Well, it's finally a time for me to resort to a review of a synthesizer I use. This time, it'll be of one of the hardware synthesizers I use: the Roland JV-2080.
The Roland JV-2080 would be a late '90s workstation synthesizer module. It prides itself on 64 voice polyphony, though it can easily be lowered by most sounds using more than one oscillator.
In some ways, the 2080 is the bigger brother of the 1080. The 2080 has a large LCD screen, which, in my experience, removes the need for MIDI librarian software beyond patch storage. All of the 1080 presets are included, and there are also a few additional banks of sounds, most notably a General MIDI bank.
Probably the biggest plus about the 2080, however: it is extremely expandable, especially for its time. It holds the record for number of SR-JV80 expansion ROM cards accepted: 8 at once! Two of my own slots are taken with the first two SR-JV80 cards (Pop and Orchestral 1, both of which will be covered at a later time).
My only major gripe as a JV-2080 user is the performance mode. Obviously it's meant to play multiple sounds at once without mandating the user have multiple units, but the output distorts a bit in the process, at least with my own unit, when you have multiple patches playing at once. Still, it's better than the multi mode for the Korg TR-Rack, which doesn't even allow automatic copying of the effects from any patches in a multi (the 2080 permits up to three).
Despite that one flaw, the 2080's sounds were used in quite a few game soundtracks especially. For instance, it is impossible to play Halo: Anniversary and listen to the original 2001 soundtrack without hearing several 2080 patches: the "Library Suite", for instance, is ridden with 2080 pads and sound effects.
Overall, a classic hardware synthesizer of the late '90s and early 2000's.