Roland unveils SBX-1 sync box

Roland SBX-1: the device formerly known as Sync Box.
Roland SBX-1: the device formerly known as Sync Box.

First seen at Musikmesse 2014 with a big 'Sync Box' label on it, Roland has officially unveiled what we now know is the SBX-1.

Part of the Aira range - the black and green colour scheme gives the game away - this is designed to let "computers and electronic instruments communicate and synchronize with each other". It supports DIN SYNC, MIDI and USB devices, any of which can be used as the master clock source.

You can also use the SBX-1 as the 'master sync'. It has its own internal clock, and you have hands-on control over the timing and groove. There's support for CV/Gate, too.

You can find out more about the SBX-1 on the Roland website, where you'll also see diagrams that show how you can use it to make your digital and analogue gear play nice together. Price and release date are TBC, but we'll bring them to you as soon as we can.

Roland SBX-1 features

  • Simultaneous conversion between MIDI, DIN SYNC, and USB/MIDI
  • Control external devices with SBX-1 as the master sync source
  • Shuffle adds swing to patterns generated on devices without swing like TR-808 and TB-303
  • CV/GATE jacks introduce enormous creative possibilities
  • SYNC button corrects timing errors with a single press
  • Output up to three channels of triggers or LFOs with different characteristics
  • DIN SYNC supports both Sync24 and Sync48 compatible with a variety of rhythm machines
  • Works great with the TR-8 through optimized AUX jack
  • Runs on USB bus power or with AC adapter
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.