This website use cookies and similar technologies to improve the site and to provide customised content and advertising. By using this site, you agree to this use. To learn more, including how to change your cookie settings, please view our Cookie Policy
Xmas Legs Small Present Present
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
   You are currently viewing the Canada version of the site.
Would you like to switch to your local site?
Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Jan-17 > ROLAND Boutique TR-09, TB-03 and VP-03

ROLAND Boutique TR-09, TB-03 and VP-03

There’s been plenty of excitement surrounding the new batch of Roland products, and MusicTech managed to get its hands on the second wave of Boutiques. Dave Gale starts up the reboots…

MT Lead Review



Mobile Tech



Manufacturer Roland Price TB-03 & VP-03: £329, TR-09: £369, Contact 01792 702701

Key Features

Three new takes on old classics

MIDI and USB implementation, unlike the originals

Further connectivity to analogue and Eurorack equipment

Powered by batteries or USB

Sonically very close to the originals

And so it came to pass that Roland made some weird and wonderful things in the 80s, many of which fell out of favour with the onslaught of newer and cleaner sounding digital machines. The scene was set for bedroom producers with little cash to snap up last year’s bargains and do something creative with them, and that’s essentially how we got to the point where we find ourselves today, with vintage equipment priced at, and often fetching, rather unrealistic figures. The TB-303 is the most ludicrous example of this, often commanding fees of £2,500, and if that’s the sort of music you make and you need one, you might be prepared to pay it – but Roland has finally wised up to the phenomenon by recreating some of the classics, the 303 among them, and putting them in Boutique form.

These all fall into the Roland Boutique range, with a footprint similar to an original TB-303

The second coming

Let’s just run through exactly what Roland is bringing to the table here. There is the TR-09, based on the TR-909 Rhythm Composer (drum machine to the rest of us), the TB-03 based on the TB-303 Bass Line, and finally, the wild card for many, the VP-03 which is based on the VP-330 Vocoder Plus. These machines all fall into the Roland Boutique range, offering a small footprint of 30cmx12cm – which is very similar in size to an original TB-303 or TR-606, so in this regard the form factor alone, at least for the TB-03, is very similar. Some will be familiar with the first run of synthbased Boutiques from last year, so this next wave also forms a second coming for the sort of machines that many of us were yearning for. In many respects, I feel that the form is better suited to the drum machine/Bass Line size.

Purchase options below
Find the complete article and many more in this issue of MusicTech - Jan-17
If you own the issue, Login to read the full article now.
Single Issue - Jan-17
Or 399 points
Annual Digital Subscription
Only $ 3.25 per issue
Or 3899 points
Monthly Digital Subscription
Only $ 3.99 per issue
Or 399 points

View Issues

About MusicTech

New issue on sale now!