Roland Drumatix Modifications
A step by step guide to giving your Roland TR606 separate outputs for each percussion voice.
The Roland TR606 has proved to be one one of the most popular drum machines. It is relatively inexpensive considering the features it offers, and is ideally suited to the electronic music-based musician.
Here is a simple and extremely cheap modification which can be made to the TR606 to provide individual instrument outputs like its big brother, the TR808. The two photographs give a visual indication of what is involved.
Having dismantled the unit to reveal the electronics, a connection is made, using a short length of ribbon cable soldered between each track of the level potentiometer that's mounted on the main PCB, to the tip connection of a 3.5mm jack socket. An earth connection is also made from the edge track of the PCB to a bus bar linking the jack sockets together (see Photo 2).
The sockets are all mounted in line with the relevant level control knobs on the rear of the upper plastic casing (Photo 1). It is necessary before re-assembling the case to remove the control knobs from their spindles, to allow the sockets space. These can then be glued in place after the case is assembled back together, using an epoxy or cyanocrylate adhesive.
The instrument signals bypass the onboard level controls and main signal mixer, and are therefore controllable externally. Each one can then be processed by various effects such as phasers, compressors and echo units, and also placed in a stereo image via routing to a mixing desk. The TR606's Accent control retains control of the output signal, so rhythm emphasis may still be implemented.
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Feature by Brian Jones
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