Roland TR-8S and TR-6S are feature-rich digital drum machines, now they ship with a free TR-Editor/librarian for organizing and designing sounds.
The Roland TR-8S is an 11-channel drum machine that offers drum modeling of classic machines (808, 909, 707…), FM drum synthesis, and sample support in a solid device. All this is combined with modernized XOX sequencing including parameter automation.
If you want a lot of it in a compact, mobile form, you have to go with the TR-6S, the little sister of the TR-8S. With 6 channels only, the same engine built-in but without individual outputs on the back, it gives you a lot for on the go.
Both have, however, a major disadvantage. Designing or organizing your own sounds/kits/patterns can end in a long menu diving adventure. Roland remedied this today in the form of free software.
The TR-Editor is an official, graphical editor and librarian from Roland for the TR-8S and TR-6S drum machines. It gives you full access to all parameters and controls of both instruments across five easy-access tabs. The overall page offers the parameters that are mapped to the hardware interface (tune, decay, a mappable parameter, volume per instrument), as well as the complete sequencer.
Then, you get remote control to each sound generator via the instrument page. This section helps you to design very quickly your own signature sounds. On the EFX page, you can program the reverb, delay, and master fx processor and adjust precisely the effect sends.
The last two pages are dedicated to your kits and patterns. You can not only organize your sounds/kits/patterns here, but you can also design your own from scratch. The built-in sequencer with the full motion engine also makes easy pattern writing possible. No menu diving.
In the case you don’t like your kits or patterns, Roland added both undo and redo in the TR-Editor for quick revisions and comparing ideas. And of course, it has a librarian functionality that offers everything you expect from it. You can create/rename/save patches, kits, and projects quickly from your computer keyboard. Clever, all of this happens in real-time, meaning the hardware takes over the changes directly.
A great update for the Roland TR-8S and TR-6S. This makes drum sculpting definitely more fun than via the hardware unit, especially on the small TR-6S drum machine. There is no plugin version so far, but I hope that Roland will deliver it later as an update.
The new editor for the Roland TR-6S and TR-8S drum machines is available now as a free download from Roland Cloud. It runs as a standalone editor/librarian on macOS and Windows.
More information here: Roland
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