Roland TB-3

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Post Reply
Posts: 91
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 10:46 am

Roland TB-3

Post by Syver » Sun May 18, 2014 5:37 am

Hello Everyone,

My apologies in advance for my ignorance.

I am trying out a Roland TB-3.

I have recorded the MIDI of a pattern from the TB-3 into Ableton.

Now if I want to play it back with the TB-3 how do I set things up (I/O) in Ableton to get the Midi from Ableton to the TB-3 and the Audio back into Ableton ?

There does not seem to be a "Host Mode" on the TB-3 and not much about this in the TB-3 manual.

I am on a light setup a the moment (no soundcard, the TB-3 is plugged directly into my MBP via USB).

Thanks for your help.

Posts: 91
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 10:46 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by Syver » Tue May 20, 2014 5:54 am

Not possible ?

I wonder how come none of the so-called 'reviews' I have read/watched, raving about the products, have bothered to mention that limitation.

Posts: 72
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 8:14 am
Location: Karlsruhe, Germany

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by roxxx303 » Tue May 20, 2014 12:08 pm

I have a TR-8 but I think it must be similar:

I use an ableton live-channel with the recorded midi-Clip and an external instrument-device.
Choose the right midi-out-interface in the external instrument (USB-Midi-device of the TB-3)
and choose the usb-audio-device of the TB-3 or your soundcard-audio-in-device (then connect the line out of the TB-3 to your soundcard-audio-in).
The midi-out-channel in the external-device is important!
For example the TR-8 only receives on channel 10 by Default!

Switch the TB-3 to an empty pattern or configure Ableton not to send midi-sync to the midi-out device of the TR-8.

Hope it helps!

Posts: 91
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 10:46 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by Syver » Sat May 31, 2014 11:11 am

Sorry just moved house and did not get to try it before today. Thank you very much for your help.

This is what the setup looks like : ... .54.01.png

Posts: 173
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 3:14 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by pinkpaint » Sun Jun 01, 2014 7:40 pm


Your setup should look more like that, you only need 1 midi track essentially.

By default, I am pretty sure the TB-3 is set to midi channel 2.

External Instrument is an ableton Device that is made for implementing external instruments in one track, you dont need all those excess audio tracks unless your recording your midi, in that case your only gonna need one!

Hope this helps.

Posts: 91
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 10:46 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by Syver » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:58 am

Very helpful. Many Thanks.

Posts: 299
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:34 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by nc2010 » Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:14 am

@roxxx303 As you have a TR8, do you have a small idea (it would help me much) for this : viewtopic.php?f=1&t=204518

Posts: 9996
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:10 pm

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by 3dot... » Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:06 am

how is the TB3 btw? you liking it?

Posts: 91
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 10:46 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by Syver » Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:05 am

3dot... wrote:how is the TB3 btw? you liking it?
I do. I like the sound. Eventhough I have not figured it out completely yet: Roland needs to release proper manuals for the Aira line !

Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2015 11:36 am

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by tykes2772 » Fri Jan 02, 2015 11:38 am

just bought a tb 3, looking at your set up i have the tb3 on internal instrument but the folder is empty. ableton recieves midi also makes waveforms but no recording and i have to play it via the tb 3 not laptop. i only have the usb cable from tb 3 to laptop do i need anything else.

Posts: 44
Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2016 8:21 pm

Re: Roland TB-3

Post by Alfonx » Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:45 pm

Hi all,

i own an tb3 and today i had a bit more time to spend with this device and its midi functionality.

And here comes the bad news:
I have to realize that midi recording and playback doesn't work 100% with the tb3.
The playback of my recorded midi is different - the Problem is known - but i did not know it
( ... cents.html).

So know i am thinking what to do. Obviously, I have to save my creations as a pattern IN the device.
And record them as audio. That's terrible...... :(
Loves Mashups!
Boom Bap/Oldschool, D-Trance/Hardtrance X-Plosion, House, 80s-90s Pop.
Mac & PC. Ableton Live 10 Suite & REAPER, Push 2, EMU X-Board 49, ESI Juli@

Post Reply