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TB-5 Macro Touch Bass Synth (fan/dream mockup)
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TB-5 Macro Touch Bass Synth (fan/dream mockup)

The acid in the air reminded me that I had this idea sitting around for a while, so figured I'd flesh it out and put it out there, for the fun of it.

Unlike the other first wave AIRA products the TB-3 has yet to see a follow up. Here's how I imagine/wish that would be.
This is ugly and unglamorous but hopefully still clear enough:

TB-5 Macro Touch Bass Synth (fan/dream mockup)-tb-5-concept.jpg

I call it the TB-5 (ToyBox-5): Macro Touch Bass Synthesizer. It's a model above the TB-3 rather than a replacement. I'd expect this to be about as wide as a Boutique but a bit deeper, just enough to avoid cramp/tiny control syndrome.

I think the interface largely speaks for itself, at least to anyone familiar with the more recent AIRA products (TR-8S, MCs). It use the TB-3 as a base and then roughly:
- Touch pad remains the primary form of input.
- Brings back the missing 303 controls.
- Updates the sequencer to have motion record, adjustable playback options, TR-style input.
- More control and access over the effects.
- Can make and save your own sounds.
- Can customise some of the controls to suit your performance preferences.
- Not pictured: I/O that plays nice with the modular world (Trigger In, CV, Gate, and Accent Out).
What you'd expect from a recent AIRA product really.


But what do I mean by "Macro"? Here's how the sound engine works:
- You have multiple models to choose from.
- Each model is a simple synth engine dedicated to specific kind of (primarily bass) sounds.
- The oscillator section works in a macro fashion: the knobs adjust multiple behind the scenes parameters at the same time so that every tweak is significant and playable. (Like Mutable Braids/Plaits, or reface CS, and such)
- The filter and articulation/accent controls are also adjusted to fit with the model chosen.
Maybe some examples would be clearer:
- model 1 is vanilla 303, saw, square, squelch, as you'd expect.
- model 2 is modified 303, with extended/extra parameters and tweaked tonality.
- 3 is SH-101 flavored, PWM and sub-oscillator action.
- 4 is Moog-y (SH-2?) territory, big detuned saws, all the way to Taurus.
- 5 is melodic 808s, a modern staple.
- etc
These would take full advantage of the latest ACB models. The 303 sounds would be entire emulations, but the other sounds would be adapted to fit a 303 context, so they won't have the same features as the original, just share some tonality and characteristics.

You'd also have more purely digital options (or maybe DCB, wtv sounds best):
- FM
- Chiptune
- Wavetable
- etc
To round things up, there would also be some utility models (SFX, chords, etc), some more novel/recent sounds (grains, waveshaping, etc), and, as a final humorous note, Roland's best physical models of acoustic and electric bass. The ones they wished they had back in the 80s.

All in all this would be a collection of all the cliche/archetypal synth bass sounds that have made history, easily tweaked, sequenced, and played like a super 303 from the future past. A bass synth that covers all the basses, and then some. Ha!


So anyway that's how I imagine a next generation, sort of post-acid TB would be. If anybody wants to know more or has suggestions about this fantasy model just ask. This was harder to make than I thought it would be btw. I'm still unsure about some of the decision I've made there.

Anyone else have any wishes, or guesses, or, better yet, info, relating to the next TB from Roland? Would you like a TB-5?
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TB-5 Macro Touch Bass Synth (fan/dream mockup)-tb-5-concept.jpg  
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