The Roland VR-09 Combo Organ sure is a mouthful but it is not just a mouthful. It does pack quite some punch. Roland is having a pretty good run with its line of keyboards which the piano community is receiving with so much gusto.
And one of such keyboards doing so well is the Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ.
We know that it can be somewhat challenging for the beginner finding the right keyboard. Seeing as there are loads of keyboards out there. And as for the other players – the intermediate and advanced players – finding the keyboard with a perfect balance of quality and a great price is also quite a chore.
Now, we’ve gone through the Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ. And we can confidently say that this keyboard does quite well with so many features to impress the beginner and pro players.
How does it do this? Well, we’ll go into the specifics in a bit, so don’t leave this page. There’s lots to see.
- Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ Specs
- A Brief Overview Of The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ
- Features Of The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ
Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ Specs
- Number of keys: 61 velocity sensitive keys.
- Sound Engine: SuperNatural Synth, Virtual Tone Wheel Organ, PCM Synth.
- Other Controllers: D-Beam Controller, Modulation/Pitchbend.
- Max Polyphony: 128 notes.
- Presets: 245 presets.
- Sound Effects: Reverb, Chorus, Delay, Rotary, Overdrive, Vibrato.
- Audio Recording: 16-bit/44.1kHz, WAV files.
- Audio Playback: AIFF, WAV, MP3.
- Connectivity: Audio Inputs, Audio Outputs, Headphones jack, USB (Types A and B), MIDI I/O, Sustain Pedal jacks.
- Software: iPad editor app.
- Power: 6 AA batteries, AC power adapter.
- Dimensions: 39.68 x 11.81 x 4.18 inches.
- Weight: 12 pounds.
A Brief Overview Of The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ
The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ is a 61-key keyboard with loads of features. Firstly, this comes with about 223 programs. And these programs are organized into three major groups. There’s the Piano, the Synth and the Organ. And each of these categories comes with its own Drum section.
Now, since each of these programs come with their own controls for leveling, this keyboard automatically puts the control in your hands. You’ll be in complete charge of how you use your layers.
And when you create your unique sounds and layers, there are 25 banks available where you can save them. Also, each of these banks come with their own 4 registrations. So, you have more than enough room to save all your best sounds.
What more should you know about this keyboard?
- You can upload more sounds to your keyboard, capture performances real time or play back tracks using the USB port.
- There’s a MIDI in/out slot.
- So you can use your keyboard just about anywhere, this comes with the option of using batteries.
- There are jacks plus an output for stereo and headphones.
- There’s a pitch bend wheel as well.
This keyboard also comes with an LCD display. So you can easily navigate through all the programs on the keyboard using the wheel or the navigation buttons.
And below these buttons and controls, you’ll also find some buttons which you can use to control transposition. So, with this you can easily change the octaves of your keyboard up or down, however you desire.
Now that you know all that, let’s get a bit more in-depth.
Features Of The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ
Controls – Loads Of Options
When you take a look at this keyboard, you’ll find that there are so many controls on the interface. It might look overwhelming at first blush but they are actually quite easy to use. Check it out…
On the right side of the menu is the piano category. And this piano category contains about four buttons. There’s a button for piano, and then others for clavinet, and electric piano. The last button is used to access other sounds.
Next, we have the synth section which also contains some buttons. Here you have the Strings, the Brass, the Pad, Choir, Bass Synth Lead and SFX. And like you had it in the piano category, there’s another button which leads you to other sounds besides the aforementioned.
Now, finally, on the right side, you’ll find a section for the Drums. In the Drum Section, there are two buttons which help you to control the tempo and sound of the drum.
Also, in this section, you’ll be able to select from the 17 kits which drum sound you prefer. There are both digital and acoustic drum sounds actually.
To make things interesting, this keyboard also gives you to ability to record drum performances. And with the looper, you’ll also be able to layer them.
The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ is a combination of an organ and an electric piano as the name suggests. So, it naturally has the features of both instruments.
On the left side of the keyboard, you’ll find the organ section which comes with 9 draw bars. Well, there’s a 10th draw bar, and this bar contains the controls for things like chorus/vibrato, percussion, and overall level.
By the way, bear in mind that these draws are not the clicky type. They just glide till you’re no longer pushing.
One of the most impressive features of the Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ is the versatility you get from its effect. And among the effects available, the one that draws and holds our attention the most is the EFX. What’s it about?
Well, the EFX section comes with 6 knobs which help you control things like tone, MFX, overdrive, reverb, delay, tone, and compressor.
