The keen eye of MatrixSynth was the first to ID an unusual filing by which Japan’s Roland seeks to claim trademark protection of its iconic 303 and 808 hardware designs.
The 303 and 808 have been almost relentlessly cloned over the last two decades (you can see more than a dozen hardware clones of the TR-808 here alone). But the issue has taken on a new urgency as Behringer has announced the launch of what many are hailing as a near-perfect copy of Roland’s TR-808 machine, which will sell for just shy of $300.
Protection would cover use of the “look” of the 303 and 808 on machines, hardware, software, merchandise or any other visual representation.
Roland previously filed a takedown of Propellerhead’s ReBirth software, which was a legacy 303, 808 and 909 emulator. Shortly thereafter, Roland launched Roland Cloud as their “definitive” source for emulation of classic hardware sounds.