with my Roland Drum Kit, I soon realized I could use the SPD-30 as a stand alone kit and plug in my kick and I am all set with several expressive drum sets or a full line of percussion sounds. I can carry this in both hands and set up in a little corner and not take up any space.
Summary: well to start with let me say i actually own one so my review isn't based on playing with one in a store. it is true roland stopped short with this machine. roland has too many competing products in my opinion. there could be so much more functionality with the unit if a few things were included from other roland products. that said i will get to what it is. it is just supposed to be a pecussion machine.
Good product but not quite there for the serious musician.
30 October 2011
Summary: The possibilities with this product are many in terms of customization. You can alter (great) sounds and combinations between them. Add a couple of pads and you have a great compact (percussive) drumset. What I feel is that Roland could have spent more time developing the Phrase Loop function. I need to sync the internal metronome to actual music going on around you. As it is now its more for playing around at home alone.
Summary: Well this is a well built product. Good fit and finish, durable, and fairly sensitive. But, the built in sounds leave a lot to be desired. First there aren't that many real drum sounds. I would say more than half of the sounds it has are gimmicky. I would rather have more snare sounds or drum kit sounds. Snare drum and cymbal sounds are very limited. No metal snares are included from what I remember. And it doesn't look like Roland sells any sound add-ons for it.
Summary: I guess the Octapad series has been around for a long time. The SPD-30 is the Octapad's newest incarnation. Obvious features are the LCD display which simplifies pad configuration and editing, a good set of drum sounds, and knobs for controlling edits. There's also a slot for a USB thumbdrive and a USB interface for connecting the SPD-30 to a computer. The pads are almost but not quite playable by hand, more's the pity.
Summary: My next purchase will be the Yamaha DTXM12 Multi Pad Sampling Drum Pad. I have heard good things about this unit and I think it bits at the heels of the Octapad. Check it out. (Hey Yamaha, send my one and I will rate it.