Roland MC-303 Groovebox

Roland MC-303 Image

The original groovebox for dance/techno! It's got 303, 808, 909, Jupiter, and Juno sounds. It is a sequencer arranger with looks inspired by the original 303's and 808's... Not to mention it includes real-time Filter Cutoff, resonance, panning and arpeggiator. With this box alone you can become a techno music maker!!! It sounds pretty good and has an unbeatable price (around $500)!!!! Though it's been swept aside by the MC-505, JX-305, EG-101 and Yamaha RM1x, it's still a good entry-level machine for those of you on a budget or just starting out. It has been used by ATB.

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82 Visitor comments
June 20, 2013 @ 11:43 am
After spending some more time with this, I would seriously disagree with anyone who says that it's "thin and lifeless". This thing has a really warm quality about it (see the video below). You can't really say Roland lost their way with this... because it was the first of its kind that spawned a pretty large market for 'grooveboxes.'

Things to keep in mind:
1) No individual faders, hard to change part volume quickly.
2) Somewhat confusing user interface (especially with save states)
3) Limited polyphony, notes cut out often
June 17, 2013 @ 12:10 pm
It's simple... but not really. It's limited, but has some fun features too. I'd say Roland did a pretty good job with this little guy. You can check out what I came up with two days after buying it (for $100):

March 23, 2013 @ 4:57 pm
Had this one for awhile. Got deep into it and was glad to get rid of it. Another thin, pretty lifeless unit from a time when Roland had lost their way. Some sounds were ok, but on the whole, it was a real disappointment.
March 4, 2013 @ 8:25 pm
Hey lovely peeps... been recovering from spinal injury for 5 yrs... am now jus starting to play out and back producing... found my 303 beauty in a cupboard and its been battered a bit from the last move of house... desperately need it servicing!! Anyone know of where i can het it serviced please? Im desperate to get it sorted! Cheers peeps, Peace & Bass! :-)
February 19, 2013 @ 6:09 am

i recently bought a second hand mc - 303 groovebox and i received it in the post. i used it for 3 hours everything was working ok i was able to use the samples in it and to work out a tune. but then when i turned it off and went to turn it back on i got this on the screen,

CURRENT - (NC) - NEXT - (303)

it doesn't let me go through the samples or do anything it is just stuck on CURRENT - (NC) - NEXT - (303), i have also tried to do a factory reset and it won't let me do it either.

any help on this would be much appreciated

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  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 28 voices
  • # of Tones - 448
  • # of Drum Sets - 12 (inc. 808, 909)
  • # of Instruments - 16 part multitimbral
  • Effects - Reverb, delay, chorus and flange
  • Arpeg/Seq - Sequencer : 8 tracks, 10 songs, 120 preset & 50 user patterns.
    Arpeg: 200 RPS phrases
  • Keyboard - 12 buttons
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1996
  • Resources & Credits
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