Roland TR-08 Drum Machine Hands-on Demo At Knobcon

At Knobcon 2017, we talked with product specialist Peter Brown about the new Roland TR-08 drum machine.

The Roland TR-08 Rhythm Composer is a Boutique-format version of the original. It uses analog circuit modeling to recreate the original’s sound and has a scaled-down version of 808’s interface.

The TR-08 offers 10-channel audio via USB, trigger out and can run on batteries.

Pricing and Availability

The Roland TR-08 has a street price of about US $349. See the Roland site for details.

9 thoughts on “Roland TR-08 Drum Machine Hands-on Demo At Knobcon

    1. I heard they are going to burn the remainder stock, and as the one involved in public service advertising I just wanted to chime in and warn against touching drum machines that are set on fire, as that can potentially cause a scorch and unpleasant sensation, in some cases megrim and constipation.

      Having said this, I also heard that sales of fireproof gloves reached their all-time maximum — which gets me back to the times when Yamaha was publicly burning minimoogs to celebrate the DX7 supremacy. No one really tried to do something about it then, though, as analog wasn’t cool anymore.

      Only one guy looked troublous about it, as his fireproof gloves got into a minimoog or something, and he was worried he may need those in the future, on The Legendary Roland Aira Burning Day.

  1. Don’t understand this boutique mini button layout philosophy.
    For live? No way. Too small!
    In the studio? We have plug-ins.
    In the bathroom? Not waterproof.

    1. Most people don’t play live OR have studios. It’s squarely aimed at the amateur enthusiast market who might fiddle with it at their desk or on the sofa, then pack it away. That’s the main market for music gear.

  2. The USB audio is so riddled with latency, it’s practically unusable. There’s about a full 32nd note delay on the incoming audio. You can’t sync it to anything

  3. The only thing I always wonder about these TR rehashes, is the actual Clock, which in my opinion is the soul of the devices (PPQN and sloppiness due to the DIN Sync / Analog Pulse / Ancient CPU). Are these modelled or completely left out of the “modelling” in favor of a straight up 24 PPQN “new” digital MIDI Clock?

    1. 808’s are tighter than a gnat’s ass synced to DIN.

      The myth that jitter or something else contributes to its ‘feel’ is BS, along with the idea that old CPUs weren’t capable of tight sequencing.

      Old sequencers running on ancient CPUs are generally tighter than modern computers with DAWs, when it comes to sequencing external gear, because old machines weren’t multi-tasking.

      Innerclock Systems has detailed measurements for the 808 and a bunch of old devices at their site, and the 70’s and 80’s engineers did well with what they had.

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