Roland TR-505 Rhythm Composer

Roland TR-505 Image

A cheap (budget) drum machine. It features 16 drum tones which unfortunately, are only mediocre samples. Its memory contains 48 patterns and 6 songs. Unlike its TR cousins it does not have individual drum tone outputs. There is no drum tone editing capability either. It does however feature extensive MIDI implementation, even the pads will transmit MIDI data. The 505 works well with a computer and sequencer or as a stand alone drum machine. It is extremely basic and unexciting but does make a good starter or play-along drum machine. Vince Clarke and Aphex Twin has used the 505.

Roland TR-505 Image

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73 Visitor comments
November 21, 2010 @ 1:24 am
Cari Amici, ho Ricevuto in regalo il da amico delle Nazioni Unite (Rhytm COMPOSER TR-505) e mi ha Luogo perche Suoni dri bi, pero non SONO Capace di programmarlo perche non ho le ISTRUZIONI per l'USO.
Tanto per Chiedo se potete mandarmi le ISTRUZIONI in PDF.
O Other Consigli alternativi. Ringrazio Infinitamente Domenico.
e-mail - cel 331 615 9699 Grazie
September 16, 2010 @ 5:58 pm
Very simple and straightforward drum box. Not one of the sexiest ones out there but not a bad machine at all. I run this through effects, compressor and take down the higher bass frequencies and you get a pretty raw sound for oldskool sounding house/disco tunes. I bought it for 20 euros.
August 23, 2010 @ 2:33 pm
Got this machine a while ago, it's good. Like 707 sounds, mostly, but stripped down a lot. Detune the drums somehow (autotune comes to mind) and you get REALLY good Linn Sounds. It suprised me! Usefull machine, beats any samples for damn sure.
August 5, 2010 @ 10:35 pm
Had a lot of fun with mine, years ago. Fond memories of weird jams and obsessive programming (if you want to call it that). If you can get a clean one for less than a hundred bucks, eh, do!
April 7, 2010 @ 3:58 am
oops, I meant the cowbell in beginning, not the clap. Though, that sounds the same too. It's late..
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User Rating

Rated 3.85 (508 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay 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.
  • Demos & Media
  • Audio Clip 1 - Here's a short 505 drum fill & house loop, submitted by Dean Nye.

    Manual - Roland has made manuals for most of their products available as free PDF downloads.

  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 Voices
  • Oscillators - Uses Samples
  • Tones - 16 drum tones: Kick, snare, open/closed hat, hi/mid/low tom, hi/low cowbell, conga, timbale, etc...
  • Patterns - 48 user, 48 preset
  • Songs - 6
  • Arpeg/Seq - Sequencer
  • Keyboard - none
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1986
  • Resources & Credits
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