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my favorite sampler
The prices on these and the 404s have been shooting up lately, (probably because of the whole lo-fi hip hop scene that's gotten so popular lately) but they are so worth it. I think I paid around $265 for mine, which was probably a little too much, but I had been looking for one for a while. The sequencer on it is pretty terrible, but I just use it as either an FX box to color my samples before they go into my MPC-2000, or sequence it with the MPC. I borrowed a 404 from a friend a while back, and while it's basically the same as the 303 with more memory and a couple of extra FX, one thing the the 303 has over it is the long/lo-fi sampling modes. The 404 only has the lo-fi mode, which gives that really crunchy SP-1200 sound, but the 303 also has the long mode, which gives it just a bit of downsampled crispiness, which sounds great on drums. I haven't even mentioned the vinyl sim, godDAMN, just perfect on drum breaks.
Well worth the money
This cheap sampler is really perfect for old-school Hip-Hop type beats. The bitcrusher gives some nice grittyness, the vinyl simulator is great too. The 26 effects are really where this unit shines. The built-in sequencer sucks, but at least it's there. I sequence using my MPC 2000XL, and the SP-303 compliments it very well.