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Roland R-8 vs. R-70
Old 24th July 2019
Roland R-8 vs. R-70

Anyone have any opinions? I've read the R8 has more balls to it's sound plus the extra outs which I don't need plus I guess the 909 hats can be found on the Dance or Electronic card which are absent from the R70. Problem is the R-8s I find including the one I just picked up look like piss. That rubberized nonsense everyone was loading up early 90's gear with just doesn't hold up over time so I'm thinking about either picking up an R8m or still flirting with an R-70 as they seem to hold up better physically. Just curious about peoples take on the difference in the two sound wise.
Old 24th July 2019
Lives for gear
acreil's Avatar

The R8 is based on the Roland U-110 and the R70 (as well as the later DR-660 and others) is based on the JV-880. So the R8 has higher quality sample playback. But which one you'll find subjectively better is harder to determine.
Old 29th July 2019
Gear Addict

I can't compare the R8 to my R70 Drum Machine. I never bought an R8, the R70 sounded better than the drums in my Ensoniq TS10 that I was using at the time. I started using the R70 for drums so my sequences would use less memory and take up less disk space. Both the TS10 and the R70 were retired when I bought a Yamaha Motif ES8. There are drum sounds on the R70 that the Motif doesn't have, but for classic rock no frills, it was more convenient to just use the Motif and store entire sequences with drums on one file.
I used the R70 for a few years and when I moved it, I carried it in a hard case, I still have a few of the PC-MCIA memory cards with it. Its in excellent condition. The limitation is how many songs you can store on those cards. The drum sounds hold up to my ears, even compared to more recent drum machines. I like the rubberized pads, i could use drum sticks of my fingers to play the pads. They are velocity sensitive and the dynamics improvement were a step forward at the time.

I sold the TS10 to a Russian in New York when they were all the Craze in Russia.

Mike T.
Old 19th May 2020
Gear Head
I've not had the R70.

I do have both the R-8 and the R-8M.

If you're (still) after the sounds on the SN-R8-04 Electronic or SN-R8-10 Dance ROM cards, I say go for the R-8M, since you can pull sounds from up to three ROM cards simultaneously. The R-8 is complicated to program to get the most from the 'human rhythm' aspects of those features; the R-8M is a sound module with no pattern or song programing capabilities. Both great, but with different strengths.

This may be helpful, regarding the R-8M:
Old 24th May 2020
Thanks much for the input. I actually ended up with all 3: the R8, R8M and R70. Happy with all but will say the 8 has more punch to my ears.
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