The MFX knob lets you add the pitch shifter, wah, chorus, flanger as well as other sound effects. Plus, you also get a pretty wide variety of options when it comes to the type of reverb and delay you want. Each effect actually has six selections each.
Ready to get even more impressed? There’s more…
This keyboard also gives you the ability to work with seven different effects simultaneously. And you can do this in two ways.
One, you can toggle on the Dual Mode so the effect is applied to both sounds, or, you can use the Split Mode. But in this mode, the effect is only applied to the sound at the upper registry.
Well, all this works for all effects except for Reverb. Reverb already applies to all sounds naturally.
Now, let’s talk about the looper.
The looper is great for live performances as it helps you add layers or gig with any rhythm section of your choice. We already mentioned this before but since we’re here, we might as well say it again. You can loop your real time performances of different drum sections.
The looper will also help you record any keyboard part while pre-selected drum parts play in the background.
Now, if you choose to use the USB port on the keyboard, you’ll also be able to do audio playback using SMF, WAV or MP3 file format.
Three Sound Engines
There are three sound engines on the Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ which is completely awesome. There’s the Virtual Tone Wheel organ engine from Roland. And there’s the SuperNatural synth as well as the classic synths.
Well, what does that mean to you?
It does mean that you’ll always have virtually every sound you need on hand. You name it!
Here are some sounds you’ll find:
- A classic whirling organ which comes with the click noise and leakage.
- A glossy EP.
- The old-school SH-2 analog synth.
- And many many more.
And to make these sounds even more exciting, you also have loads of effects to make them fleshed out and even more beautiful. But we’ve already talked about that. So, moving on…
Super Portable, Battery-Operated Keyboard
The Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ is ready to gig anywhere thanks to its compact, lightweight design. With all the features packed into this keyboard, Roland practically works some serious magic to make this as portable as it is.
Also, being compact, there’s absolutely no limit to where you can set up your keyboard. No matter how small a space you have to work with, maybe an apartment or your dorm, this keyboard works.
And what’s more? This keyboard not only runs on a power adapter, it also runs on batteries as well. With 6 AA batteries, you can effectively use this keyboard with or without a power outlet close to you.
iPad Editor App – Remote Control
The Roland VR-09 V-Combo is synced to an app – the iPad editor app. And with this app, you automatically get intuitive control of the keyboard’s sound engines remotely.
Yep, right there, on the comfort of your sofa and using nothing more than your touchscreen, you can alter whatever you want on your keyboard. And that’s thanks to the integrated iPad Editor app.
Pros Of Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ
- Lightweight, compact, and portable keyboard.
- Comes with loads of high quality sounds.
- Controls are very intuitive and quite easy to navigate.
- Also runs on batteries which makes the keyboard usable without a power outlet.
- Solid, high quality build.
Cons Of Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ
- The effects come with limited controls.
- This only comes with two audio outputs.
- A waterfall-style keybed plus aftertouch would have been a nice touch.
This is a really impressive keyboard and it’s great for the traveling musician. It only weighs in at 12 pounds which makes it super lightweight. Plus, since it can operate on batteries, it won’t matter where you are, you can always use this.
The sounds and controls on this keyboard are also other aspects of the keyboard that are really commendable. The controls are super intuitive and the sounds are pretty great.
The keys though aren’t the best there are. They might be great for playing organ/synth sounds. But they don’t come with an aftertouch, so this can’t work as a digital piano.
Generally though, this keyboard does well in our books. Well worth the money.
2 thoughts on “Roland VR-09 V-Combo Organ Review”
What kind of speaker system is needed? Do speakers come with the unit? If not, what is recommended?
I’ve been running with a VR-09 for about 2 years now, gigging regularly with blues and rock bands. If you’re running a regular amp, any decent combo amp or PA system will work. I used to run a mono old Fender KB 100 which sounded pretty good. A stereo setup would be better as you would get a better Leslie effect, tremolo on the EPs and so on.
You will need to tweak the organ sounds to suit your own style and tastes.
The Leslie is pretty damn good – however adding a Ventilator or Lester will take it to the next level.
I’m currently running it through a Leslie 2101 and it sounds sweeeeeet …
There are 2 downsides to this little rig. First is the action – great for organ… crappy for piano (but I’m a crappy piano player so … meh) the second downside is you can’t separate the organ engine from the other sound engines. By this I mean send the organ to a Leslie, AND the other sounds to a stationary amp. If/When this gets implemented it will bring the VR series to a completely new level IMO up there with the Nords/hammond and the other big boys.