SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

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SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby somebedroomdj » Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:30 pm

Been discussed to death over the years and of course there is the rare IISDMC reader that is confirmed to work. But what about other solutions? Anyone have their 808 upgraded with anything besides Zip?

I noticed that some magneto optical drives seem like they might have the correct specs. Anyone tried this?
Example: Optical Drive

Personally, I have tried the ADIDECF reader and can confirm that it does NOT work. Picked up a Superdisk drive awhile back but didn't even bother to try it because, as I understand it, those are slower than zip drives. And then I've seen vague references to other CF readers here and there online. But never anything very definitive. I badly want to get my 808 upgraded. :(
Synths: | Spectralis 1 | JP-8000 | Minibrute | TT-303 |
Samplers/Drums/Etc: | MC-909 | ESX-1 | SP-808 | ST-224 | MS-1
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby adekoyote » Sun Dec 29, 2013 2:57 am

"Picked up a Superdisk drive awhile back but didn't even bother to try it because, as I understand it, those are slower than zip drives."

the question is a matter of reliability....right?
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby somebedroomdj » Sun Dec 29, 2013 4:04 am

Actually, I've never had a zip disk fail on me so, for me, it's not that. My problem with the 808 is the "disk busy" error. I'll record on only 3 of the tracks and it will give the error and the audio will cut out. More or less cripples the machine for multitracking. I've used 100, 250 and 750mb zip drives and it's always the same thing.

The problem comes in because the 808 has no conventional RAM, it reads straight from the disk in real time and zips just can't seem to keep up.
Synths: | Spectralis 1 | JP-8000 | Minibrute | TT-303 |
Samplers/Drums/Etc: | MC-909 | ESX-1 | SP-808 | ST-224 | MS-1
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby Hugo76 » Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:03 am

somebedroomdj wrote:Actually, I've never had a zip disk fail on me so, for me, it's not that. My problem with the 808 is the "disk busy" error. I'll record on only 3 of the tracks and it will give the error and the audio will cut out. More or less cripples the machine for multitracking. I've used 100, 250 and 750mb zip drives and it's always the same thing.

The problem comes in because the 808 has no conventional RAM, it reads straight from the disk in real time and zips just can't seem to keep up.


Is this a problem on the SP-808EX as well?

edit: it appears they fixed the problem with the faster 250mb disks on the EX
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/aug00/a ... dsp808.htm
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby Hugo76 » Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:16 am

somebedroomdj wrote:Actually, I've never had a zip disk fail on me so, for me, it's not that. My problem with the 808 is the "disk busy" error. I'll record on only 3 of the tracks and it will give the error and the audio will cut out. More or less cripples the machine for multitracking. I've used 100, 250 and 750mb zip drives and it's always the same thing.

The problem comes in because the 808 has no conventional RAM, it reads straight from the disk in real time and zips just can't seem to keep up.


Have you tried replacing the internal zip drive with a 250mb one? When reading the SOS review, it could seem like that's the way to go. Have you installed the EX OS?
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/aug00/a ... dsp808.htm
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby somebedroomdj » Mon Dec 30, 2013 12:10 pm

Yep, running EX with a 250mb drive. I mean, as a sampler, it's it works great. I can store a huge number of samples, the actual sampling process is super easy and I have no problem triggering samples from the pads in real time. It's just when I try to automate things a bit by triggering the pads from the onboard sequencer or multitracking audio from my other machines on it.
Synths: | Spectralis 1 | JP-8000 | Minibrute | TT-303 |
Samplers/Drums/Etc: | MC-909 | ESX-1 | SP-808 | ST-224 | MS-1
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby Synthetech » Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:01 pm

I sought out that unobtainamod for a few months only to give up on it since it's about $250 for the guaranteed working units, if found at all.

There is no secret $30 unit to use.. and if a correct unit shows up in a 99c auction, it will go for $200 anyway.

So I gave up and just use it for loops, soundFX and the wild dsp FX.. plus the D-Beams are cool to use on it or in a DAW.

They are nice units, no doubt about it. but I think I'll spend $250 on something else.
I think my sp808's worth the $80 I paid for it.. but that's all I'm spending on it.

I'd probably get a hardware 8track unit with MIDI sync using a hard disk or CF drive of some sort if a multitrack playback is required in your dj setup.
Then use the 808 for loops 'n FX
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby somebedroomdj » Wed Jan 01, 2014 7:52 pm

I agree, it really isn't worth dropping a couple of hundred bucks on that one mythical reader that works. And besides, in about 8 years, I've only seen the IISDMC pop up on Ebay ONE time. I took a shot this week and ordered a PCMCIA reader that is hot-swappable and a CF adapter. Fingers crossed on that but, like you said, a $30 solution is not very likely. We'll see how that goes.

I don't use for djing at all, just trying to find a convenient way to capture phrases when I'm mucking around on the machines. And I'm probably in the minority here, but I actually like the linear sequencer on it. It's definitely a machine that could have been legendary if it weren't for the poor storage options, no RAM and 4 voice polyphony.

I hate messing with computers when it comes to music but I've bit the bullet and started teaching myself the basics of Ableton, just for tracking stuff out. Gotta say, I'm kinda liking it. :)
Synths: | Spectralis 1 | JP-8000 | Minibrute | TT-303 |
Samplers/Drums/Etc: | MC-909 | ESX-1 | SP-808 | ST-224 | MS-1
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby Synthetech » Wed Jan 01, 2014 8:22 pm

I've been twiddling with DAW's recently too and found that a very nice controller keyboard with good pads can replace the 808 quite easily.

FL Studio is what I've focused on to learn first, it has Slicex to edit phrase samples.
It can chop up audio and quickly assign each phrase to a note. Then just have your pads set to different notes that correspond to the phrase and its alot like an Akai MPC.

I still love to play around with the 808. I like the Dual D Beam(and use it with my DAW to control plugin parameters).
The FX on it are cool as well as the "Slicer" that step modulates with BPM and gets that groovy gated sound going. :)
Yea, Roland royally screwed up when they used that ZIP drive. But it's still a good unit to keep around IMO.. zip drive or not. It sits quite nicely next to my MC-505.
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Re: SP-808 - Anyone have a working card reader in theirs?

Postby Ugly Goblin Boy » Sat Jan 25, 2014 6:42 pm

I recently picked one of these up for about $99 and was pretty excited to see what it could do, I thought it would be a breeze to switch out the Zip250 drive for a multi-card reader. Then I hit the forums, and respectively hit myself. I read dozens of forums discussing the mythic IISDMC, but no dice.

Of all the forums I've read, I haven't heard a definitive answer about the Addonics multi-card readers. Has anyone tried? The specs seem right, but I know it can't be that easy.

Suffice to say, I broke down and picked up some Zip250 disks to start playing around. I really dig the machine and the effects are great, but overall I think it's an ok sampler. I was never a fan of MPCs for the same reasons. They have a lot of features, but in a practical setting I only use about 80% of what they have to offer. For that reason I stick with the SP-505. For the price point, size, and functionality it can't be beat. Sure, Smartmedia is a drag but it's only 3.3v and those can be easily found for a decent price.

So, anyone have any other ideas? What about the SCSI options?
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