Oberheim
Oberheim OB-X8
THE NEW
OB-X8 analog synth

For the first time in more than 40 years, a legendary analog synth sound returns

True Oberheim Sound

It sounds like a classic Oberheim because it is a classic Oberheim. Its 100% analog audio path cuts through a mix like no other synth.

The classic OB-series factory sounds that you know from countless recordings are all here. But that’s just the start: our network of world-class sound designers has created jaw-dropping new sounds just for the OB-X8. And because the OB-X8 has a clear and easy-to-grasp set of controls, creating your own sounds is as easy as turning a few knobs and saving what you like.

The OB-X8 combines the three different voice architectures of the OB-X, OB-Xa, and OB-8 into a single instrument. The individual filter types and other unique characteristics of each model have been faithfully reproduced, giving you the most authentic OB experience possible. You can even mix elements of different models to create sounds never possible with the originals. There’s never been an OB-series synth as powerful and versatile.

“I was immediately impressed with the forensic level of detail that went into the OB-X8 design and the respect for its lineage.”

Trent Reznor –
Nine Inch Nails/Film Composer

“After playing the OB-X8, I’m convinced I need it. It’s a true Oberheim, a great instrument, and a part of synth history.”

Michael Stein –
Composer “Stranger Things”

“My reaction to the OB-X8 was one of sheer joy. That sound was back and covers every filter type Oberheim ever employed.”

Steve Porcaro –
Toto / Songwriter / Composer

A Classic — Evolved

The OB-X8 is more than just a new OB-series Oberheim. It’s engineered to be the best modern OB ever created.

Creating the classic OB sound required more than just replicating vintage oscillators, filters, and envelopes.

The Oberheim design team exhaustively analyzed and recreated the complex interactions between the various components of each OB-series synth to capture their nuances and character.

The result is the most faithful, authoritative renewal of an analog classic possible — with all of the warmth, subtlety, and presence of the originals.

OB insiders know that the myriad of “Page 2″ functions unlocked the hidden power of the original OB-8.

We’ve included all of the classic Page 2 parameters and created new ones for 2022, giving you direct access to 40+ nuanced controls such as additional SEM filter modes, per-voice panning, LFO keyboard tracking, Mod delay time and envelope inversion, independent pulse width control, and much more.

The unique design of the expression levers was integral to bringing out performances that made the OB-series synths famous. 

And for even greater expressiveness than the originals, the OB-X8 features a premium-quality Fatar keyboard with velocity and aftertouch sensitivity. Dig in with both hands for sizzling filter sweeps, intense vibrato, and more.

Think Small - Play Big

The OB-X8 is now available as a powerful, portable desktop module.
It fits right into your studio, your music and your life.

For the first time ever, the new OB-X8 desktop version condenses all the sonic power of the Oberheim OB-X, OB-Xa and OB-8 into a footprint that’s compact enough for studios of any size, and convenient enough to take out on the road.

The Oberheim OB-X8 Desktop Module in a studio environment with a controller keyboard and monitor screens showing DAW tracks.

The OB-X8 desktop module boasts an identical sound engine to the keyboard version, featuring an all-analog signal path with discrete VCOs, VCAs, and filters. And with its knob-per-function sound designing experience, you’ll have immediate access to virtually all the synth’s parameters, allowing you to create your own unique sounds with ease and precision.

Although the paddles and keybed are missing from the module version, the Arpeggiator and Keyboard Split & Double functionality are maintained, so the OB-X8 desktop is ready to go when connected to your favorite controller.

A 3/4 perspective top panel view of the Oberheim OB-X8 desktop module.
Sonicstate logo

“All those years of experience brought into a beautiful, analog, big-fat polysynth.”

Nick Batt –
Sonicstate

The 2023 Sound On Sound award.

Winner - Best Keyboard / Synth

Sound On Sound –
2023 SOS Awards

Music Tech logo

“Phenomenal and flexible sounds across the board.”

