The 606 is an analog drum machine from 1982, originally built to accompany the TB-303. The original drum machine's sound is similar to an 808, but perhaps a little more unique. The bass drum, hi hats and toms are classically analog and warm, and the hi hats and cymbals are unbelievably groovy and organic sounding. The 606 can be heard all over early Plastikman, Aphex, Autechre and more.
One of the unique aspects of the 606's sound is the internal, dynamic clipping that occurs on each drum voice when you start using the accents. The louder the accent, the more clipping that occurs. The resultant sound is a crunchier, more colored transient, which has a different affect on each drum voice. This sounds great in the right context: (Synth Bass provided by our SH-1)
We sampled the 606 very cleanly (turning down the volume of each drum voice) with no EQ, through the punchy and classic API 512 preamp, coupled with a Reddi (tube DI) for added warmth. This signal path went directly to our 1/4" Otari mastering reel to reel, and into an SSL gate *after the tape machine* to add slight analog VCA punch. Finally the results reached our computer via Apogee Symphony. No plugin processing whatsoever.
In addition to the clean sounds, we captured 7 different levels of clipped accents (described above) for each drum voice, and 3 different processed Bass Drums. The processed Bass Drums were created through parallel clipping (Overstayer M-A-S), slight saturation (Culture Vulture) and Hi End EQ (API 550B, Thermionic Swift).
The end result is a dynamic, simple yet excellent sounding 606 sample pack with unadulterated, clean & classic 606 sounds, and multi-sampled clipped voices for added color and variety.
If you're after deeper and longer, tuned sub bass drums, be sure to check out the Modded 606.