Roland TB-303 vs Bass Bot TT 303
Pharmaceutical companies spend billions of dollars to test new drugs on patients, only to make billions more once a drug is approved by the FDA for medical use. Some of these drugs are revolutionary, but many of them are simply derivatives of existing medication with a new name. The reason why these companies are able to profit so much is due to patents that can last up to a decade, preventing others from stealing their formulation and marketing it themselves.
The same types of patents exist for DJ equipment as well. The direct drive motor was owned by Technics (now Panasonic), and the SL-1200 series turntables was able to proliferate without any serious competitors on the block. Since their patent ran out, other companies such as Numark and Stanton have been able to capitalize on the design and create their own offerings.
The same story has unfolded for Roland’s TB-303 unit, which has been emulated with great detail by Bass Bott and their TT 303. There has been some skepticism as to whether or not the two instruments perform alike, but demo videos have show little variation between the two. Modern interfaces have been added to Bass Bott’s version that allow it connect to a computer and transfer information via midi control – not to mention that it’s priced relatively low.