William Stokes –
MusicTech

OB-X8 Tour

OB-X8 analogue synth - top view

OLED Panel

Programmer Panel

Master Panel

Control

Modulation Panel

Oscillators Panel

Filter Panel

Envelope Panel

Keyboard Panel

Levers

Arpeggiator

Keyboard

OB-X8 Desktop Tour

Find out more...

Specifications

  • 8-voice, pure-analog polyphony with saw, square/pulse, triangle, and noise
  • Two discrete SEM/OB-X-lineage VCOs per voice deliver classic punchy Oberheim tone
  • Discrete SEM-lineage VCFs deliver authentic OB-X-style tone and presence
  • Genuine Curtis filters add bold OB-Xa/OB-8 character
  • Meticulously modeled envelope responses match each OB model: OB-X, OB-Xa, and OB-8
  • The 61-key FATAR velocity- and touch-sensitive keyboard allows unparalleled expression and responsiveness (Keyboard version only)
  • Full-featured arpeggiator
  • Bi-timbral capability allows two presets simultaneously for splits and doubles
  • 400-plus factory programs, including the full set of factory sounds for the OB-X, OB-SX, OB-Xa, and OB-8
  • Integral, fanless, heatsink-free power supply
  • Real walnut end cheeks
  • High-resolution OLED display enables patch management and easy access to advanced features
  • Classic Oberheim Pitch and Mod levers allow expressive note bending and vibrato (Keyboard version only)
  • (Keyboard) Weight: 32.5 lbs.  Dimensions: 40.5” L x 16.67” W x 5.87” H
  • (Desktop) Weight: 9.6 lbs.  Dimensions: 22.0” L x 8.5” W x 4.0” H
  • Additional SEM filter modes add high-pass, band-pass, and notch functions to the classic OB-X filter
  • Vintage knob allows variable amounts of voice-to-voice variability to emulate the behavior of vintage instruments 
  • Velocity sensitivity adds expressiveness to volume and filter 
  • Channel Aftertouch adds real-time performance-based modulation
  • Enhanced unison allows variable voice stacking from 1-8 voices
  • Variable triangle wave cross-modulation
  • Over 600 user-programmable preset locations
  • Programmable per-program pan allows wider stereo presence
  • Variable oscillator and noise levels
  • Stereo and Mono outputs
  • Volume, Sustain, and Filter inputs
  • Arpeggiator clock input
  • MIDI In, Out, Thru
  • USB

OB-X8 Support

OB-X8 OLED
OB-X8 analog synth

OLED

In performance, the crisp OLED display shows the current program name along with its bank and group. It also provides easy access to the powerful “Page 2” functions for extra filter mode configurations, pan spread, LFO rate scaling, portamento modes, programmable bend box parameters, and more.

 

OB-X8 analog synth

Programmer

Select and save presets and access Global settings such as aftertouch curves, alternate tuning scales, MIDI parameters, and more.

OB-X8 analog synth

Master

Set master volume, tuning, volume balance for splits and doubles, as well as chord memory and note hold functions here.

OB-X8 analog synth

Control

Here you can set the amount of oscillator 2 detuning and add as much “vintage” character as you like. Vintage mode affects the voice-to-voice variability of OB-X8 envelopes, oscillators, and filters to replicate the behavior of vintage instruments with all of their organic instabilities. Additionally, activate and route aftertouch and velocity sensitivity, set portamento (glide) amount, and turn on unison voice stacking. 

OB-X8 analog synth

Modulation

Here you can route the LFO (low frequency oscillator) to a variety of destinations to create rhythmic filter sweeps, pulse width modulation, vibrato, tremolo, and other effects. Choose from six waveforms: sine, square, sample & hold (random), up saw, down saw, and triangle.

