Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0xb0x

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Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0xb0x

Post by serv » Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:22 am


<object width="480" height="385"><param name="movie" value=" name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="480" height="385"></embed></object>

Not sure if this video has been submitted before, but here it is. The two are almsot identical. If you were to just hear one of them alone, you probably won't be able to distinguish the one from the other.

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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Yatmandu » Thu Apr 29, 2010 3:28 am

I saw that a few days ago, and they're different (resonance/q difference), but no more different than two 303's (or two x0x's for that matter). So yeah, more or less the same thing!

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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by prophei » Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:04 am

hmmm, this one is tough. i agree that they are very close. i have owned a 303, and have built a x0x (with the right transistors). i am very happy with my x0x actually... but when i hear that they are so close that they are within the variances of the 303's... i dunno, i am not totally sold. i wish i could be more scientific about it, but to me, there is some sort of quality that is different with the 303's. a sample comparison is never going to be accurate cause it is the sum of the total sound that is established while actually playing with the parameters... i dunno, it IS different to me.

that said, it is slight... and maybe not that important. the x0x is so close to that vibe that i don't generally find myself thinking "if only i had the original" while writing. still, there are 303 riffs i have heard that i know my x0x won't quite hit. to it's credit, there are tons of 303 that the x0x DOES hit right on the money.

i think that overall, the important thing is that a copy is never really the same thing... but it may still do all the things that made the original special. the x0x certainly does this. in most cases you can not tell the difference. it is only because i owned a 303 that i know some places seem harder to get to... but are they better, or just different? i think they are different, and only slightly enough to never be a worry.

adafruit rocked it on the x0x. i can't imagine anything getting that close... and for that, i thank them.
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Alex E » Sat May 01, 2010 1:08 am

And yet people still drop big money for 303's.

But let me just say I think the price for the original has decreased somewhat since the x0xb0x came out.
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by ninja6485 » Sat May 01, 2010 7:29 am

it would be a lie to say that i think the xoxbox sounds identical to the 303. in the video, the 303 sounds brighter at times, crisper at times, more textured, and more powerful IMO. maybe they should try aging them for a few decades. it works for wine...
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by th0mas » Sat May 01, 2010 3:11 pm

Youtube's audio quality is not made for such a comparison

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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Sir Ruff » Sat May 01, 2010 4:39 pm

th0mas wrote:Youtube's audio quality is not made for such a comparison
of course it's not, but the fact that you can still hear a difference supports what most people seem to say about them. But damn, it certainly sounds close enough for me! In some ways, it literally sounded as if only difference was something simple like the internal cutoff point for the xox being lower than the 303. With further internal tweaking, it would seem like they could be gotten even closer.
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Automatic Gainsay » Sat May 01, 2010 4:54 pm

If I were a person who would ever use or want to use a TB-303, I would be heartened by how frequently the x0xb0x sounds distinctly like the TB. (although there were also some distinct differences)
Sir Ruff wrote:In some ways, it literally sounded as if only difference was something simple like the internal cutoff point for the xox being lower than the 303. With further internal tweaking, it would seem like they could be gotten even closer.
That's what I thought, too.
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by prophei » Sat May 01, 2010 10:20 pm

i dunno if it is a cutoff point or something like that. if you look on the adafruit boards, this stuff has been broken down to a science. i just think they are different. my guess that it has more to do with the fact that the 303 has much smaller boards that are crammed together. they are built like total s**t... and i think it makes the circuit a little unstable and dirty. my guess is that the total of these kinds of differences is what makes them have a slightly different character.
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Zamise » Sat May 08, 2010 4:07 pm

Did my ears decive me and he called it a "zox box"? I've been calling it an "X oh X box". I learned something new.
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by prophei » Sat May 08, 2010 4:27 pm

i have always heard it at "zox"
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Stab Frenzy » Sun May 09, 2010 3:08 am

yeah it's pronounced "zocks-box". it says it right there on the ladyada website.

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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Ashe37 » Sun May 09, 2010 5:09 am

If i had a bit of money to waste I'd get two 303s and do a response video called " The Definitive Roland TB-303 vs Roland TB-303 shootout"

My bet is you can find two 303s that sound as far apart.

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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by sam » Sun May 09, 2010 8:24 pm

As A 303 user...What can the xox box do that the 303 can't..?
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Re: Side by side comparison of Roland TB-303 and Adafruit x0

Post by Ashe37 » Sun May 09, 2010 8:54 pm

Save you about a grand?

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