Prince is mostly associated with the Linn LM-1 drum machine. Prince first used this drum machine on Private Joy from the Controversy album in 1981. Prince was known for drastically retuning the samples on the LM-1 and playing the samples through his Boss effects pedals. This created the distinctive drum sounds heard on many of his most famous records, including When Doves Cry and Raspberry Beret. Prince would use the LM-1 throughout his career.
Prince also rented a LinnDrum, the successor to the LM-1, when recording at Sunset Sound. There are reports that Prince did not like or use the LinnDrum, but Prince did regularly use at Sunset Sound. It appears on a number of Prince songs, including Take Me With U and probably Sign O The Times (tambourine and cabasa) and I Can Never Take The Place Of Your Man. It also appears on the protege albums recorded during this time. Prince later hired an LinnDrum for a session in 1988 when his other LM-1s were unavailable. Songs from this session include Elephants and Flowers, Am I Without You? and Still Would Stand All Time. The LinnDrum also appears on the Batman album.
In the late 1980s, Prince started to branch out to other drum machine sounds. He used the samples from the Fairlight CMI on Parade and Sign O The Times, including the song Sign O The Times. On Lovesexy, Prince introduced the Dynacord ADD One drum rack, controlled by the LM-1.
In the 1990s, Prince used other drum machines, including the Roland R-8 and Akai samplers and MPCs. He then returned to the Linn LM-1 for Newpower Soul and Rave Un2 The Joy Fanastic, and would continue using the LM-1 through the 2000s.