Tactile Sounds TS-808 Screenshot

The TS-808 is a software emulation (VSTi plugin) of the Roland TR-808. The TR-808 service notes provide full schematics for each voice. I used them to make SPICE simulations of the circuits. I also analysed the best samples I could find (The Tape808, by Goldbaby), and tweaked the sounds until the waveforms and spectral content were as close as possible to the real thing.  Most of the voices have more parameters and a greater range than their hardware predecessor.
The TS-808 was a labour of love - I made it because I wanted to make music with it. I decided to make it available at no fixed cost because I thought others would enjoy using it too. If you use it a lot, and especially if you derive an income from your use of it, please consider making a donation. The TS-808 was made with SynthEdit.

Tactile Sounds TS-808 Demo by Tactile Sounds

Download TS-808.zip


delamar - sound, music & recording
0dB.pl - your reference level


  1. Good work.
    Thank you for the very nice plugin.

  2. Thanks mate,

    Excellent work!

  3. Just downloaded it. Thus far I am impressed.

  4. das teil is geillo.

    das 1. mal das ich freiwillig ein plugin für drums verwende !!!

    das einzige was mich stört ist das ein instrument nur ausm linken oder rechtem lautsprecher kommt :(

    aber weiter so !!! ich werds auf jeden fall öfters mal verwenden ;)

    hier noch meine myspace wenn ihr euch mal die ergebnisse saugen wollt die ich damit gemacht werden habe !!


    peace from da miami bass Dj B&L drom Speyer in Germany

    ich hab gleich bekannten die ebenfalls 808 lastige mukke machen bescheid gesagt;)

    so sry fürs viele schleimen

  5. I listened to the samples

    I found them very clean and realistic

    I will try the plug soon ;)

  6. The Cowbell is outstanding, excellent work on that. The only faithful cowbell emu I've ever seen. The rest is good too. If you do some minor tweaks to it, I'd definitely buy this thing.

  7. @ Richie: What do you have in mind?

  8. I just downloaded this and it's an amazing emulation! My only quibble... and it's pretty minor one... is the MIDI Note numbers aren't mapped to the standard MIDI notes for drums. Other that that, an amazing job. I can hardly wait to give it real tryout. Great Work!

  9. @ Christopher Clement: I'm working on an update.
    - standardised voice mapping
    - stereo outputs
    New Features:
    - panning for each voice

    @ All: Thanks for the feedback.

  10. Gonna give it a try
    shortly. I have tried and tried to
    follow your page, but for some reason
    it won't let me so I have stuck this page in my favorites. Thanks and will donate soon.

  11. Will it do analogue weirdness like a real 808, say minor variations in the clap decay each time it is triggered? Regardless thanks very much for your efforts.

  12. I am probably not the only one who will look forward to an update.

  13. I had the urge to create a quick and dirt demo of TS 808 together with a couple of other new (to me) synths. Ir can be heard here. All perc is TS808 which imho is excellent:

  14. the new interface is pretty sweet. thanks.

  15. This is a great plugin! my only issue is the kick drum. If you set your tempo to 140, and then set your decay to full, you get a lot of distortion as the notes overlap each other. IIRC, a real 808 kick drum is monophonic.

    other than that, this is a great emulation! I hope you're working on a 909 ;)

  16. @ whenmuppetsattak: Thanks. The distortion is a result of the fact that the decay time goes way beyond that of an unmodified TR-808. The sound generator is a filter, not an oscillator. There's no envelope, so even though it's monophonic, the sound is not cut when a new note sounds. I suspect that a modified TR-808 would behave similarly (although the distortion would sound a lot nicer). My advice is to pull back on the decay a little so that the overlapping notes are not an issue. Either that or use automation to drag the decay back to a sane level for the faster patterns (that was what I did with the Bass Drop demo). No plans to make a 909, I don't really like the sound all that much.

  17. Thanks for this! Excellent.

    When will the update be ready? Oh, and could you post the current version number of the plugin here on the site? So that one can always see which version is the newest available.

  18. Oh sorry, didn't see that you already had posted the update(s) including version number.

    I was just linked directly to this blog entry so... :-)

  19. Awesome This is a great plugin
    Excellent work Thank you, much!


  20. Any instructions on how to use it? I've successfully plugged it into FL Studio. I'm new to the TR-808 but I thought I should be able to just set a tempo then plug in the beats where I want it.

    Help needed.


  21. Great plug-in.

    One minor improvement would be to have some way to trigger the drum sound by clicking on the light for each drum (or clicking on the label, etc.)

    As it is, I have to trigger from a keyboard. When I don't have the keyboard hooked up, I have to open the virtual keyboard, hit a drum, then go back to tweak the sound, then go to the keyboard again to hit the drum, etc. It would be easier if I could preview the drums directly from the panel, such as by hitting the light above the mute buttons.

  22. A cool option would be to give it noisy features such as an electroic noise floor and saturation. but seriously, great synth.

  23. Pleasepleaseplease make this 64 bit. Please

  24. Very very nice! The sound is really pleasing!
    I used this plugin for 3 of my experiments some time ago... if you want to listen:


    Thanks a lot for this!!!

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  27. it's not loading files correctly in the DAW

  28. Am new to music production so I wanna ask. Do you insert it on the effects chanel of an 808 assigned to an insert chanel or on the Master of the overall mix.

  29. Would you happen to be planning a version for Apple mac OSX ?

  30. A long shot I'm sure, but I absolutely love this VST and I can't get it to work in Reaper 5. It loaded the first time, but it's crashed every time after that. If I clear cache and re-scan my VST folder it will load properly once again but then crash every time. Anybody have any suggestions? Thanks

    1. Figured it out, I had to set VST Bridging to Automatic. Huzzah!