OB-X8 analog synth

Oscillators

Select the waveforms that generate the raw sound of the OB-X8. Each of the two discrete SEM/OB-X-lineage oscillators produce sawtooth, pulse, or triangle waves. Combine pulse and sawtooth waves for extra punch. Hard sync and Xmod (oscillator frequency modulation) add more edge and sonic possibilities.

OB-X8 analog synth

Filter

This is the soul of the OB-X8 sound. Choose between the three different analog filter configurations that gave the original OB-X, OB-Xa and OB-8 their unique character.

First, the classic SEM-lineage, two-pole, discrete low-pass OB-X filter is here, with its unmistakable ballsy sound. But it’s even more powerful on the OB-X8 because we’ve included not just the low-pass mode from OB-X, but all modes of the original SEM design — low-pass, high-pass, band-pass, and notch, exponentially expanding the sonic possibilities.

From the OB-Xa and OB-8 we’ve also included the classic Curtis CEM3320 filter with both 2-pole and 4-pole modes, which gave those instruments their distinctive flavor.  

OB-X8 analog synth

Envelopes

The 4-stage (attack, decay, sustain, release) filter and volume envelopes give shape to the harmonics  and loudness of OB-X8 sounds. Use these to make the OB-X8 whisper, growl, or scream by controlling the softness or percussiveness of synthesized textures.

Select between the OB-X/Xa or OB-8 envelope mode to capture the desired contour of each original instrument.

 

OB-X8 analog synth

Keyboard

This is where the bi-timbral capability (two different sounds at once) of the OB-X8 comes into play. Choose any two presets (“upper” and “lower”) and assign them to two different regions of the keyboard. Alternatively, layer them together for more complex textures. Adjust panning and volume independently for each preset.

OB-X8 analog synth

Levers

If you want to bend notes and add vibrato or other real-time modulation, look no further. This is where you’ll find the classic, performance-friendly Oberheim pitch and mod levers. The levers feature programmable bend range and mod amount as well as the ability to apply their effect to one or both oscillators.

The bend box also provides a second LFO with six different waveforms (triangle, square, Up Saw, Down Saw, Sample & Hold, and Noise). This LFO is dedicated to performance using the mod lever. Also present is a full-featured arpeggiator which can be applied independently to splits and doubles.

OB-X8 analog synth

Arpeggiator

Use the arpeggiator to create chord-based rhythmic patterns. Hold down several notes and the arpeggiator will cycle through them at the rate that you set and a pattern that you choose: up, down, up & down, or note order played. You can transpose the arpeggio up or down an octave and apply it to one or both parts in a split or double. All of the innovative arpeggiator functions of the OB-8 are built into the OB-X8.

 

OB-X8 analog synth

Keyboard

The OB-X8 features a five-octave, 61-key premium-quality Fatar keyboard. Velocity and aftertouch sensitivity allow you to make the most expressive use of your playing skills.

OB-X8 analog synth

MIDI Interface

The OB-X8 provides standard MIDI in/out/thru connections as well as USB for communicating with other electronic instruments or digital audio workstations (DAWS).

OB-X8 analog synth

Inputs

Connect your pedals here and use them to sustain notes, create volume swells, perform filter sweeps, and trigger the arpeggiator.

OB-X8 analog synth

Outputs

The OB-X8 provides both mono and stereo line-level outputs. Connect audio cables to these jacks, plug into a mixer or amp, and start performing or recording. Use the Page 2 enhancements to save stereo pan settings (4L4R, Ping Pong, Splayed, or Spread) per program.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Master section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Master

Set master volume, unison voice layering, as well as chord memory and note hold functions here.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Control section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Control

Here you can set the amount of oscillator 2 detuning and add as much “vintage” character as you like. Vintage mode affects the voice-to-voice variability of OB-X8 envelopes, oscillators, and filters to replicate the behavior of vintage instruments with all of their organic instabilities. You can also set the portamento (glide) amount in this section.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Arpeggiator section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Arpeggiator

