Oberheim OB-8

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Oberheim OB8.jpg
The Oberheim OB-8
Manufacturer Oberheim
Dates 1983 - 1985
Price US$4395
Technical specifications
Polyphony 8 voices
Timbrality Bitimbral
Oscillator 2 VCOs per voice
Synthesis type Analog Subtractive
Filter Switchable 12dB/oct or 24dB/oct resonant low-pass
Attenuator 2 x ADSR (one for VCF & one for VCA)
Aftertouch expression No
Velocity expression No
Storage memory 120 patches
12 splits
12 dual
Effects none
Keyboard 61-key
Left-hand control Pitch
External control CV/Gate

The Oberheim OB-8 is a subtractive analog synthesizer launched by Oberheim in early 1983 and discontinued in 1985. It belongs to the OB-X product line of polyphonic compact synthesizers and is successor to the OB-Xa. The number of production was about 3,000 units.[1]

The OB-8 features eight-voice polyphony, two-part multi-timbrality, a 61-note processor-controlled piano keyboard, sophisticated programmable LFO and envelope modulation, two-pole and four-pole filters, arpeggiator, external cassette storage, MIDI capability and 120 memory patches, 24 bi-timbral patches, and used the Z80 CPU. Musician's interface also consists of two pages of front panel programmable controls, left panel performance controls and a set of foot pedals and switches.

Artists who have used the OB-8 include Alice Coltrane, in her ashram music, Boys Noize, Ou Est Le Swimming Pool, Prince, Spinetta Jade[2], Queen, Van Halen, Depeche Mode, The War on Drugs, Styx, Kool & The Gang, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Clarence Jey, The Police, Siekiera,[3] Silent Running, The KLF, Future Sound of London, Barnes & Barnes and Nik Kershaw.[4]

Notable OB-8 users[edit]


  1. ^ Colbeck, Julian (2001-05-01), "Oberheim OB-8", electronic Musician, The OB-8 was last in the line of classic Oberheim analog synthesizers that included the OB-X, OB-Xa, and OB-SX, ...", "Number produced: 3,000 
  2. ^ "Spinetta Jade's 'Alma de Diamante' back cover". 
  3. ^ "FESTIWAL MUZYKOW ROCKOWYCH JAROCIN 1986". Jarocin-Festiwal.com. Retrieved 2015-06-26. 
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 21, 2009. Retrieved January 8, 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Oberheim OB Series". Sound On Sound. September 1998. Archived from the original on 6 June 2015. 
  6. ^ Elaenia, Floating Points https://www.discogs.com/Floating-Points-Elaenia/release/7682421