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Roland Octapad SPD-30 - White Reviews

4.5 stars based on 17 customer reviews
Questions about the Roland Octapad SPD-30 - White?

Questions about the Roland Octapad SPD-30 - White?

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Sweetwater Advice

  • Shawn Fitzgerald

    I originally bought an Octapad because I wanted to add special sounds to my acoustic kit live. Roland's factory sounds make it particularly attractive, and while the pads are super playable, I love that I can use triggers connected to my kick and snare to play sounds. It's exactly what I wanted and more! What surprised me the most about the Octapad is that it's also a perfect practice tool. One of the ways I use it is to record troublesome rhythms, slow them down, isolate parts, and work my way up to tempo.

  • from St Louis Mo April 27, 2017Music Background:
    Drums & Percussion , currently playing in 4 bands

    Roland SPD 30

    This is the third Roland pad that i have owned.
    I started with an SPD 8, then purchased a SPD 11,
    now have an SPD 30.

    Absolutely incredible!

    A quality piece of equipment, with amazing sounds!

    None better!

  • from Indiana May 22, 2016Music Background:
    Professional Musician

    Octapad SPD-30

    Don really likes it. Versital, Easy. Size is great for small spaces and gigs. Easy to transport.

  • from Deep East Texas October 27, 2014Music Background:
    guitar, Dobro, pedal steel, harmonica, bass and recording engineering

    A great alternative to humping around acoustic congas

    My percussionist has a lovely Latin Percussion conga set with a matching LP bongo pair mounted on the same stand, along with cowbells, and who knows what all -- she's a percussionist, right, and any thing you can hit with your hands or a stick is fair game -- but there are times when we don't have the room for all her acoustic instruments at a gig.

    The answer is the Roland Octapad: many drum kits (she mostly uses the Cuban, which includes timbales, something missing from her kit).

    I have a fair amount of experience with drum machines, starting with a mid-80s Yamaha R-something that had 8-bit samples (!) through a more modern Alesis SR-16 and I have done a fair amount of recording drum kits, so I know what the real thing is like.

    I plug it into a Genz-Benz Shuttle 3.0-10T combo amp, which has proven to be a good choice: some of the samples in the Octapad go 'way down in the frequency spectrum.

    The thing that blew me away was the fact that the pads are touch-sensitive. Varying your hand or stick attack changes the sound, just like the real thing, and sometimes in organic, surprising ways.

    The only issue is that she's not used to hearing the sound coming out of the speaker instead of off the heads, but all of bass/guitar players know about that.

    The kit selections are varied, and there are probably a lot of the kits that will never be selected, but too many is better than not enough, right?

  • from Nashville January 9, 2014Music Background:
    Former professional guitarist


    I gave this to my son for Christmas. He is in love with it. We also bought the Roland kick drum trigger - also fantastic. He's using it stand-alone and integrated into a hybrid drum kit. Fantastic. And the Sweetwater service? Bar none the best in the biz.

  • from Canfield, Ohio May 10, 2013Music Background:
    hobbyist, and a little bit of everything else...

    Roland Octapads

    a set of these added to your drums bring a whole new demention to your sounds... its amazing what these sound like...

  • from Brooklyn, NY April 10, 2012

    Excellent Drums

    Octapad SPD-30 is an incredible instrument. In the past I used to program drums with mouse and small MPC pad, but is no fun and results were robotic and without feeling.

    WIth the Octapad and drum bass and hi-hat pedal I use it just like a drum-kit but without using so much space, have a lot of fun playing drums (no more finger drumming) and produces very real, organic, energetic drum sessions.

    As a plus, the Octapad provides MIDI clock all the time, which I am using to sync the LFO of my Moog Little Phatty synth. Really cool!

  • from Austin, MN January 2, 2012Music Background:
    Semi-Pro Musician

    Excellent Unit, Great Feel and Sounds

    The amount of sounds in this guy are practically staggering. Want some Asian sounds? Got 'em. African drums? Yep. Timpani? Of course (and great samples at that) A little lacking on Acoustic drums but still an excellent machine. The pads feel great and the display is very crisp and legible.

  • from Honokaa HI. USA October 28, 2010Music Background:
    Owner Big Island Waves, LLC

    BE sure to get the FD8 Hi Hat control pedal

    I have a small studio on the Big Island of Hawaii. I don't have room for a full kit, But with the KD7 Bass Drum pedal and the FD8 Hi Hat control pedal you can have the best size to sound drum kit ratio ever created !
    Many Mahalo's to Bob Mondok ext 1384 ,for setting me up with the best bass drum pedal I have ever used.(it's a Pearl).... and for all the help along the way.

  • from Indianapolis, Indiana September 28, 2011Music Background:

    Octapad !!

    Awesome Drum pad. So glad they came out with a new model last year. I have been waiting for it. I have the SPD 20 also, but ungraded to the SPD 30 recently. The SPD 30 is leaps and bounds ahead of the SPD 20. With the new screen you can see everything laid out, Much eaiser then older roland drum Pads. Very fun to play, also has USB which is great. Overall coudn't ask for much more. (Maybe a touchscreen color screen on the next one.)

  • from Melbourne, Australia May 4, 2010Music Background:

    block rockin' beats

    Roland and Sweetwater music have done it again for me. Great product and price. Had it for a day and can't keep the kids off it. This unit has the typical cutting edge sounds and features from Roland. Will compliment my drum maschine from N.I. Can't wait to use it one day in a live performance. Also like to thank my Sweetwater sales engineer Dennis Konicki. Will be placing another order real soon.

  • from Sacramento April 30, 2013Music Background:

    Great pad

    Nice pad very versatile , the loop phrase feature is why I bought this.
    Paired with my SPD-20 I have unlimited sounds, performance and recording capability. GP to the Roland site to get version 2 upgrade

  • from Altoona, Pa December 28, 2011Music Background:
    Church musician

    Octapad SPD-30 Great !!

