Linn Electronics LM-1 Drum Computer

Linn Drum LM-1 Image

This is THE classic drum machine of the 80's - it launched the drum machine revolution! The Linn LM-1 Drum Computer was created by guitarist Roger Linn and he used samples of acoustic drum sounds. At the time, they sounded great and much more realistic and they were a fresh alternative to the analog drum sounds of the '80's drum machines. About 500 LM-1's were made before the LinnDrum model appeared in 1982.

There are twelve 28kHz samples including: snare, kick, three toms, hi-hat's, tambourine, congas, claps, cowbell, and rimshot, but no ride or crash. There are also 100 memory patches! Patterns can be created in real or step time. An innovations of the time was the swing and quantize functions that appeared on the LM-1. The LM-1 is an historical synth that has a place in the sound of music from the heart of the '80's. Only 500 of these things are out there so don't count on finding one easily. It has been used by Phil Collins, Thompson Twins, Stevie Wonder, Gary Numan, Depeche Mode, The Human League, Jean-Michel Jarre, Vangelis, John Carpenter, Todd Rundgren, Prince, and The Art of Noise.

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23 Visitor comments
May 9, 2011 @ 9:00 am
1999 album is LM-1 all the way
January 27, 2011 @ 3:37 pm
If a session drummer could play like then its sounds but the unique groove even more.
October 7, 2010 @ 5:57 pm
The poster below (StudioX) who said the LinnDrum was used on Mama by Genesis is incorrect. I own the LM-1 that was used on the track. It was purchased from the Genesis auction several years ago. It has a piece of tape stuck to the top of the machine with the words Mama on it and the tempo of the track.

When musicians back in the day referred to the LinnDrum, they were often just using the short term for Linn Drum Computer, the LM-1. For example, in an interview with Men Without Hats, singer Ivan Doroschuk mentioned they used a LinnDrum on the first album, Rhythm of Youth. I wrote him and he told me it was actually a Linn LM-1 Drum Computer.
September 1, 2010 @ 12:01 pm
The phrase "LinnDrum" became a widely generic term in the early 80s for the LM1 and LM2, so some artists used the term "LinnDrum" without specifying whether they were talking about the LM1 or LM2 used in their music. The estimated value listed on this site needs another zero added to it. These are as rare as dino bones.
August 30, 2010 @ 2:03 pm
Also, this is the drum machine used on Mtume - Juicy Fruit!
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Rated 3.52 (183 Votes)

  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 12 sounds
  • Samples - 28kHz Samples: bass, snare, rimshot, hihat, 3 toms, cabasa, tambourine, high and low congas, cowbell, claps.
  • Patterns - 100
  • Songs - 8
  • Keyboard - none
  • New & Cool Functions - Quantizing, real-time programming and digital metronome
  • Control - Tape sync and Clock
  • Date Produced - 1980-83

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