The Roland TR-808 Drum Machine
Drum machines became especially popular in rock music during the 1980s, but they never fully replaced the live session drummer.
Prince and one-hit wonders [[xref:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Men_Without_Hats|Men Without Hats|Men Without Hats]] used the Linn LM-1; the first drum machine to incorporate digital samples, it cost about $5000.
Roland also produced the analog TR-808, which cost $1000. Though the TR-808 didn't see much action during its initial 1980-1984 run, its price plummeted as newer drum machines came out, making it perfect for budding but budget-minded hip-hop artists like the [[xref:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beastie_Boys|Beastie Boys|Beastie Boys]] in their 1986 debut album "Licensed To Ill". The TR-808's sound lives on today in albums such as [[xref:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kanye_West|Kanye West's|Kanye West's]] 808s and Heartbreak.
Photo: Courtesy of [[xref:http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Roland_TR-808_drum_machine.jpg|Eriq|Eriq]]