Original MSRP: $224
Current Price: $149.99
In 2013, Korg released the Volca Series, which included lead, bass, drum, and sample modules. The brainchild of Korg’s analogue wonder boy, Tatsuya Takahashi, these synths brought affordable and highly portable analogue synths to the market.
Sonically inspired by the TR-808, and vaguely resembling Roland’s machine as well, the Volca Beats is a throwback drum machine. And despite its obvious storage (8 patches), parameter, and sequencing (16 steps) limitations, the Volca Beats can easily do electronic music like techno and house, or handle hip hop genres that require a more minimal touch (see: trap).
Compared to other drum machines in this list, the Volca Beats probably isn’t a go-to option for seasoned electronic music producers and musicians. But, its sound is still attractive. Its limitations are often charming, allowing users to focus on the beat itself instead of getting caught up in sound design and excessive sequencing.
For the price, there probably isn’t a better option for pure beat making on this list. It’s great for complete novices as well as more experienced electronic musicians and for clear reasons is still a popular choice.