At its core, the Roland MX-1 Mix Performer is a great mixer with built-in effects and controls that are excellent for both live performance and studio use. It is an 18 channel audio device, and the effects can be sequenced using TR-style buttons. These features alone make it a good value for the price; however, recent updates have added even more functionality!
The MX-1 has an External Mixing Mode that allows it to control specified audio output channels from a DAW. It allows Volume, Mute, BFX, Tone and more to be applied per channel in the MX-1. Effects can also be added in the MX-1 using the MFX.
Ableton Live Mode extends this functionality even further, turning the MX-1 into a controller. It allows clips and scenes to be launched by pressing the 1-11 pads at the top of the MX-1. The Tone/Filter knobs can be used to adjust the Send levels in Ableton Live. A track can then be selected, armed and soloed with the Select, BFX and MFX buttons.
It is easy to switch between Ableton Live Mode and External Mixing Mode by pressing the two Scene Memory buttons (Recall and Store). This allows for fast switching between the two modes, making it possible to edit in both modes during a performance.
You will need to use firmware version 1.04 or newer on the MX-1, and Ableton Live 9.2.3 or newer.
Connect other instruments to your MX-1 over USB with AIRA Link. The MX-1 has always supported other AIRA devices, but now it supports a range of other Roland synthesizers.
Both audio and MIDI can be transmitted over USB using AIRA Link. Set the instrument’s USB driver to “Vendor” and MIDI sync to USB. Then restart the instrument, and it can be plugged into one of the USB inputs on the MX-1.
Here is a list of the supported devices:
- JD-XA Analog/Digital Crossover Synthesizer
- JD-Xi Interactive Analog/Digital Crossover Synthesizer
- JUNO-Gi Mobile Synthesizer
- JUPITER-50 Synthesizer
- JUPITER-80 Synthesizer
- FA-06 Workstation
- FA-08 Workstation
- JUNO-DS61 Synthesizer*
- JUNO-DS88 Synthesizer*
*You will need to use firmware version 1.03 or newer on the MX-1, and 1.04 or newer to use the JUNO-DS61 and JUNO-DS88.
Jacob Watters is the Synth & DJ Product Sales Specialist for Roland Canada.