TR-909 for Cheap?

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Rumbler101
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TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by Rumbler101 » Sat Sep 06, 2014 12:23 am

Hi,

I've been researching around and apparently around 2 years ago TR-909s were on eBay and other sites for about 1,000 - 1,500 pounds. Today, the drum machines are now going for a near 3000 pound price tag and most of them are definitely in-between 2,000 - 3,000 pounds.

I'm probably dreaming here but is there any possibility of getting a TR-909 for a price between 1,000 - 1,250 quid? I think it's a matter of being patient and just checking sites all of the time. A mate of mine had one for 850-odd which was an absolute steal!

If it is possible... does anyone have any good sites that TR-909s pop up on regularly for decent prices that aren't overly-inflated? They're definitely brilliant drum machines and are THE "house" boxes but those prices are ridiculous in my honest opinion.

Cheers.

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by Z » Sat Sep 06, 2014 1:01 am

You're probably not going to find a cheap 909 on a site. You best bet would be yard sales, estate sales, car boot meet, thrift store - anywhere where the seller knows nothing about its real value.
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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by c-level » Sat Sep 06, 2014 2:28 am

yep. i saw a 909 at a guitar center, the first one id seen in the flesh. i asked another more veteran synthesist if hed seen it and he said 'yeah that was the sorriest looking 909 id ever seen! the face plate was melted in...' GC still wanted $2200+ for it. save yourself the trouble and just get a TR-8!

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by bionary » Sat Sep 06, 2014 3:25 am

I just picked one up today with a Korg Mono/Poly for $2500 in Michigan. They were listed separately for $3900 for the 909 and $1800 for the Korg. After about 2 weeks of haggling, I got the price down to $2500 for both. They look good but they have some scratchy pots but I thinkI got a nice deal.

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by monolith » Sat Sep 06, 2014 5:49 am

bionary wrote:I just picked one up today with a Korg Mono/Poly for $2500 in Michigan. They were listed separately for $3900 for the 909 and $1800 for the Korg. After about 2 weeks of haggling, I got the price down to $2500 for both. They look good but they have some scratchy pots but I thinkI got a nice deal.
That's a great deal but you must be an absolute punisher! :mrgreen:

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by Syn303 » Sat Sep 06, 2014 3:20 pm

Rumbler101 wrote:A mate of mine had one for 850-odd which was an absolute steal!
i paid half that of what your mate paid for his 909.

Get a Roland TR-8 instead, it's the cheapest option of a 909 you are going to get, with a 808 thrown in too.
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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by Rumbler101 » Sat Sep 06, 2014 3:40 pm

Syn303 wrote:
Rumbler101 wrote:A mate of mine had one for 850-odd which was an absolute steal!
i paid half that of what your mate paid for his 909.

Get a Roland TR-8 instead, it's the cheapest option of a 909 you are going to get, with a 808 thrown in too.
How long ago was that? Lucky git :P.

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by shaft9000 » Sun Sep 07, 2014 2:23 am

i haven't seen a decent 909 for sale for under $1000usd since 2005
2600.solus.modcan a.eurorack.cs60.JP8.Juno6.A6.sunsyn.volcakeys.jd990.tb303.x0xb0x.revolution.
999.m1am1.RY30.svc350.memotron

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by Rumbler101 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 1:57 pm

Do the prices of machines like the 909 go down during Xmas time? Probably not, though...

...I have a TR-8 but I don't think it's that good; has no song mode, accent system is kinda weird and I don't like the fact that in-order to get a song out of it you have to mute the separate voices all of the time which is very annoying (I suppose that's why it's called a "Rhythm Performer" and not "Rhythm Composer," eh?). 909/808 kicks have no punch to them either.

It honestly felt like a machine that was to be used alongside a DAW and for messing around with during live performances -- not for studios. Of course, that is just my opinion :).

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by zoomtheline » Fri Sep 12, 2014 3:13 pm

It would be worth keeping in mind that maybe it's not all that anyway. If you don't like the TR-8, you might not like the original. It's been blown way out of proportion. It's still a basic drum machine. Sure, it's a famous now sought after sound but it is what it is, it's not the messiah, it's just a very naughty drum machine.
Seems some people are very happy with how close the TR-8 is and some have issues with different things.
If you want that exact sound down to the smallest detail then you will have to suck it up and pay if not then there are many alternatives. Remember that a straight 909 will never sound just like the record.

