The Roland GAIA 2, a successor to the GAIA SH-01, represents a significant leap forward in sound capabilities and features compared to its predecessor.

The infamous music tech manufacturer has announced is making waves once again with the introduction of the Roland GAIA 2, a fresh take on the popular GAIA SH-01 synthesizer.

Roland GAIA 2

The GAIA 2 offers a hybrid synthesis engine for many sound design possibilities, while the interface remains accessible to both beginners and seasoned musicians.

Housed in a striking white anodized aluminium panel with streamlined knobs and sliders, Roland’s ZEN Core Engine lies at the heart of the synthesizer, which is a hybrid sound engine combining wavetable and virtual analog synthesis. As a result of this combination, you can explore a vast palette of sound design opportunities including classic analog tones and futuristic wavetable textures.

Furthermore, the ZEN Core Engine offers 22 voices and three oscillators (two analog and one wavetable), and the full-size keyboard offers 37 notes equipped with velocity and aftertouch for expressive performances.

Meanwhile, a standout feature of the GAIA 2 is its wavetable oscillator. Offering 63 morphing waveforms and parameters for wave position, phase modulation, and shaping modulation, the oscillator offers endless possibilities for evolving and dynamic sounds.

In addition to the wavetable oscillator, the GAIA 2 includes two virtual analog oscillators that pay homage to Roland’s rich history of synthesizers. Offering basic waveforms like sine, triangle, sawtooth, square, supersaw, and even noise, you can use the Shape knob to manipulate these waveforms before blending them with the wavetable oscillator.

The GAIA 2 also embraces Roland’s Model Expansion technology, giving you classic Roland instruments and sounds in the synth. With the pre-installed SH-101 Model Expansion and access to Roland Cloud’s library of iconic synths, the GAIA 2 becomes a powerhouse capable of emulating legendary sounds.

One of Roland’s biggest focuses for the GAIA 2 is usability, and as a result, the synth offers a one-control-per-function interface. Consequently, this minimizes menu diving and makes sound creation an intuitive process.

Then, the addition of the touch-controlled Motional Pad makes for easy real-time parameter morphing and dynamic manipulation. Further, the GAIA 2 includes an array of modulation options such as multiple envelopes and LFOs. Equally as useful are the sequencer and arpeggiator, while the Random Pattern feature adds an element of unpredictability.

Roland’s dedication to effects is evident in the GAIA 2, which includes over 50 MFX effects, a dedicated chorus section, and a reverb/delay section with a shimmer chorus algorithm.

Moreover, the GAIA 2 has a number of connectivity options like USB-C, but the synth even functions as an audio/MIDI interface which makes for easy integration with production software and hardware. The GAIA 2 also supports Roland Cloud Connect, enabling wireless access to Roland Cloud content.

Pricing and availability

The Roland GAIA 2 is available now for $899.99 from the Roland store and online retailers.