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The TD-3 is a little less compact than I initially thought it would be. However, it is still incredibly light and highly portable. I plugged it in fast with just one mono audio output and a power cable. In a matter of moments I was listening to some incredible classic acid bass lines!
The sound and tone of the TD-3 is spot on. I don’t think I would be able to distinguish this from an old Roland TB-303 in a blind taste test. The saw and square wave forms hit the mark and delivered that old school sound we all love.
We gently unpacked it and gave it a good test run for you. We can’t be giving away gear unless we know it works!
Inside the box:
Not inside the box:
At first I was slightly confused as to how to actually sequence the TD-3. I’ve been working in a DAW for almost 20 years and have all but forgotten what sequencing was like on an old school synth. You can sequence the TD-3 a few different ways.
By far the easiest thing for me to do was open up Maschine and create a sequence pattern from there. You can add the synth as a MIDI output via the USB cable. Keep in mind that you still need to use the analog output from the TD-3. It doesn’t double as an audio interface. Using Behringer’s Synth Tool (software download) I was also really simple to use and made saving patterns to the TD-3 easy.
I was also able to quickly set up the TD-3 as a slave to Maschine. You could do this with Ableton Live or your preferred sequencer. This means that the patterns being played are coming from the TD-3, but the MIDI clock is sequenced to a master clock. Translation: it was synced to Maschine in my case.
At just under $150, this Roland TB-303 tribute is a great buy. I suspect we’ll see them going on sale before too long. However, I wouldn’t hold out on grabbing one up at this already low price.
Some people have a problem buying Behringer. I have been a strong critic for a long time. The #1 problem I’ve seen is that most of their gear won’t hold up to the abuses of a gigging musician. This little desktop unit, if properly cared for, could last a very long time. After hearing the synth and playing with it for a bit, I was starting to feel inspired! That’s what it’s all about in the end anyway, isn’t it?
Was I able to sit down and make music with this little guy? Would I add one to my studio? Absolutely.