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OB-6? ... Analog Four?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> General Gear  
Author OB-6? ... Analog Four?
Birth_Chord
I had an OB-6 until this morning. I sent it back due to a problem I had with a pot and planned on exchanging it for the same thing... I live in the middle of nowhere Florida and there aren’t any music stores within at least 100 miles that carry anything besides a Minilogue so it’s hard to test products and I’m a guitar playing synth newb that studied some circuits in college and had just a MicroBrute with some pedals for 2 years.

I’ve got Studio One, a Fender Strat, Digitak, DSI Rev 2, Novation Peak, Moog Sub Phatty, and PreSonus ATOM controller.

I got rid of my MIDI keyboard when I acquired a Rev 2, so that’s my main keyboard. I use the Rev 2 keyboard for the Peak and OB-6, as well as the Digitakt/ATOM to control any synth I please. I’m only asking because I’m trying to complete my main “performance” setup before I dive into modular for shits and gigs. The Analog Four looks really nice, but I’ve used one in person and it’s very programming heavy. That’s not a bad thing but sometimes I prefer to get up and running quickly, and the Digitakt is king of that. I like a lot of subtle movement within my tracks and the four mono voices or four voice polyphony sounds pretty nice, and the quick performance controls. But there’s no sound that compares to the outer space sonics is the OB-6.

I should note when I had the OB-6 I wasn’t even browsing synth sites or reading up on any new synths coming out, learning about modular, etc. I was pretty content but I can’t help but feel doubt since she’s gone. Sometimes it felt like too much poly to handle with not enough utility, other times I couldn’t have asked for a better, more versatile setup. Maybe it’s just a give or take as I continue to learn and grow with them? I’m strictly a performance writer.

One last thing is I need to get better at sampling. I haven’t really used Studio One to sample my synths yet because I’m still lost in their sound design and nuances but maybe I should stick to the exchange and begin sampling my sounds.

Eh, thanks for reading my wall of text and classic self doubt. Any suggestions / comments welcome.

Cheers Guinness ftw!

Edit: Eh, with the Rev 2 sequencer, I have quite a bit of sequencing power already in split mode, with all the extra voices... I'm gonna stick with my gut and get the OB-6 for now smile
ObsoleteModular
You'd have to prise my OB-6 from my cold, dead hands!

Sounds like you're doing the same things and having the same thought processes as most of us smile

It's all an unending process. The gear we own. The workflows we adopt. It evolves constantly. Just try and get some stuff down on the way!

And beware modular. There be dragons!
Hi5
Having bought the A4 twice to then sell it twice and being an owner of a P12 with plenty of experience on my studio-mate's OB-6 I can categorically say do not replace the OB-6 with an A4.

Some other piece of gear, maybe but the OB-6 is too sweet
Birth_Chord
ObsoleteModular wrote:
You'd have to prise my OB-6 from my cold, dead hands!

Sounds like you're doing the same things and having the same thought processes as most of us smile

It's all an unending process. The gear we own. The workflows we adopt. It evolves constantly. Just try and get some stuff down on the way!

And beware modular. There be dragons!


Yea! Precisely. Although nearly everything I’ve purchased I’ve fallen in love with and kept, been trying to get it right on the first try. Only thing I sold was the Digitone. Felt too redundant with the Digitakt (for my uses) and I didn’t jive with the FM engine. I will state though it is absolutely the best synthesis based groove box in a package I’ve ever experienced. I’d still like a Yamaha Reface one day but for now the Peak does all that fine.

Maybe I’ve developed sensual feelings towards the OB-6 and I just... miss it already eek!
AdamJay
The A4 isn't for everyone.
However, the OB-6 appears to be.

I love the A4 engine. Even the MK1 which has more of a mid-forward tonality than the AK or MK2 do.
It's flexible and you can go just about anywhere with it. Putting in the time to program it pays dividends. Developing the muscle memory is crucial to getting to a place where you love it and it becomes indispensable.

But sometimes, hell... often times, you just don't want to put in that time.

Get that OB-6 back and enjoy it!
calaveras
I have both.
I rarely go beyond one or two tracks on the A4. It's just not a very wide palette of sounds, and what there are in there are mostly bunched up over to one side of the cartesian plot.
The OB6 on the other hand does everything I can do on an A4 and then some.
It may not have 2 filters or so many envelopes, LFOs and Plocks. But it's one good filter is enough.
The only thing I'd trade my OB6 for would be a Waldorf Quantum.
h4ndcrafted
I’d agree, the ob-6 is such a studio tool, sounds fall out of it so fast, you almost don’t need to save any.
rean1mator
love both my AK and OB6 and they are different enough in sound that I would never get rid of either. And I use my AK for CV sequencing my euro quite a bit. If I could use it as a midi controller/sequencer for other gear too...
CF3
Currently have an OB-6m and I’ve had a A4 in the past. IMO, sonically they’re not even in the same ballpark. The raw sound of the OB-6 is soo much better. It’s effortless to get the OB-6 sounding good. It’s 99% sweetspot.
Feature wise the A4 (thats of you’re into the whole Elektron thing) is pretty impressive. I’m just not down for the basic tone and workflow of the machine. Just my personal preference. The OB-6 architecture is “basic”, but boy, does it sound nice. It also makes it super quick to dial in patches.

