Replacement switch assemblies for Roland TR-808 Start/Stop and Tap functions. This replaces the previous Cherry MX switch assemblies with new Futaba (Japan) Key switches. This is a big improvement as the original switch caps fit very nicely. Consists of new Futaba switch and adapter pcb to fit original Alps footprint. Cost effective way to replace the worn out switches on your 808.
The original Alps key switches used in the 808 have been out of production for many years and have become very difficult to find. They are also not easy to repair satisfactorily and failing Start/Stop and Tap switches are now very common. I have obtained a good quantity of these Futaba key switches - they are unused new old stock and have a very similar feel to the original switch. The adapter pcb allows them to fit the original Alps footprint. Fitting these switches is fairly straightforward... take care with alignment and verify that the switch cap doesn’t foul the casing when reassembled. If necessary, the height of the switch can be lowered by removing the spacers on the pcb pins. I recommend fitting the 808 pcb to the front panel temporarily and verify the positioning of the replacement switch to make sure you’re happy before soldering it in to place.
Price is for 2 switches.
Alternatively, if you are concerned about originality, I have a limited number of original Alps switches available Here
*IMPORTANT* If you are ordering from outside the U.K please select “International Shipping” during the PayPal checkout.
Note: Requires soldering. Please only attempt switch replacement if you are confident you have the skills to do so. If in doubt ask a synth tech to do the work for you.
Tech Tip: If you would like to repair your own switches take a look at Robin Whittle's excellent TR-808 info page where he details the various types of switch used in the 808. The original white stem Alps switches are fairly tricky to repair - they are sealed and have to be dealt with carefully. These switches lose their conductivity through use, time, build up of oxidization etc and will stop responding, usually when their resistance exceeds 10k ohms. Carefully cleaning the contacts is usually enough to reduce the resistance significantly - often down to tens of ohms - obviously the lower the better but anything less than 1k ohms is fine and should be achievable by cleaning. For longevity it's obviously better to replace the switches, either with the later Alps switches or with new replacements such as the Futaba key switches.
(My thanks to Daniel Beardsmore for providing key switch information)