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Product Showcase — November 2020

Nov 4, 2020, 08:00 AM by Rhythm Scene Staff

MalletKAT 8.5 with gigKAT 2 Controller 
The malletKAT 8.0 has been using a controller process that has been around for a very long time, hooking into a laptop in order to control the malletKAT, and to adjust, program, and store sounds, patches, and settings. Now, KAT Percussion has announced that you can ditch that bulky laptop. The malletKAT 8.5 comes with the new gigKAT 2 controller module. The gigKAT2 has 256 voices of polyphony and can play simultaneously on all 16 MIDI Channels. Just call up the User Kit on the malletKAT and enjoy. Included in the sound set are many vibes, marimbas, timpani, steel pan, chimes, bells, xylophone, crotales, and orchestral and Latin hand percussion and drum sets. KAT Percussion has also updated the playing surface to NuBAR pads, which provide better response and feel. The NuBAR pads are UV resistant, making the malletKAT 8.5 an optimal choice for outdoor performance use.

The gigKAT 2 sounds are in addition to the 127 Factory Setups designed to work with General MIDI sound Modules and 127 programmable User Setups that include features like splitting, layering, poly/mono modes, and more that come standard with every malletKAT model. All models also incorporate FSR technology, delivering superb feel and response. The MalletKAT is an expressive and powerful alternative to traditional marimba and vibraphone instruments.

“The gigKAT 2 fundamentally changes the setup and the scope of the malletKAT,” says Mario DeCiutiis. “Existing malletKAT users will not be left out in the cold. Anyone with a malletKAT 4.0 or newer can upgrade to the new gigKAT 2 module with the purchase and installation of a moderately priced new chip.”

There are three models in the MalletKAT 8.5 line. The MalletKAT Express offers a compact and lightweight 2-octave design, which can be expanded to 4 octaves. The MalletKAT Pro offers a 3-octave design and can be expanded to 4 or 5 octaves. And the MalletKAT Grand offers a standard lightweight 4-octave design that can be expanded to 5 octaves.

For more information, visit

KHS LuminoteKHS
Luminote Instruments
Luminote instruments are colorful, engaging, high-quality percussion instruments for musicians of all ages. Their modern designs feature enhanced comfort grips, vibrant contrasting colors, and easy-to-clean and sanitize plastic materials. Luminote instruments provide a rich, creative experience and encourage deeper musical interaction, whether at home or school, in the studio or on stage.

The Luminote Maracas have a slim, ergonomic design with flexible shock absorbers inside the handle that make playing comfortable and fun. Play lots of crisp, high, and low-shaking beats or tap the shell to maximize sound effects.

The Luminote egg shaker pair include one red and one blue egg that are modern in design, easy to hold, and produce a variety of sounds.

The Luminote blue agogo with an innovative, ergonomic design features a pair of durable resonator boxes in different sizes connected to a comfortable handle. Play samba-styled high and low percussion beats, rhythms, and endless sound effects. Includes built-in mallet storage.

The Luminote red vibrashaker is light weight and comfortable to hold and play. The sturdy handle provides an easy and balanced grip. Strike the ball against the palm of hand for vibrating sound effects. The resonating chamber features metal hammers that produce deep, rich sounds.

The Luminote tambourine is light and sturdy with quality jingles and an easy comfort grip. An pair of internal shock absorbers connect the handle to the rim, providing an improved playing experience with less impact on the wrist, and the hollow handle serves as a resonator box. Adjust and balance the high-low pitch with fingers, creating endless whispering jingling effects.

The Luminote drum shaker is easy to play with a wide spectrum of sound effects. Vary the sound by finger movements over the shaker’s head. Modern design enables one-handed playing with an easy grip.

The Luminote guiro is comfortable to hold and durable. A unique design produces a wide variety of sound effects by scraping, tapping and pressing on the flexible body. Mallet is secured with built-in holder.

The Luminote six-piece percussion stage pack is perfect for use at home, in the classroom, or on stage. Perfect for adding percussion effects to your musical performances. This stage pack comes complete with storage bag.

Roland TR06 drROLAND
Three Models Added to TR Drum Machine Series 
Roland welcomes three new instruments to the TR drum machine family. Based on the TR-8S, the TR-6S Rhythm Performer delivers next-generation TR performance in a compact and affordable package. The TR-06 Drumatix is the latest addition to the Roland Boutique series, blending the sounds and workflow of the ’80s-era TR-606 hardware with modern enhancements. Also based on the TR-606, the TR-606 Software Rhythm Composer expands Roland Cloud’s Legendary series with another renowned TR instrument. 

TR drum machines have driven music culture for decades, forming the backbone of hip-hop, pop, and electronic styles and defining the sound of multiple genres and subgenres. Roland continues to honor the historic legacy of the TR series and expand the product family, offering both modern recreations and innovative new instruments that bring fresh, creative possibilities to today’s musicians, producers, and DJs.

The TR-6S delivers the same speaker-pummeling, window-rattling, body-moving sound of its bigger sibling. It features a 6-track sequencer and the most iconic rhythm sounds in music history, all in a battery-powered box that fits just about anywhere. Authentic recreations of legendary Roland drum machines like the 808, 909, 707, 606, and more are included, and users can mix and match them with preset and custom samples and futuristic FM tones to create exotic hybrid kits. 

The sound of modern music owes a lot to the classic step sequencer, and the “TR-REC” variety found in early Roland drum machines in particular. The TR-6S employs the same tried-and-true approach, elevated with real-time recording and modern enhancements. And with an array of expressive effects, users can take their rhythm tracks to new levels. The TR-6S is a high-quality USB audio/MIDI interface too, perfect for mobile or minimal production setups.

The TR-06 is a detailed replica of the Roland TR-606 Drumatix from the 1980s, with some major modern upgrades. This new Roland Boutique version captures the distinctive tone and iconic look of the original while reimagining it with bold new sound-crafting potential. Users can control tuning, decay, and pan for each instrument or crank up the internal gain for each circuit model and push it into warm overdrive or aggressive distortion. An onboard compressor adds fullness and punch, while the tempo delay creates depth and space.

Like the original, the TR-06 has a familiar and straightforward step sequencer, but it’s been updated with advanced features like sub-steps for ratcheted parts, step-loop for instant pattern slicing, and more. With five trigger outputs and a trigger input, the TR-06 integrates nicely with modular setups. It's a high-quality USB audio interface too and features battery operation and a built-in speaker for production on the go. 

With the TR-606 Software Rhythm Composer, the underground ’80s classic is now available as a plug-in for DAW music production. The software version has the same sound and behavior of the original, plus powerful new features that virtually modify the circuitry for more sound choices and faster, more fluid programming.

Like the TR-06 hardware, the TR-606 plug-in offers tuning, decay, and pan on each instrument and the ability to overdrive the internal circuitry. The step sequencer has been expanded with lanes for each sound, and each pattern has eight variations plus adjustable flams, sub-steps, and soft hits.

Users can pair the TR-8S or TR-06 with the TR-606 and enjoy the benefits of easy hardware and software integration. Patterns can be shared between the TR-8S and TR-606, and the TR-06's knobs are pre-mapped to the plug-in for intuitive, hands-on workflow.

The TR-606 Software Rhythm Composer, along with all instruments in the Legendary series, is included with the Ultimate membership level of Roland Cloud. All paid levels—including Core and Pro—start with a free 30-day trial of Ultimate. In addition, any Roland Account holder can purchase Lifetime Keys for individual Legendary series titles.

To learn more about the TR-6S, TR-06, TR-606, and Roland Cloud, visit

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