Synth Site: Boss: DR 550 MKII: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 3.9 out of 5
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Joseph Burton a professional user from United States writes:
The DR-550 Mk2 is a workhorse. I bought it new back in 1989 and I've been using it since. This little box will not die! I've used it live years ago (a-la Big Black) and still use it to demo. The only drawback is that you cant really set different time sigs with it, but with some math, you can by. The sound chip is really what I keep going back to. Its basic, punchy, and as long as you have a few AA batterys, verry portable. Yes, you have to save to tape when you program with the device, but if you use somthing like Cakewalk 4 or any other midi software from the time, you'll learn to program in software and sync with MIDI out. I still prefer proging with the box, as I can bring it around to the band and just hit the play button. This little box has spoiled me...got out and get ya one, just not mine.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Monday-Apr-16-2012 at 20:16
Al a professional user from Oklahoma writes:
I have an older Boss DR 550 with an Alesis Control pad. However I am having problems with the midi. I have replaced the midi cords twice, they will work briefly then not at all. I checked the cords and they are fine. Midi in is all the the DR 550 has. The Alesis has midi out in and thru and the cable is connected to midi out on the Alesis. Omni on is enabled in the DR550 so it should be reading the midi channel data? I have also turned off omni on to just read the midi manually and still no luck? The Alesis control pad is also set up the right way. The control pad will work with the computer via usb and a VST so the Alesis board is intact since the midi and usb are on the same board so it has to be the DR550 maybe? So any advice would be helpful, maybe someone has experienced this same issue before. Or I could be missing something in my setup. Thanks

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Thursday-Dec-01-2011 at 11:05
brett from usa writes:
I love this machine. Got it new in 1989? it works great still. DO NOT TAKE YOUR BATTERIES OUT without having the replacements ready to go. According to the manual you have 60 seconds to replace them before you loose your memory (there is no internal battery). However I know for a fact that I have taken the batteries out to clear the memeory and after some time my stuff was still there (but don't try this...). It will save to tape if your feel like doing that. Back in the day you had to do that with everything. This box is great and well worth up to $100 depending on the condition. Other people never seem to notice this but most of the dr.rhythm series will run off a boss PSA adaptor but all of the units that I have used will emit an extra hum when used with the adaptor but not with batteries. I always had to record my 550 on batteries.

sound - think Big Black, NIN, godflesh. good thick sounds. great for heavy music or to layer over other drum machines. good control over each of the sounds including pitch, tone, and decay.

The biggest limitation it has now is the lack of any midi out (because you can't beat the pattern sequencer) and an easy way to back up the memory. So... back at the time I would have given it a 5 but I'm docking a point because it is a little "old" compared to the units available today. It is still now well worth the investment.

This is easily one of the most favorite musical instruments that I have ever owned.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Friday-Dec-14-2007 at 10:22
jim blackburn a hobbyist user from london writes:
Can anyone help me here. I lost the manual some years ago. Unfortunately a friend has done some interesting programming and i need to find out how to reset back to default. Cant seem to make it do anything at the mo. So if anyone has a manual I would like to hear from them Thanks Jim

Rating: 0 out of 5 posted Monday-Jan-22-2007 at 12:20
switch2iq a professional user from asia writes:
-----good little box...decent sounds...runs on batteries...2 audio outs(mono/left...right)plus phones... good for pop/rock/industrial music...like the guy said"early NIN'...very handy,you can program anywhere anytime...DO NOT remove or let the batteries run out or else you'll lose everything,the bastard has no internal memory for that...I only use it as a module for my MC 50 sequencer...NO MIDI OUT(it is such a pain in the ass!)...wastes my time programming beats w/ my sequencer/so if you dont happen to have a sequencer forget this box,buy something else...good for beginners who are in to sequencing...if you need help about this product email me...switch2iq@yahoo.com

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Thursday-Jan-27-2005 at 07:55
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