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Roland TB-3 AIRA Touch Bassline Synthesizer

Get Roland's meticulously re-created TB-303 synth bass -- and tons more sick sounds -- in a pressure-sensitive Touch Pad that plays like an instrument. Rate and review this product
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A Touch-based Bass Synth and Sequencer -- Inspired by the TB-303!

The Roland TB-3 AIRA Touch Bassline Synthesizer is a classic Roland bass synthesizer re-imagined. Internally, the TB-3 is a faithful recreation of the seminal Roland TB-303 Bass Line synthesizer -- an instrument that changed dance music forever in the early '80s -- while the exterior of the TB-3 has been completely redesigned to fit the modern world with an illuminated, pressure-sensitive touchpad for key input and filter control.

A True Sequencing Synthesizer

The TB-3 is a true 32-step sequencer, with illuminated beat display at the top of the unit for 16 beats -- so you'll always know where you are in the sequence. To make things interesting, Roland has added an automatic pattern generation function as well as a random pattern modification function, so you can create new and interesting beats in just seconds.

A Touchy-Feely Kind of Synthesizer

A multifunctional illuminated touch pad serves as a one-octave keyboard, while performing other functions like input for filter envelopes modulation, and controlling other synthesis parameters. Knobs at the top of the unit provide must-have controls like cutoff, resonance, and effect level, and the touchpad is pressure-sensitive, so nuances like stroke pressure will be translated into the music as if you were playing on a normal keyboard. The TB-3 isn't just a sequencer -- it can truly be played like an instrument!

Analog Circuit Behavior Technology

Each AIRA unit is authentically crafted based on the original specifications of the '80s instrument which inspired it. Using DSPs and Analog Circuit Behavior (ACB) technology, Roland has painstakingly created an exact digital copy of the original analog circuits used in the TB-303, going so far as to model the behavior of the analog circuits themselves -- allowing the TB-3 to function and sound like its predecessor. The result is a vintage-sounding instrument with a modern and intuitive user interface.

See what AIRA is all about with this video from Roland:


Features:

- Roland TB-303-inspired bassline synthesizer with pressure sensitive touchpad input
- Sounds modeled after original TB-303 sounds with Roland's ACB technology
- 134 sound patches including both original TB-303 sounds and new four-oscillator and effects-based basses, leads, and sound effects
- Knobs to control volume, cutoff, resonance, accent, and effect
- Illuminated 16-step sequencer (32 steps total, 64 preset patterns)
- Enter steps manually or craft your beats using the touchpad
- Automatic pattern generation, random pattern modification, and pattern copy functions
- Scatter function with slicing, reverse, gating, and other effects -- 8 different Scatter variations and 10 levels of depth
- Pressure sensitive touchpad serves as one octave keyboard, filter and envelope input, and continues slider controlling pitch, volume, and modulation with one finger
- Dedicated Tempo control with shuffle and tap tempo buttons
- Bright LEDs ensure visibility, even in dim environments
- Roland Analog Circuit Behavior Technology realistically models analog synths in a more affordable all-digital unit
- 1/4 inch headphone output
- Stereo or mono 1/4 inch master output
- MIDI in and out
- USB port
- Powered via included power supply or via USB

