Oberheim OB-1

Oberheim OB-1 Image

The OB-1 is a simple and great monophonic synth from Oberheim based on the same synth architecture as the SEM. Released in 1978, it was the first truly programmable analog synth of it's time with 8 program memories.

Classic and fat sounding bass & lead synth sounds. Similar in sound and synthesis from the Roland SH-101 to the MicroMoog. It has two analog oscillators and a very capable 2 or 4 pole switchable VCF (filter) that sounds great, and a good LFO that can control the VCA or VCF. This is a very versatile monosynth, especially during its time, and makes an interesting alternative to other more common bass-synths. It has been used by Tangerine Dream, Rush, Vince Clarke, and The Grid.

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12 Visitor comments
January 15, 2009 @ 5:27 pm
I tried this personally in the mid 1980s. It is strong and fat sounding. I was very impressed. I was not too much into the small action stuff back then, but this was magnificent. I noticed that small action keyboards are coming back heavily in fashion. I think this started with the Korg Prophecy, but there was not follow ups unitl Korg started releasing many others and then others followed on and on. I see new brans and models poping up almost every month. If I wanted a small little one then the OB-1 would be me first and second choice, then MicroMoog , Korg Prophecy and Yamaha QY-70. The OB-1 is a great match if you play a Prophet 5 at the same time. Lead lines are soupy. It 's midrange sound is great on low-midrange pitch. This is not a toy. By the way this was used on record by a very popular American vintage bubble gum pop sounding new wave band in the 1980's. I love it. Wish I had one. Can't find one and haven't seen one in front of me since early 1980's.
November 5, 2008 @ 1:35 pm
The OB-1 has also been used by The Stranglers, Earth, Wind and Fire, T Lavitz of Dixie Dregs, Michael Bod [beep] er, Al Greenwood of Foreigner, Sky, Supertramp, Images In Vogue, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Comsat Angels, Moog Cookbook and Tredje Mannen (basslines; triggered from a TR-808).
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Rated 3.8 (179 Votes)

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  • 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 - Monophonic
  • Oscillators - 2 VCOs
  • LFO - LFO (Square, Sine, Sample+Hold) w/ delay, rate control
  • Filter - 2-pole or 4-pole w/ Cutoff, resonance, key track and cutoff can be driven by LFO or ADSR envelope
  • VCA - Standard ADSR envelope
  • Keyboard - 32 keys
  • Arpeg/Seq - NO
  • Control - CV / Gate
  • Date Produced - mk1 - 1978
    mk2 - 1979

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