Drum Machine Sound ROM Decoder Suite

Note: Fully developed and specialized encoding/decoding ROM creation tools for the LinnDrum, Casio RZ-1, Roland TR-505, Roland TR-626, SCI TOM, E-mu Drumulator, and E-mu SP12 are available separately.

While the sound ROMs within PCM drum machines do contain sound data, extracting this sound data is often not a very straight-forward process. All sound ROMs are headerless and cannot be opened as a normal sound file such as WAV or AIFF, but rather must be treated as raw data. Some audio programs such as Audacity can deal with raw data, however, such use requires additional (and correct!) information to be manually entered and the wave data saved out to another format for general use.

This is inconvenient even in the best scenario, but often these ROMs are encoded in peculiar ways which even Audacity cannot handle.

For example, many drum machines from the ’80s use u-law (mu-law) compounding, and although Audacity does support importing non-linear PCM formats such as u-law, such ROMs still cannot be properly interpreted.

Electrongate Promenade is one of the few options which can handle such ROMs, but has a more specialized usage which may not be desirable. Therefore, in the interest of keeping as many options open as possible, we have created a set of tools which can bulk decode ROM/EPROM binaries for any of the following machines and convert them to 16-bit WAV.

Currently Supported Drum Machines:

Linn 9000
Linn LM-1
Oberheim DX
Oberheim DMX
Oberheim DXa
Oberheim Stretch DX
Sequential Circuits (SCI) Drumtraks
Sequential Circuits (SCI) TOM
Simmons SDS-1, SDS-7, SDS-9


Multipurpose Drum Machine ROM Decoder Suite v0.2

Note: A universal mu-law decoder is also included which can be used on other machines which use the same format, or for E-mu Drumulator ROMs which are not specifically supported by the specialized Drumulator tool mentioned below.

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