zZounds is an authorized dealer of Roland products.
- - Maximum Polyphony: 1 voice
- - Parts: 1 part
- - Effects:
- Multi-Effects: 2 systems, 10 types (COMP, RING MOD, BIT CRASHER, TREMORO, CHORUS, FLANGER, PHASER, DELAY, PITCH SHIFT, REVERB)
- Distortion: 25 types
- - Instruments: Preset Patches: 200
- - User Patterns: 64
- - Maximum Step: 32 Steps (each pattern)
- - Scatter Preset: 8
- - Controllers:
- Touchpad
- Cutoff knob
- Resonance knob
- Accent knob
- Effect knob
- - Display: 7 segments, 3 characters (LED)
- - Connectors:
- PHONES jack: Stereo 1/4-inch phone type
- OUT (L/MONO, R) jacks: 1/4-inch TRS phone type
- MIDI (IN, OUT) connectors
- USB port: USB type B (Audio/MIDI)
- DC IN jack
- - Power Supply: AC adaptor, or obtained via USB port (USB bus power)
- - Current Draw: 500 mA
- - Dimensions: (W x D x H) 240 x 173 x 57 mm (9-1/2 x 6-13/16 x 2-1/4inches)
- - Weight: (excluding AC adaptor) 820 g (1 lb 13 oz)
- - Accessories: Owner's manual, AC adaptor, Leaflet "USING THE UNIT SAFELY"
Weight, Dimensions, and Manufacturer Part Numbers
Shipping Weight: 4 lbs
Shipping Dimensions: 16 x 10 x 4 in
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): TB-3
If you have additional warranty questions, please contact the manufacturer at 323-890-3700

Product Description

Based on the wildly influential TB-303, the new Roland TB-3 Touch Bassline is a performance-ready bass synth with meticulously authentic sound and intuitive controls engineered to play.

The Lineage

Nobody could have anticipated what would happen to the world of dance music when Roland's now-legendary TB-303 was embraced by inventive musicians on both sides of the Atlantic. Since the 1980s, the TB-303 has been a staple of electronic music. It is the defining sound of Acid House and has since been the marquis instrument on an array of groundbreaking electronic dance tracks. It's not only been used to write songs, but it has songs written about it. In fact, the release of the TB-303 has been heralded as one the key events in the history of dance music. Not bad for a little silver box.

The Sound

Launched in 1981, the TB-303 continues to be an indispensable bass synth for dance music. Roland has meticulously analyzed the circuitry of the TB-303 piece-by-piece and down to the individual circuit behavior. Using Analog Circuit Behavior technology, Roland fully reproduced both the saw-tooth and square wave oscillators as well as the -18dB/octave ladder low pass filter used in the original TB-303, capturing that unmistakable cutoff and resonance character.

In addition to the faithful reproductions of classic TB tones, the TB-3 is packed with 134 sounds that live and breathe. Bubbling synth basses, hard distortion basses, trippy delay sounds and drippy effects. They're all here - and then some.

The Feel

A TB bass line not only sounds unique, but it has its own trademark feel as well. The TB pulses. It drives. It bubbles and it percolates. That's why Roland worked so hard to faithfully reproduce the Accent, Slide, and Step Sequencer behavior of the original unit. But Roland's vision went beyond simple reproduction.

The truth is, the step entry on the original TB-303 was difficult to use, the keyboard was difficult to play, and special maneuvers were required for the shuffle functions. So they experimented with a variety of prototypes in their quest to create the optimal TB interface.

Touch Pad

The new TB-3 is equipped with a brightly lit, green and red, pressure sensitive touch pad that lets you seamlessly create patterns and interact with the unit during performance. In addition to pitch and volume, you can tweak filters and even control modulation by simply pressing down on the pad with your finger. It also makes the keyboard a breeze to play.

Step Sequencer

The TB-3's evolved Step Sequencer is a snap to use and allows seamless switching between pattern creation and performance. Of course, an attractive aspect of the original TB-303 was how it would sometimes generate unintended sounds as the user maneuvered through its complex and cryptic pattern creation operation. In order to inject that element of chance and discovery, the TB-3 has automatic pattern generation and random pattern modification.

Scatter

The TB-3's Scatter function features slicing, reverse, gating and other effects, instantly creating variations, stutters, and glitches that would normally require painstaking editing in a DAW. Complex, per-step functions are triggered easily with the Touch Pad and a single finger. Keep things fresh and interesting with 8 different types of Scatter variations and 10 levels of Scatter Depth - all controllable in real-time and in perfect sync.

Features:

- Envelope modulation and decay can be controlled with a single finger
- Switch patterns, transpose, and chain patterns with finger gestures
- Internally partitioned at keyboard intervals so it's easy and natural to play in real-time
- XY PLAY (X: Continuous pitch change, Y: Volume, Press down on pad: Modulation)
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