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High-Powered Gain Stage
The RS808 is equipped with an enhanced output gain stage capable of producing much hotter signals than the original drum machine. This addition of gain stages emulates the old practice of running original drum machines through outboard amplifiers to add gain, and passing that signal through other devices to generate additional harmonics from clipping and distortion. This expanded sound palette featured in the RS808 gives you the ability to make use of an array of harmonized drum sounds with razor sharp attack, or even heavily crushed and distorted sounds. The RS808 can even go hotter than the standard levels of modular VCOs, making it one of the most useful ways to achieve big, gritty, rich sounds from the RS808 circuitry.
Tiptop Audio have also added an in-house designed dual pulse-shaper circuit, enabling you to trigger the RS808 using Trigger or Gate signals from a variety of other equipment such as clock dividers, step sequencers, or other clock/pulse sources. This design means you get the same stable sound at its peak power regardless of differences in your pulse source without the need to shape the pulses sent to the module.
Accent & Levels
Accent is what makes a beat sound natural and full of life. The RS808 features an accent input, which is a gate/trigger signal. When this accent input is not in use, the incoming gate input is routed to both the accent input and the gate input, serving two purposes. It allows you to reach the hottest drum sound possible, even when no accent input signal is connect, whilst simultaneously utilising the Accent control knob to act as a fine control for the output gain level. However, when connecting to the accent input, the gate input routing will be broken, allowing for independent control over your desired accent regardless of the incoming gate signal. Setting the knob higher will result in large gain level differences between accented and un-accented notes, where as lower will have the opposite effect. Compared to the original drum machine which featured a global accent control which affected all of the sounds on the machine at the same time, the RS808 gives you complete independent control over the accent of your sounds without compromising your other modules, giving you extensive dynamic options.
A Choice Of Four Different Sounds
The RS808 is equipped with two switches, providing a possibility of four different positions. When both are in the up positions, you get Clave sounds, while both down positions results in rimshots. Moving the left switch to "up" and the right to "down" provides you with a non-linear mix of claves and rimshots, while left down and right up delivers a short "click" sound.
The RS808's Snap knob controls the height of the internal envelope generator. Depending on which sound setting is engaged, it will have a different subtle effect, but in general will go from silence to maximum snap. This is a completely new addition to the circuitry that was not present on the original drum machine in the '80s.
The Pitch knob gives you the ability to set the frequency of the sound so it can be played in harmony with other sounds. It also provides you with the ability to shape the sound together in combination with the Snap control knob for creating new sounds. This is a completely new addition to the circuitry that was not present on the original drum machine in the '80s.
Each analog drum module made by Tiptop audio uses a well-tuned patch that utilises a T-Network of sine generators, noise sources, VCAs, envelopes, and filter circuits designed specifically for creating incredible percussive sounds. Patching each of these modular components together, Tiptop has created a tremendous way of generating specific sounds. Only the highest quality discrete parts are used, and in a minimal fashion. Combining multiple Tiptop Audio modules gives you the option to create a truly personalised sound-set with a huge range of flexibility. Whether its just for playing a groove alongside other bass-lines and other melodies, or complex switching of trigger signals on the fly whilst having drum sounds travel through additional sound processors to create unpredictable and intricate results, Tiptop Audio's premium modular design opens the doors to a whole new world of sound.