    I have owned most of the previous Octapad series and found that this was definitely the best of the lot. My favorite feature is the ability to lay down multiple tracks. Having been a drummer for over 40 years I have found this to be the least expensive way to get great sound compared to having to buy a full Roland Drum set. I also play acoustic guitar and this has been great for making a quick tray to play with!
    Wonderful product.

  • from Southern California July 4, 2010Music Background:
    Pro musician

    Finally... a new Multi-pad from Roland

    After riding the SPD 20 into the digital ground,(10 years!) Roland has finally come up with a new multi-pad. This unit is all about digital percussion, world percussion and the phrase loop function. Drum and cymbal sounds are limited, probably contributing is the 160 instruments less than the spd 20. So, if you are thinking that sample improvement might make this a stand alone kit...forget it. Playing the two pad banks with different instruments does get you some additional sounds, but Roland wants you to buy this AND a TD-12, (or TD-20) which would be the perfect combo. This pad has so many cool sounds, you can almost write a song right out of the box! It does include sounds from the TD-6 and a few from the 20, but mostly new stuff. The effects are very good and I like the rotary dials the change parameters FAST. I needed a wide variety of unusual percussion sounds, so this was a good investment for me. If you are expecting equally abundant and cool drum sounds, you could be disappointed. In summary, this is an excellent add-on multi-pad for a drummer needing cool percussion and a good variety of digitally generated sounds.

  • from Maui, Hawaii September 14, 2013Music Background:
    retired percussionist

    pro equipment which requires time to learn

    Excellent piece of pro equipment with excellent samples but not simple to use & requires quite a bit of time to learn. Much more difficult than the drum pad sets by Roland to use & requires studing the user manual. Excellent sound samples of various percussion instruments but wish there had been more drum kit samples. If you are a percussionist you will love the samples but if you are looking for drum kits suggest you purchase one of the Roland drum kits which have a better variety of kit samples & is easier to use.

  • from Las Vegas, NV July 24, 2010Music Background:

    Much improved Octapad but Roland is still holding back

    I have stepped through several Octapads over the years and every time they improve on one area, they take away from another. When they moved into the SPD-11, they eliminated the edge sensors so when you would miss a pad, the entire instrument would sound. You have seen the great features of the 30, but what if they had an attachment to use an LED light to plug into the usb port, for even more lighting? Why so few sounds? Why not the ability to add sounds or pull sounds right from a thumb drive? Why not balanced outputs? Why not an internal power supply? Why not buttons you can tap with your sticks instead of having to use your fingers? Why not a clear rubber area that illuminates in the middle of the pad so your aim is accurate? Why not one edge trigger? Why are these always set up for right handed drummers?

    Sure, a lot of these features are not on other pad controllers, but the Octapad is supposed to be the leader in this area. And yes, this is the best Octapad ever, but why not...

  • from Dallas, TX USA July 7, 2012Music Background:
    Semi pro musician

    Best sounds, easy to use, but BAD for live gigs

    I wanted SSSSSOOOOOO bad to like this unit. The best sounds of all digital drums in my opinion. It was also very easy to use, very easy to find and setup sounds, very easy to change pitch. Average user could spend 30 minutes on it without the manual and have a great idea on how to get around on it. My gripe is that it's best for studio work. I used this several nights at live shows with a live drummer. It would fire sounds on its own when the band started playing. Im guessing it reacted very sensitively to vibrations. I sent the unit back and asked for a second one. The 2nd one did the same thing. There is an addendum to the manual that comes with the unit about adjusting its sensitivity. Therefore, Roland knows its an issue. I adjusted the sensitivity per the addendum, but it didn't solve the problem.

    I went with the Yamaha DTX Multi 12 instead and it works and sounds great. It can hold its own sound wise to any unit. However the Yamaha is not as easy to use and it just doesn't quite have the Roland 808 sounds and a few others that I love... I think the sounds on the Roland are the best... I just can't use it live.

  • from NY,NY July 8, 2011Music Background:

    A potentially great product falls short

    Well this is a well built product. Good fit and finish, durable, and sensitive. But, the built in sounds leave something to be desired. First there aren't that many real drum sounds. I would say more than half of the sounds it has are gimmicky. I would rather have more snare sounds or drum kit sounds. Snare drum sounds are very limited. No metal snares are included from what I remember. And it doesn't look like Roland sells any sound add-ons for it. The one thing that is really cheesy is the audible metronome only works when you are recording mode. There is no way to use the unit just as a metronome. Hmm was this done on purpose? The functionality is there you just can't use it. My advice is unless you are short on space or want something portable, pass on this and get a drum module and add a couple of pads.


  • Andy Miller

    The venerable Roland Octapad has returned to market wearing a brand new suit. But it isn't just good looks that'll get drummers talking; it's great sound quality, V-Drum trigger pad technology, and tri-layer phrase looping, that'll make this a triumphant return.

    As I do with most line-level gear, I checked out the new Octapad sound-set using Etymotic Er-4p ear-canal phones because they're very accurate and isolated.

    Popping through the different kits, I hear a nice array of sounds ranging from standard drum kits & world percussion to synth basses, glocks, atmospheric sounds, and various effect noises to annoy the neighbors with. About 600 great samples in all to keep you smiling.

    The new pads are large and made of thick, soft rubber that has the perfect amount of bounce and keeps striking noise to a minimum. Better yet, they will not cross trigger despite having enough sensitivity to track a buzz roll.

    That by itself makes this a great buy, but Roland has also added the ability to record phrase loops with up to three layers, each with a different kit. It's stupid fun and improves your chops in the process.

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