Unfortunately the midi retrofit was expensive. By the time 'Floodland' was being written, Andrew had spent all the ready cash on a computer and a sequencer, and was looking for a reasonably priced midi drum machine with a tighter snare drum. So he got a Yamaha RX5 for the snare sound (the kick was quite tight too) and wrote the album with that. "Having already abused the sampling delay units of that era (and some very complicated chains of painstakingly-tuned Drawmer gates) to trigger captured drum sounds, the first dedicated samplers were a godsend. Until then, even the AMS delay unit had a maximum seven seconds of memory, and that cost a fortune. A rare treat. Mostly we had only had access to Bel units with a couple of seconds at 8 bit resolution. Both had to be triggered by hand or audio key."more
I love the snares and claps on this machine. The stock tambourine is one of my favorite tambourine samples that I use. It has discrete outs for each drum, which is really nice if you're doing more than grabbing one shot samples. Hard plastic pads get loud and clicky when playing things in live, which can be annoying, but it's a small price to pay.
I must be honest, if I hadn't developed sound cartridges for this unit (Retrokits RK-001) I would probably not use it that much (although the RX5's sounds are iconic too) but now I can play custom and 808s, 909s, 606s,... on this machine it has become a stable clock in my setup. Loads of pattern memory, 80s style editing but hey. Stable as a rock.