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System 80 Gives Some Details On The New 808 Clone

System 80 Gives Some Details On The New 808 Clone

System 80, a small modular synth brand based in Toronto, shared some more information about the legendary Roland TR-808 drum machine clone announced in January 2017. The synthesizer is in the Eurorack format and will be available for you this fall.

System 80 TR-808

The new semi-modular synthesizer offers 5 switchable dual and 6 single voices (16 analogue drum voices in total) featuring a separate audio output for each of the dual and single voices (11 outputs) + there’s a master output with adjustable volume control. By the way, even the latest Roland’s instrument AIRA TR-8 – representing its own remake-line of percussion synthesizers – doesn’t feature individual channel outputs.

System 80 module is quite big – 60HP (equals to a 3U rackmount module) – and looks similar to its classic predecessor of the drum machine golden era. The developer promises that the very system and structure replicate TR-808 convincingly enough: even circuitry and discrete semiconductors. For example, the same kind of bipolar transistors will be used as operational amplifiers.

The basic technical specs of the device are: 11 (5+6) percussion channels with separate outputs, 16 tracks, an improved TR-style step sequencer (up to 32 steps), 2 banks x 16 patterns. Shuffle and Roll operating modes are included in order to provide efficient sound control; external MIDI triggering of drum voices is also available.

The drum machine can send trigger signals to 2 assignable trigger outputs and offers MIDI sync ability, DIN Sync, clock pulse. But the new 808 clone lacks CV inputs which is really bad, anyway System 80 promised to design a special expansion module to fill the missing feature.

The price of this semi-modular drum machine is yet to be announced though we know the approximate release date – fall 2017. Right now System 80 are busy with the final prototype which will be demonstrated no later than the end of the spring.

The unit can be purchased on the company’s official website or at the authorized retailers.

Published: 10:39 11.04.2017
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