The Oberheim OB-8 is a subtractive analog synthesizer launched by Oberheim in early 1983 and discontinued in 1985. As the fourth product in the OB-series of polyphonic compact synthesizers, the OB-8 was the successor to the OB-Xa. The number of production was about 3,000 units.
|Dates||1983 - 1985|
|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)|
|Storage memory||120 patches|
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. The 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, Queen, Van Halen, Depeche Mode, The War on Drugs, Styx, Kool & The Gang, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Clarence Jey, The Police, Siekiera, Silent Running, The KLF, Future Sound of London, Barnes & Barnes and Nik Kershaw.
Notable OB-8 usersEdit
- 14 Bis
- Andy Whitmore (Greystoke Studios)
- Art of Noise
- Billie Hughes
- Depeche Mode
- Dennis DeYoung
- David Frank
- Simple Minds
- 'Til Tuesday
- Floating Points
- Steve Roach
- Steve Hillier of Dubstar
- Jimmy Jam
- Clarence Jey
- The Police
- The KLF
- Soul II Soul
- Pet Shop Boys
- Van Halen
- Thompson Twins
Hardware re-issues and recreationsEdit
In May, 2022, the Oberheim OB-X8, a new 8-voice analog synthesizer with the voice architecture and filters of three classic Oberheim models: the OB-X, OB-Xa, and OB-8, along with functionality and features not included on the original models, was announced. The new synthesizer is manufactured by Sequential in partnership with Tom Oberheim.
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
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