If I had unlimited cash I would go onto eBay right now and buy every single drum machine I could find. The next best thing is a good sample collection. Puremagnetik has an interesting subscription model that delivers you monthly “Micropaks” of sounds all ready to go in Ableton Live. This month they hit my sweet spot with some nice 80s digital drum machine sets. Here what you get:
Korg DDD-1: A programmable drum machine from 1986. Includes 18 drum sounds with a famous 12-bit crunch. Alesis HR-16: One of Alesis’s first drum machines manufactured in 1987. Includes over 40 unique drum and percussion sounds. Kawai R50: Legendary 12-bit sound from 1988! Includes a selection of over 20 dirty drum and percussion sounds. Sound: A very rare Soviet era drum machine manufactured by Zhitomir electronic factory in 1989. Includes sampled percussion sounds with a tightly compressed flavor. – puremagnetik.com
For more info including a video walkthrough and audio clips: click here
This week saw the release of the new Waldorf Blofeld keyboard synthesizer. I was thinking about posting the info here but since all the other music tech blogs have it up I thought why bother. I do like that it has sample playback and a nice German white/steel design but something in my mind whispered “booooring!”. I know the synth is well capable in the hands of a good songwriter but I want something in my studio that’s a bit more unique.
This morning I did my usual coffee and troll through the mighty Matrixsynth blog and saw the photo above. The Kawai K1M is a 16 voice digital sound module from 1988. I pretty much like any record released that year so this thing has to sound good. Of course this is completly subjective but I bet if you made a song using only K1M sounds it would very interesting.
I have a Yamaha TX81Z hooked up in my studio and even though I have several FM soft synths when I use the real thing people pick out the sounds it made and ask about them. So even if you have the software Wavestation or FM8 you will get a different color by recording something like the K1M into your DAW.
There is always a risk when buying used gear but if it works out you’ll never have to pay for a software update. The best thing? It’s got a $75 USD Buy it Now price! Check out the auction: click here
Check out some user reviews of the K1M at Harmony-Central: click here