Roland TR-505 Rhythm Composer


I bought this TR-505 because I wanted to find out if I liked drum computers. This particular one had a few minor issues. Some trigger pads didn’t work and it was a little dirty.

This is the smallest and most basic TR drum computer. It’s bigger relatives are the TR-606 (which looks almost the same), the TR-707 and the MASSIVELY popular TR-808 and TR-909.

The last two are completely analog while the cheaper 505, 606 and 707 are digital. Digital meaning that they play back samples while the analog ones actually create the drumsound on the fly through pretty complex circuitry.

If you ever see one of these at a flea market remember that they are worth 2500 euro’s each:

808-Drum-Kit roland_tr909

As for the 505: I cleaned it, opened it up, cleaned the inside and cleaned the contacts, reassembled it and it works now. I must say that it sounds very cheesy 🙂 Really.. I think the only reason this is cool is because it’s a member of the TR series. Some people heavily modify the 505 so that you have some tweaking options and it can look like this:

IMG_3235 IMG_3237

Images courtesy of

Vintage synth’s rating of this drum computer is 2/5 ‘Humdrum’ while the community rates it at 4/5 stars..

My rating: Meh. This is not for me.

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