The big news is the addition of an FM synthesis engine, which Roland says makes the TR-8S “the most complete drum machine ever”. This promises the likes of metallic hits and harmonically rich percussion sounds, and you can sweep through sonic variations using the Morph control.
You can tweak the FM depth, ratio and feedback, while the FM sounds can be blended with the classic TR tones for all-new rhythmic goodness.
There are also new effects - Saturator, Freq Shift, Ring Mod and Spread - all of which can be assigned to control knobs for sound shaping. The workflow has been improved with reload functions that restore pattern and kit elements to their stored states with quick actions, thus giving you more beat manipulation options when you’re creating sounds and performing live.