Updates: July 2016

Roland G-33 Bass Guitar Synthesizer Controller

Features and Specifications:

Body: Ash
Finish: Acrylic, "Robert" brown
Neck: Maple set-in
Fingerboard: Rosewood
Frets: 21
Bridge: Adjustable
Nut: Polycarbonate
Tuning machines: Gotoh
Pickups: One Roland PU-144S single-coil
Scale: 34"
Truss Rod: Single, Adjustable
Neck Width: 1 11/16"
Body Width: 13"
Body Depth: 1 3/4"
Overall Length: 45 1/2"

Introduction to the Roland G-33:

Roland G-33

The GR-33B was packaged with the G-33 or G-88 bass guitar controller. Like the G-303 and G-808, the basic design of the bass guitar is the same for the G-33 and G-88.

The G-33 and G-88 electronics package has master volume and two bands (high and low) of active equalization. When connected to a Roland guitar synthesizer, the active electronics are powered by the synth. When used alone, two nine-volt batteries supply power.

The G-33 has a rosewood fingerboard and set-neck construction. And, like the G-303, the G-33 has nickel/aluminum alloy nichrome plated hardware. The 1982 Roland guitar synthesizer brochure notes that the G-33 has a Roland PU-144S single-coil pickup.

The G-33/G-88 bass guitar, like all the vintage Roland guitars, was built by the Fuji Roland corporation, a joint venture by Roland and the Fujigen Gakki. Fujigen Gakki (now known as FGN guitars) also made the Ibanez guitars.

Gauge of original Roland G-33/G-88 strings:

1st string (G) - 44
2nd string (D) - 62
3rd string (A) - 85
4th string (E) - 106

Links to more information:

Sound-On-Sound Magazine article detailed the history of Roland Corporation during the 1980s.

More information on the origins of Roland guitars.

1982 Roland Product Brochure - Japanese - Featuring the G-303 and G-808.

More information on dating early Roland guitar synthesizer controllers.

Download the G-33 Owner's Manual.

Download the G-33 Schematic.

Versions - Electronics:

There are two versions of electronics cards for the Roland G-33 and G-88 basses. The most distinctive difference in the two cards is the placement of the string level trim controls. On the early basses, the trimmers are placed in a verticle alignment.

On the later cards, the string trimmers are placed in a horizontal alignment. Otherwise, the actual circuit designs appear to be the same. The Roland service manual notes that basses with serials numbers 040500 and later have the horizontal trimmers, and serial numbers 030499 and lower have the verticle. Basses in the range from 030400 - 040599 could possibly have either electronics card.

Early Card Serial Number 030499 and lower
Early Card Serial Number 030499 and lower
Later Card Serial Number 040500 and higher
Later Card Serial Number 040500 and higher

Photos:






















Click on any image for larger view. Thanks to Pablo Leocata for the G-33/Synclavier photos.

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Modifications: