The OB-E – An Octaphonic Sonic Adventure with the Oberheim 8 Voice
The Oberheim OB-E is our take on the legendary Oberheim® 8-Voice and the first software instrument ever to receive Tom Oberheim’s personal endorsement.
More than just an emulation, the OB-E offers a unique musical experience. Sounding HUGE, it takes the iconic Synthesizer Expander Module (SEM®) based 8-Voice (a.k.a the EVS) into new sonic territory via a raft of enhancements and additions.
The concept of the 8-Voice is actually very simple; based around a single SEM containing two VCOs with Pulse and Sawtooth waveforms, two ADS Envelope Generators, one LFO, and a magical Multi-Mode Filter. In isolation each SEM is monophonic, but in the 8-Voice, because there are eight SEMs triggered by a polyphonic keyboard, you have a superb eight note polyphonic synthesizer.
This unique Octaphonic architecture offers fresh and exciting creative possibilities to music producers, composers and sound designers for the first time in the digital realm.
700+ factory Patches saved in various categories and with tags.
The MODULE - FRONT
The core building block of the OB-E is the Oberheim SEM. Each SEM has 3 Oscillators, a Multimode Filter, 2 Envelopes and modulation controls.
The MODULE - REAR
Each SEM has both front and rear panels. The rear of each allows us to extend the range of functions programmable in each SEM.
The OB-E groups SEMs 1-4 into the LOWER MODULE mixer and SEMs 5-8 into the UPPER MODULE mixer. Individual volume and pan for each SEM can be set here along with a MASTER control for each group.
ZOOM a SEM to enlarge the interface for detailed editing. ZOOM places the front and rear of the selected SEM side by side within OB-E.
An Augmented yet Authentic Instrument
We’ve painstakingly emulated every section of the synth to ensure sonic authenticity while adding the convenience of software control over those eight SEMs. Mono, Mono Legato, Poly, Unison and Split keyboard modes are all available. Add to this the new VCO3, doubling as an audio rate LFO for each SEM, and a stack of additional performance controls via velocity, polyphonic after-touch and MPE control then you’ll begin to understand the depth of musical possibilities OB-E provides.
The OB-E allows you to scale the size of the user interface for both reduction and enlargement.
The OB-E offers a range of Global Controls including the all important GROUP edit mode. When GROUP is selected, the parameters knobs of OB-E glow green indicating that editing one parameter on any SEM is mirrored across all SEMs.
The OB-E plays in multiple keyboard modes including mono, polyphonic & unison. The keyboard can be ‘split’ with notes lower than the split playing SEMs 1-4 and above the split SEMs 5-8. Additionally, SEM 8 can be allocated to the SEQUENCER giving 3-way playback possibilities within a single Patch.
The OB-E SEQUENCER contains an extensive range of controls and functions. It triggers either monophonically or each SEM sequentially.
Delay & Reverb
The OB-E analogue style delay and lush reverb that can be routed to the UPPER MODULE, LOWER MODULE or both.
A COLLABORATION WITH OBERHEIM AND NEW ‘VINTAGE’ CONTROL
As we neared the release of OB-E®, we were contacted by Tom Oberheim and Marcus Ryle (an Oberheim engineer in the 1980s) who were impressed enough to suggest a collaboration offering support to refine OB-E and to release the v2 update carrying their full endorsement. Despite receiving several Best Soft Synth 2021 awards, working under the guidance of Tom and Marcus, we further enhanced the already incredible sounding OB-E. Refining the Detune feature and adding a new Vintage control, dials in more realistic musical inaccuracies in line with the original instrument for a truly authentic 8-Voice experience.
I was pretty amazed by OB-E, it was pretty damn close right out of the chute. It was “wow!“. I like listening to that. With OB-E v2, it’s like you have the hardware with you
NEW IN OB-E v2 (Now macOS & Windows)
The enhanced OB-E V2 is a pin sharp emulation of the Oberheim® 8-Voice thanks to the new Vintage control and a highly refined Detune parameter. In addition, it’s now available for both macOS and Windows.
OB-E V2 features a new reverb, 100+ new Patches (bringing the total to over 700), a new Zoom function for the sequencer along with a crazy new Drum Mode enabling each SEM to be triggered by a dedicated key. We’ve also added 10 drum kit Presets to get you started. If you are looking for a new analog drum machine, give it a go, it might surprise you.
CREATIVE SEQUENCER, STEREO DELAY & REVERB
And that’s not all! With the original MS-1 sequencer as a starting reference point, we’ve integrated an extremely comprehensive and creative 8-step Sequencer providing a flexibility and fun-factor unavailable via the original hardware. In keyboard Split mode with the Sequencer routed to SEM 8, the OB-E provides the ability to create a complete three part soundscape within a single Patch. An all-new routable Stereo Delay and lush Reverb provides sonically complimentary effects.
I’m in love!!! this is the best synth I’ve ever used in my life. It really is.
MORE THAN EIGHT VOICES PUT TOGETHER
The 8-Voice is not simply eight identical SEMs put together. The interaction of those 8 independent, and slightly different Synthesizer Expander Modules, plays a major role in making the 8-Voice’s sound so incredibly beautiful. The injection of these authentic inaccuracies into each of the eight SEMs in OB-E takes it to another level, one that blurs the lines between the hardware, and makes OB-E the most authentic emulation of the Oberheim SEM sound and 8-Voice instrument.
Finally, we’ve complemented our instrument with 700+ factory Patches designed by Dave Spiers and a roster of brilliant sound designers. Even better, each Patch has been tagged, categorised and is quickly accessible from the OB-E’s librarian (arrow navigation friendly).
A demo track featuring the OB-E for all musical parts and Stylus RMX for the drums.
This track uses the new Drum Mode and Matrix reverb found in the Oberheim OB-E.
All the OB-E.
Lamenting The Loss of Lyle
A single OB-E Patch created as a tribute to one of the greatest OB players.
Ready or Not
All the OB-E.
The OB-E’s “CS Evocation” patch in isolation.
A short demo featuring multiple instances of the OB-E and using Hex Drum for the very 80’s drum parts.
A Sequence & Split Shuffle (Patch)
A single OB-E Patch which makes use of the Sequencer and the Split features.
A demo track featuring the OB-E for the musical parts and Stylus RMX for the drums.
Fully featured analogues style MIDI Sequencer, Stereo Delay and lush Reverb
Upper/Lower sections can be Split across the keyboard
Extensive Velocity & Aftertouch modulation
Polyphonic aftertouch and MPE ready
The Oberheim OB-E Demo version
The trial version of Oberheim OB-E is an ideal way to test the instrument on your system before purchase. Free to download via the link below. The trial version is limited to 6 hours of use or 7 days, whichever is longer. Patch access restricted to the Alpha Patches.