Roland VT-3 Voice Transformer – Rock Rock Planet Rock!!

Roland VT-3 Voice Transformer
Roland VT-3 Voice Transformer

Over the weekend here in Nagano-city, I picked up the new Roland VT-3 Voice Transformer on display at Shimamura music. They had just received two in stock and was lucky enough to buy one to enjoy over the weekend. They had one setup in the store which I tried out and was instantly impressed. I know the VT-3 doesn’t have midi and I also understand so far there is no way to sync much with it, but that is ok. What this does to your voice is really cool and it will sit nicely with my TC-Helicon Voice Live Touch setup. In a couple of weeks the new Roland TR-8 and TB-3 should be available also but I’m not sure yet if I’ll pick those up or not. I actually was mainly interested in the VT-3 because I felt it would be great for creating vocal phrases and effects over analog synth jams and songs.

BOSS VT-1 Voice Transformer
BOSS VT-1 Voice Transformer

I used to own the BOSS VT-1 Voice Transformer but sold it after a short while. It didn’t really sit well with me in the mix and I felt it was rather limited in just creating robot and changing the pitch of my voice. The formant didn’t do much for me either, however there is reverb which is nice. However, the VT-3 is a whole new machine and instantly I felt it was very musical when playing around with it.

I also thought it was extremely easy to use and the size could sit on one of my analog synths quite easily. You also had additional effects such as Synth, Lead, Bass, Megaphone, Radio, Scatter, Auto Pitch, and Vocoder.

What impressed me the most about the VT-3 was the sound and how easily I felt it could be added to a song or groove. Switching the rotary dial allowed you to easily create different characters or vocal phrases on the fly. Limitations might be the lack of more presets to store patches. As I mentioned earlier there is no midi to sync the Scatter effect although that “might” work over USB. It might have been cool to have an on board looper like on the Boss RC-505, but I understand all that stuff likely would have increased the price. For live performance though, having this thing on my Korg Polysix or Juno-60 is going to be real fun.


2 thoughts on “Roland VT-3 Voice Transformer – Rock Rock Planet Rock!!

  1. Hi Jim!

    Thanks for your report. I am also thinking about buying it. I still have my VT-1 and I am happy with it but the additional Vocoder mode is very interesting.

    A little error is in your report: The VT-1 isn’t missing Reverb! Look at the photo you linked – the right potentiometer says REVERB, and the reverb quality was very nice and noisefree.


    1. Hello Peter! Thanks for the comment and correction about the Reverb on the VT-1. You are absolutely correct!

      The VT-1 was a very good machine and I did enjoy it very much while I had it. Likely it was because I couldn’t fit it into my music at the time that I decided to sell it. I probably would have used it more today if I had it, but they are quite expensive now. Maybe the price will drop now that the VT-3 is out, not sure.

      The VT-3 is very nice though and with the limited space I have to carry equipment around and place it on my main syths, the VT-3 can cover quite a bit of ground. I’m looking forward to trying it out on stage.

      Thanks again!! – Jim

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