The BK-7m has several significant features from the TOTL Roland's, and some stuff even THEY didn't have!
First of all is the TWO independent Mastering Tools sections (EQ and compressor) for style/smf section and played Keyboard Parts. So, no longer will one 'duck' the other if it gets too frisky. Then, even MORE importantly, you get the return of the per-Part and per-drum sound 3 band parametric EQ, which was the main thing that made the OS3 G70's sound so much better than the original. Then you now have THREE independent assignable MFX sections, which I believe is one more than even the E80! And the MFX's can be assigned to style/smf or keyboard Parts at will.
For Dennis, the Performance List (the new version of the UPS) can now address 999 Registrations (or Performances, as they now call them), so there's probably a good chance that MIDI can call them up like they used to on the old 144 UPS list.
The Makeup Tools section can now do detail editing of the drum kit sounds just like the E80/60/50 and G70, which was something they dropped from the Prelude and GW-8's Makeup Tool section, which I always thought was a big mistake (maybe they can do an OS update to add them back?). And it has the return of the Cover Tools from those arrangers, which was the fastest, easiest way (in combination with the Makeup Tools for fine tweaking) to radically alter an existing style and turn it into something cool and fresh with little effort.
It also has a pretty powerful MIDI section, with the MIDI SETS feature from the big boys, allowing you to store up to eight totally different MIDI layouts (channels Rx and Tx, zone reception, controller reception, etc.) and associate those with different Performances. And, for those that like life simple, it has a nice dumb 'one controller, one MIDI channel' mode, that maps all the splits and layers and chord recognition zones onto it.
What it is missing is the Harmonizer (which as hardware ones have got SO good lately, might not be a bad thing), the HB organ section and the SMF Mark/Jump ability. Of those, only the Mark/Jump ability is the one I would miss heavily. The rest is very nearly a complete E80, at only a grand!
Bloody incredible! Imagine if Yamaha made a Tyros module at that price! (not going to happen, mind you)... And, maybe Fran's rumor of a 76 Juno cased version of it might actually happen. What a bargain!
I am seriously thinking of getting one of these to put at the business end of my KX-5 keytar, just for fun jamming and the odd guerilla action fast gig where the G70 would not fit! Kudos, Roland...
An arranger is just a tool. What matters is what you build with it..!