Chronic tinnitus is a brain network disorder with involvement of auditory and non-auditory areas. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over the temporal cortex has been investigated for the treatment of tinnitus. Several small studies suggest that motor cortex excitability is altered in people with tinnitus. We retrospectively analysed data from 231 patients with chronic tinnitus and 120 healthy controls by pooling data from different studies. Variables of interest were resting motor threshold (RMT), short-interval intra-cortical inhibition (SICI), intra-cortical facilitation (ICF), and cortical silent period (CSP). 118 patients were tested twice - before and after ten rTMS treatment sessions over the left temporal cortex. In tinnitus patients SICI and ICF were increased and CSP was shortened as compared to healthy controls. There was no group difference in RMT. Treatment related amelioration of tinnitus symptoms were correlated with normalisations in SICI. These findings confirm earlier studies of abnormal motor cortex excitability in tinnitus patients. Moreover our longitudinal data suggest that altered SICI may reflect a state parameter, whereas CSP and ICF may rather mirror a trait-like predisposing factor of tinnitus. These findings are new and innovative as they enlarge the knowledge about basic physiologic and neuroplastic processes in tinnitus.