Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

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Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby urbanite » Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:33 am

I'm enamored by OBs, but Is 3999 too much for a restored OBXa? Also, what would be a solid analog poly between 1 and 2K as a less expensive alternative? Any suggestions would be great.

Thanks!
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby synthparts » Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:49 am

OB-8s are cheaper, more reliable, easy to tune, have more features, and still sound great...
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby 8bit9bot » Fri Apr 18, 2014 3:07 am

well... you may not like it as much as i do but the Prophet-600 is really nice - if you dont mind the software envelopes - it's more aggressive than the Prophet-5 so i'd say it's probably similar to the OBXA - altho i have never used an OBXA IRL and only heard demos and hearsay - should be $1000-ish - if i didnt have a Prophet-5 already i'd have a Prophet-600 for sure - theres a new modification available to make the software envelopes more snappy... if you like that sort of thing
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby Rezisehtnys » Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:38 am

Prophet 600 and Matrix 6 are the cheapest "alternatives" out there. The DSI Prophet 8 falls in that range as well. It just depends on what you're wanting exactly, do you want as close to an OB as you can or are you just wanting a nice analogue poly?
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby urbanite » Sat Apr 19, 2014 1:16 am

Thanks for the helpful suggestions. It's interesting that you bring up the Prophet 600 as I heard one the other day and thought it seems to have some similar sonic characteristics, although I thought it would be as pricey as the Prophet 5. I had also considered the Polysix, as a less expensive alternative, but after reviews and listening to demos, it doesn't cut it. Basically looking for something that most closely approximates an Oberheim OBX/Xa for poly pads and a Moog Prodigy/Rogue for mono leads.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby Rezisehtnys » Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:16 am

urbanite wrote:Thanks for the helpful suggestions. It's interesting that you bring up the Prophet 600 as I heard one the other day and thought it seems to have some similar sonic characteristics, although I thought it would be as pricey as the Prophet 5. I had also considered the Polysix, as a less expensive alternative, but after reviews and listening to demos, it doesn't cut it. Basically looking for something that most closely approximates an Oberheim OBX/Xa for poly pads and a Moog Prodigy/Rogue for mono leads.

Hmm, something with CEM chips is what you're needing. Off the top of my head SCI Prophet 600, DSI Prophet 8, Oberheim Matrix 6 and OB-8, Akai AX-80, and that's about it off the top of my head at the moment. Nothing is going to sound identical with exception of the OB-8 being the closest. I'd check those out and see if any strike your fancy.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby Sir Ruff » Mon Apr 21, 2014 3:45 pm

You can still find OB-Xas in decent shape for ~$2500 (or less) if you're patient. As a devoted OB fan, I can tell you that nothing is ever going to sound like these... other than the real thing, but people have mentioned some good alternatives like the P600. OB8s have crept up in price so not significantly cheaper than OBXas these days. There's a great demo on youtube that shows the differences between the Xa and the 8--pretty easy to hear how different they sound, but if ANY Oberheim is you goal, you won't go wrong with either (and I would say the extra reliability of the 8 is a plus). People might also recommend the Matrix-6... but (like the P600) the 6-voice aspect is a real turn-off when you're trying to do those long-sustaining mega-pads... 8 voices makes all the difference.

Also, if you're not dedicated to analog and wanting to go super cheap, the Alesis Ion does a pretty fantastic OB-emulation... not so much in terms of 1:1 filter accuracy (though it sounds really good), but in terms of the natural drift aspect of the voices. Also does a really spot-on Moog filter emulation so you could kind of have both sounds in one box if you wanted.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby Rezisehtnys » Tue Apr 22, 2014 8:47 pm

You can poly-chain the Matrix 6 I believe. Would have to read through the manual again to make sure, but then you could have 12 voices or possibly more.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby commodorejohn » Tue Apr 22, 2014 9:25 pm

Yes, the Matrix-6 has note spillover capability.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby Rezisehtnys » Wed Apr 23, 2014 1:12 am

I've always wanted a Matrix 6, just to see for myself how "OB-like" it was. Really can't justify it since I have my real poly analogue I can't sell, and have gone to VA for live use. Always something more logical to buy.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby commodorejohn » Wed Apr 23, 2014 1:59 am

I've never gotten to use one of the big OBs myself, but judging by other people's demos, it's not really the same sound. The Matrix-6 has a more restrained character than your big late-'70s-early-'80s VCO polys, almost delicate at times. If the OB-series is a big gooey cinnamon roll, the Matrix-6 is a glazed donut, sonically. If that makes any sense.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby scottrod » Wed Apr 23, 2014 3:45 am

I love my OB-Xa, but the Waldorf Q gets more air time.
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Re: Oberheim OBXa vs. ???

Postby Sir Ruff » Wed Apr 23, 2014 11:26 pm

Ah, ok.. didn't know about the spillover capability. That's pretty cool.

And like C'John surmised, the overall trend of Oberheim synths is one that leads toward "refinement" and polish, with the M6 (and then the M1000) being the endpoints.
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