Roland combines CR-78 percussion and 808 bass with TR-8S and TR-6S drum machines.

Roland combines CR-78 percussion and 808 bass with TR-8S and TR-6S drum machines.

Roland’s TR-8S and TR-6S: Upgrades that Take Music Production to the Next Level

Roland TR-8S

It’s always a pleasant surprise when companies continue to support and enhance their products long after their initial release. Roland, a renowned name in the music industry, has recently delivered significant firmware updates for their TR-8S and TR-6S drum machines, adding two exciting new features that have caught the attention of musicians and enthusiasts alike.

Among the notable additions in the TR-8S 3.0 and TR-6S 2.0 updates is the introduction of an ACB model of the CR-78 CompuRhythm and a chromatic TR-808 mode for constructing basslines. What makes this update particularly thrilling is the ability to play an 808 kick chromatically, expanding the flexibility of both drum machines. Previously, users could tune drum hits and samples, but it was not an easy or pleasant experience. Now, with the chromatic mode, the 8S and 6S transcend traditional percussion and open up new horizons in music creation. The TR-808 emulation, which was already available, is a staple in genres like hip hop, enabling the creation of impactful basslines, in addition to drum grooves.

Roland TR series

Another significant addition is the inclusion of the CR-78 emulation. The CR-78 CompuRhythm holds a special place in the hearts of many musicians, as it was the world’s first programmable drum machine. It boasts a unique sound and rhythm that has become a trademark for certain musical styles. The absence of a CR-78 model in the TR-6S prior to this update was one of its few shortcomings, as pointed out in my review. It is delightful to see Roland addressing this and incorporating all the original sounds and most of the preset rhythms into their new firmware, along with a few fresh additions. What makes this even more exciting is the ability to utilize the modern programming features and sound design tools available on the TR-6S and TR-8S to shape and tweak the CR-78 for contemporary productions.

TR-Editor app

Roland has not only focused on enhancing the hardware but has also catered to ease of use with software updates. The TR-Editor app on both Mac and PC platforms has received improvements in usability, along with a more compact user interface designed to optimize user experience on smaller displays. These thoughtful updates showcase Roland’s commitment to providing a seamless and enjoyable music production process.

In conclusion, the latest firmware updates for the Roland TR-8S and TR-6S drum machines are a testament to the company’s dedication to innovation and customer satisfaction. With the addition of the ACB model of the CR-78 CompuRhythm and the chromatic TR-808 mode, these drum machines have become even more versatile, allowing musicians to explore new creative possibilities. The inclusion of the long-awaited CR-78 emulation and the improvements to the TR-Editor app further enhance the overall user experience. As always, Roland continues to set the bar high for music production technology, and these updates are a testament to their ongoing commitment to delivering cutting-edge tools to the music community. The updates are available now for free directly from the Roland website, so it’s time to update and unleash your creativity.