Roland TR-8 Rhythm Performer

by Roland

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  • Roland TR-8 Rhythm Performer

    The TR-8 is a performance rhythm machine that melds the legendary sound and vibe of the TR-808 and TR-909 with features and functions for the modern age. Genre-defining sounds, classic effects, unprecedented live pattern manipulation, and solid, intuitive performance controls. It’s the TR…evolved.

    Unleashed upon an unsuspecting world in the 1980s, the TR-808 and TR-909 produce arguably the most influential drum sounds in modern music. Not only have they appeared on thousands of dance tracks over the course of three decades, they’ve helped define the sound of entire musical genres. From rap and house to techno and trance, the TR-808 and TR-909 have left an indelible mark on the art and culture of music. Roll the drums…

    In developing the TR-8, we’ve obsessively analyzed and faithfully recreated every detail and nuance of the analog circuitry of these legendary rhythm machines—the boom and snap of the 808; the thud of the 909; the robotic click of an 808 rim shot or a classic 909 snare roll. It’s all here. But not content with mere recreations, we’ve enhanced these classic instruments with capabilities that go far beyond the original units. Tune and Decay knobs are now present on every instrument, and the Bass Drum and Snare Drum have additional controls such as Attack, Snappy, and Comp. This allows for a wide variety of tones, from subtle ambient percussion to pounding dance grooves. Per-step effects and the massively addictive Scatter function take things into entirely new territory. With the authentic tone and character of the original units and new sound-tweaking capabilities inspired by legions of users, the TR-8 breathes new life into the sounds we all know and love.

    Make no mistake—the TR-8 has been carefully designed from the ground up as an instrument to be played. Every control has a solid, predictable feel, with each drum instrument having robust, “playable” faders. Numerous lighted knobs and RGB buttons give both real-time performance feedback and a striking appearance on stage. Pattern creation is creative and intuitive using an evolved version of the TR-REC method, which originated in the TR-808 and eventually became the standard for electronic rhythm programming. Based on detailed analysis of the original TR-808, the TR-REC behavior has been faithfully modeled in the TR-8. But the TR-8 goes well beyond the original, allowing you to seamlessly switch between programming and performance modes, and to introduce lots of groovy rhythmic variations from subtle snare fills to total glitch meltdowns.

    Roland TR-8 Rhythm Performer Features:

    • 16 stunning kits made up of 11 instrument types, including custom dream kits that use both TR-808 and TR-909 sounds
    • Large Tempo knob with Tap Tempo button and continuous Fine and Shuffle adjustment knobs
    • Control the intensity of the Accent function with a dedicated knob
    • Per-step reverb and delay effects with dedicated knobs
    • Mix sources connected to the External In jacks with built-in per-step Side Chain function for rhythmic ducking and gating effects
    • Scatter lets you freak and tweak your grooves with real-time control and perfect sync
    • 7 segment, 4 character LED display and 16 per-step pads with bold, full-color LEDs
    • Real-time pattern creation up to 32 steps with on-the-fly step count adjustment
    • Rec/Play modes have been eliminated, enabling seamless switching between step input and real-time pattern making and performance
    • Real-time play of 4 different types of rolls (8th, 16th, VARI 1, VARI 2) and per-instrument mutes
    • Pattern copy and pattern randomization for rapid, spontaneous creativity
    • Two assignable analog outputs and full parallel outputs via USB for total mixing flexibility
    • Full reproduction of the classic TR-808 and TR-909 rhythm machines, based on original design spec sheets and detailed analog circuit analysis of many original TR machines, including Roland’s own pristine units
    • Newly developed Analog Circuit Behavior (ACB) technology allows part-by-part analyses and faithful recreation of tonality and behavior, including the smooth variations of tone that occur when you work the controls of each instrument
    • Obsessive attention to detail, such as reproducing the original TR’s unique variations in tone that occur when multiple instruments are entered in accented steps
    • Authentic 16-step sequencer with faithful TR-REC behavior, including A and B pattern variations and the ability to play instruments and record to steps in real time
    • User Drum Kits: 16
    • User Patterns: 16
    • Steps per 1 measure: 1 – 16 steps x 2 (Variation A/B)
    • Tempo: 40-300
    • Display: 7 segments, 4 characters (LED)
    • Effects: Reverb, Delay, Side Chain
    • Nominal Input Level: -10dBu
    • Input Impedance: 100 k ohms
    • Nominal Output Level: -10/+4 dBu (Selectable)

    Instruments & Controls:

    • Bass Drum: Level, Tune, Attack, Comp, Decay, Inst Select
    • Snare Drum: Level, Tune, Snappy, Comp, Decay, Inst Select
    • Low Tom, Mid Tom, High Tom, Rim Shot, Hand Clap, Closed Hihat, Open Hihat, Crash Cymbal, Ride Cymbal: Level, Tune, Decay, Inst Select

    Effects and Controls:

    • Accent: Level, Step
    • Reverb: Level, Time, Gate, Step
    • Delay: Level, Time, Feedback, Step
    • External In: Level, Side Chain, Step

    Mode:

    • Tr-Rec, Pattern Select, Inst Play, Inst Rec, Drum Kit Sel, Drum Inst Sel

    Controllers:

    • VOLUME knob
    • SCATTER knob
    • TEMPO knob
    • FINE knob
    • SHUFFLE knob
    • PADS: 16
    • MODE buttons: 6
    • CLEAR button
    • VARIATION buttons: A, B
    • SCALE button
    • LAST STEP button
    • START/STOP button
    • SCATTER ON button
    • SCATTER DEPTH button
    • TAP button
    • Power Switch (Rear)

    Scatter:

    • Types: 10

    Output Impedance:

    • Mix Out, Assignable Out: 1 K Ohm
    • Phones: 130 Ohms

    Connectors:

    • PHONES jack: 1/4-inch stereo phone type
    • MIX OUT (L/MONO, R) jacks: 1/4-inch phone type
    • ASSIGNABLE OUT (A, B) jacks: 1/4-inch phone type
    • EXTERNAL IN (L, R) jacks: 1/4-inch phone type
    • USB port: USB type B (Audio, MIDI)
    • DC IN jack
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    Last Updated: March 27, 2018

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