Use the arpeggiator to create chord-based rhythmic patterns. Hold down several notes and the arpeggiator will cycle through them at the rate that you set and a pattern that you choose: up, down, up & down, or note order played. You can transpose the arpeggio up or down an octave and apply it to one or both parts in a split or double. All of the innovative arpeggiator functions of the OB-8 are built into the OB-X8.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Modulation section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Modulation

Here you can route the LFO (low frequency oscillator) to a variety of destinations to create rhythmic filter sweeps, pulse width modulation, vibrato, tremolo, and other effects. Choose from six waveforms: sine, square, sample & hold (random), up saw, down saw, and triangle.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Keyboard section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Keyboard

This is where the bi-timbral capability (two different sounds at once) of the OB-X8 comes into play. Choose any two presets (“upper” and “lower”) and assign them to two different regions of the keyboard. Alternatively, layer them together for more complex textures. Adjust panning and volume independently for each preset.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Oscillator section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Oscillators

Select the waveforms that generate the raw sound of the OB-X8. Each of the two discrete SEM/OB-X-lineage oscillators produce sawtooth, pulse, or triangle waves. Combine pulse and sawtooth waves for extra punch. Hard sync and Xmod (oscillator frequency modulation) add more edge and sonic possibilities.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Filter section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Filter

This is the soul of the OB-X8 sound. Choose between the three different analog filter configurations that gave the original OB-X, OB-Xa and OB-8 their unique character.

First, the classic SEM-lineage, two-pole, discrete low-pass OB-X filter is here, with its unmistakable ballsy sound. But it’s even more powerful on the OB-X8 because we’ve included not just the low-pass mode from OB-X, but all modes of the original SEM design — low-pass, high-pass, band-pass, and notch, exponentially expanding the sonic possibilities.

From the OB-Xa and OB-8 we’ve also included the classic Curtis CEM3320 filter with both 2-pole and 4-pole modes, which gave those instruments their distinctive flavor.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Envelope section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Envelopes

The 4-stage (attack, decay, sustain, release) filter and volume envelopes give shape to the harmonics and loudness of OB-X8 sounds. Use these to make the OB-X8 whisper, growl, or scream by controlling the softness or percussiveness of synthesized textures.

Select between the OB-X/Xa or OB-8 envelope mode to capture the desired contour of each original instrument.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the OLED section.
OB-X8 analog synth

OLED

In performance, the crisp OLED display shows the current program name along with its bank and group. It also provides easy access to the powerful “Page 2” functions for extra filter mode configurations, pan spread, LFO rate scaling, portamento modes, programmable bend box parameters, and more.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module top panel focusing in on the Programmer section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Programmer

Select and save presets and access Global settings such as aftertouch curves, alternate tuning scales, MIDI parameters, and more.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module rear panel focusing in on the MIDI section.
OB-X8 analog synth

MIDI Interface

The OB-X8 provides standard MIDI in/out/thru connections as well as USB for communicating with other electronic instruments or digital audio workstations (DAWS).

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module rear panel focusing in on the Inputs section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Inputs

Connect your pedals here and use them to sustain notes, create volume swells, perform filter sweeps, and trigger the arpeggiator.

An Image of the OB-X8 Desktop Module rear panel focusing in on the Outputs section.
OB-X8 analog synth

Outputs

The OB-X8 provides both mono and stereo line-level outputs. Connect audio cables to these jacks, plug into a mixer or amp, and start performing or recording. Use the Page 2 enhancements to save stereo pan settings (4L4R, Ping Pong, Splayed, or Spread) per program.

Oberheim

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OB-X8 Playlist

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PROP 65 WARNING

Some of our products can expose you to chemicals including BPA, which is known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm.

Though independent laboratory testing has certified that our products are several orders of magnitude below safe limits, it is our responsibility to alert you to this fact and direct you to https://www.p65warnings.ca.gov for more information.

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