No longer just a software upgrade, Roland’s Fantom EX is a “supercharged” version of the acclaimed synth workstation

Roland Fantom EX
(Image credit: Roland)

Released in November 2023, the $199 EX upgrade for Roland’s Fantom added a handy collection of sound expansions and workflow enhancements to the company’s flagship workstation synth, but was only available as an add-on for existing owners. That’s now changed, as it’s just been announced that new purchasers can now buy the full Fantom EX experience as a complete package.

This means that, as well as all the great stuff that’s included in the standard Fantom, you also get Roland’s Analog Circuit Behavior (ACB) engine baked in. This powers the Jupiter-8, SH-101 and JX-3P synth expansions that come as standard, and the n/zyme, JD-800, Juno-106, Jupiter-8, JX-8P and SH-101 Model Expansions.

Piano fans, meanwhile, can revel (Ravel?) in the additions of the German Concert V-Piano Expansion 01 and the SuperNATURAL Acoustic Piano 3 Expansion.

Roland Fantom EX

(Image credit: Roland)

Roland assures us that the Fantom EX hardware has more than enough grunt to run these expansions and power the expanded roster of effects. There are new “studio-grade” reverbs, for example, along with updated master FX and an analogue filter.

Otherwise, it’s very much the Fantom that we know and love, so you get plenty of controls, a touchscreen, multiple sequencing and recording options, and easy compatibility with a wide range of DAWs. There’s plenty of audio and MIDI connectivity, too.

The Fantom EX comes 61- 76- and 88-note versions, known as Fantom EX 6, 7 and 8 respectively. These are priced at $3,200, $3,700, $4,200. The smaller models have a semi-weighted keyboard, while the larger one has a hammer action. 

Find out more on the Roland website.

Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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