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by ninja6485 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 7:13 pm

It's hard to miss the potency of a 909 bass drum. If you're hearing what I'm hearing from my 909, there should be a wow factor compared to other drum machines and select emulations. The 808 needs to be a little higher in the mix of other instruments, depending on how low it's tuned and what the frequency response of your speakers is, but the average person off the street with no prior experience with gear should be able to notice that the 808 or 909's bass drum sounds significantly richer and more impressive than your garden variety drum machine or sample pack.

I'm comparing my experience with the 909/808 to:
The Bd of other roland TR's
The Bd of other drum machines listed in my gear list
The samples that came with NI machine
The Goldbaby sample packs
The D-16 software emulations
The 909 like drum machine on synapse audio's Orion(pro 9?)

zoomtheline wrote:Remember that a straight 909 will never sound just like the record.
This isn't exactly true, or at least it's not true the way that it's true for traditional instruments in a rock context. If you listen to enough Platipus and Harthouse records, or even some Tressor stuff, and then buy an 808 or a 909, you should find that you really don't need to do very much of anything to be sufficiently pleased with the sound you're getting compared with what you hear from the album. This is compared to, for instance, sitting down with a guitar rig and expecting the same level of satisfaction while attempting to achieve the tone you hear from Stevie ray Vaughn, Michael Schenker, or Tony Iommi. I've done both! The latter can be very frustrating. The difference is huge, and it is worthy to note this significant difference between the two cases. I have yet to hear the Tr8 in person, but if the emulation is as good as it is portrayed to be, all of the things that are true for the 808/909 should be true for the TR8. You should not be inclined to judge that the difference between the 909 the 707 is equivalent to the difference between the Rx-5 and the 707, that it is simply a matter of different sounds. The 909 should sound significantly more impressive, and if the Tr8 is equivalent to the 909, the Tr8 should sound significantly more impressive.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by zoomtheline » Fri Sep 12, 2014 7:50 pm

Yeah, I get what you're saying. 808/909s are of course at the top of the drum machine pile for a reason. I just feel that the hype might exceed the actual thing. Not hearing either first hand is my downfall of course but hearing the tr8 And how close it's supposed to be I still found it boring.
Just trying to play it down a bit so the dude thinks twice about spending a lot of money on something.
Maybe try and find someone with one just to make sure it's what you really want before spending that sort of money.
I suppose, it's not hard to flip one though ha.

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by ninja6485 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 8:49 pm

zoomtheline wrote: I just feel that the hype might exceed the actual thing.
Oh, I understand completely. It's hard to say just what some people are listening to, or just what they're expecting to get from the 808 or 909. You still have to put some effort into writing compelling rhythms with it. They are by no means the perfect drum machines for every genre, that's for sure! I actually use my 707 more often than my 909. I think it has nicer hi hats. The same goes for the 606!
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by Rumbler101 » Sat Sep 13, 2014 5:14 pm

ninja6485 wrote:The 808 needs to be a little higher in the mix of other instruments, depending on how low it's tuned and what the frequency response of your speakers is.
I'm curious, what exactly do you mean by putting an 808 "higher" in a mix and what does frequency response mean? In-regards to "frequency response," I think I read once that it's to do with how well speakers handle certain frequencies e.g. some speakers handle bass better than highs and sometimes bass and mids are handled better than the trebles. Is that true?

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Re: TR-909 for Cheap?

Post by ninja6485 » Sat Sep 13, 2014 6:22 pm

Rumbler101 wrote:what exactly do you mean by putting an 808 "higher" in a mix
The mix I'm talking about is the mix of the different sounds on the 808. It would be setting the volume a bit louder than the other instruments. I will sometimes have the BD volume at max and start the rest of the instruments as far down as half way, and then mix the sounds to taste, or with the song depending on what I'm doing. At first when I got my 808 I was expecting the Bass drum to leap out and destroy my speakers, but everything was set to max, so it was a lot more subtle. Setting up the mixer properly brought it to the fore.
Rumbler101 wrote:frequency response," I think I read once that it's to do with how well speakers handle certain frequencies e.g. some speakers handle bass better than highs and sometimes bass and mids are handled better than the trebles. Is that true?
That is more or less what I was trying to convey- if the BD is tuned to its lower settings, and what you are monitoring it with rolls off at or around that area, it will be hard to hear the impact of the BD. I have a set of yamaha msp5as, which combined with my room sound a little high forward, even with the appropriate settings configured on the back, so I know that if something sounds bassy on those, it will be very bassy on my gro7's or in the car. That can affect your perception of the power and impact of a really low Bass Drum, especially if you're not listening to your favorite artists through your monitors to get familiar with the sounds! I can very easily see this situation contributing to a dubious judgement that the machine in question sounds underwhelming.
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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