As a side note, there’s somebody over on Gearslutz developing an expander for the OB-6 (and P6).
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/electronic-music-instruments-and-elect ronic-music-production/1252519-my-ob-6-expander-also-prophet-6-a.html
Panason
I doubt you can change it for another product after the first month has passed..

If you get the A4 you will regret it - especially if you've played an OB-6.
Birth_Chord
Panason wrote:
I doubt you can change it for another product after the first month has passed..

If you get the A4 you will regret it - especially if you've played an OB-6.


Already been shipped back, waiting impatiently to receive my new one.

Really can’t wait to get it back although I’m doing a good bit of programming in the gated sequence department on my Rev 2 since it’s been gone.
nectarios
The A4 does not sound nearly as good as the OB-6, but the A4 is a great performance synth for live sets + two channels of a very nice CV/gate sequencer.

The mk1s go for cheap nowdays and with some pedals/processing, the sound can be very decent, for techno anyway.
Birth_Chord
nectarios wrote:
The A4 does not sound nearly as good as the OB-6, but the A4 is a great performance synth for live sets + two channels of a very nice CV/gate sequencer.

The mk1s go for cheap nowdays and with some pedals/processing, the sound can be very decent, for techno anyway.


I was only interested for its utility and ability to add random synthesis based variation to grooves. However, I think I need to open my mind a bit to sampling my own synths. I haven’t been “against” it but I’ve never wanted to really get into it due to the hassle of my setup, I mostly sample vocals or noises and turn them into percussion. I prefer to play or sequence my main synths live but... I guess I can sample my own percussive synth patches.

Main revelation was with Studio One, I found out how to export even a small single track’s recording to .wav to transfer to the Digitakt without the hassle of plugging and unplugging things from my audio interface, since my Digitakt almost permanently has my guitar plugged into one of the inputs. This was my biggest roadblock because I thought the only way to do this was have a dummy song template and bounce the whole thing to .wav every time. I knew deep down there had to be an easier way but I’m a DAW newb.

So yea, that was the main inconvenience as I am relatively lazy when it comes to altering my setup for menial tasks. I think the OB-6 and Sub Phatty would be very good for percussive samples. I just found out about this .wav export two days ago actually and it’s already been a game changer...

Ooh I’m getting giddy again... I need my OB-6 back. It’s hard to live without.
orangehexagon
I would say spend more time with the Novation Peak. It's amazing some of the sounds you can coax out of it if you spend the time to learn how to program it.

You have so much gear already, esp as a self-described synth newb.

seriously though, i've gotten Buchla-esque west-coast sounds out of the Peak and I've also gotten CS-80-ish sounds out of it as well.
orangehexagon
Then again as you say, you're a performance writer...

The A4 is a performance tweaker's dream.

The OB6 is a keys player's dream.

Apples and Oranges light years apart.
Birth_Chord
orangehexagon wrote:
Then again as you say, you're a performance writer...

The A4 is a performance tweaker's dream.

The OB6 is a keys player's dream.

Apples and Oranges light years apart.


Yea you’re right, it’d be nice but I think that’s a future endeavor... I live in a very small town with a moderate music scene, live performance on anything besides guitar and my Rev 2 keyboard (or using it for MIDI) isn’t my focus currently as much as I love the idea of programmable (5-destination?) performance macros and four inputs with effects. Currently going the record EP -> perform it route.

I did some more thinking tonight as I wait for my OB-6 to get back and I think the only addition to my setup I need anymore is a nice reverb for my Sub Phatty. When I had the Digitone I just used that with its reverb, delay and chorus. I have my guitar pedals always set as is so my SP gets a bit neglected unless I use plugins and it sounds insane.
Birth_Chord
orangehexagon wrote:
I would say spend more time with the Novation Peak. It's amazing some of the sounds you can coax out of it if you spend the time to learn how to program it.

You have so much gear already, esp as a self-described synth newb.

seriously though, i've gotten Buchla-esque west-coast sounds out of the Peak and I've also gotten CS-80-ish sounds out of it as well.


I’ve owned synths to some degree since 2012 when I got my MicroBrute and BeatStep which lasted me about 3-4 years. Then I moved to plug-ins due to the sheer volume of them and now I’m back trying to rip out my end-game setup as quickly as I can in a pretty saturated and quickly evolving market. I also studied basic synthesis at college due to some circuits classes I had to take for computer hardware engineering, I’m more of a “programming my gear adequately as a one-man-band” newb than anything. Ideally I want to be able to perform everything live, for now I use my DAW but at some point once I’m done recording I think I’ll need a loop pedal, just because I don’t want to bring a computer up with me.

I don’t think I have a lot of gear, it fits on a pretty small table. But the magnitude of the gear I own is quite high, and that’s really what I was going for. Add a reverb to my Sub Phatty and I think I can call it quits and stop worrying about if I’ve made the right choices. I’m excited to explore the FM on my Peak, I really didn’t care for programming the Digitone. But while the OB-6 is away I decided to try and program more gated sequences for some of my patches because I find them quite useful in split mode with hold and beat sync. Damn I do love the Rev 2. Pretty much love everything I’ve got and declare /thread.

However we can continue discussing tangents freely Rockin' Banana!
gentle_attack
As someone who has gone in circles with gear, projects, and recording, the more you swap out your gear, the more you'll continue to spin your wheels without going anywhere.

People with great vision and workflow seem to be able to pick up anything and good stuff just flows out, while people who are stuck, seem to bring in an ever changing cast of gear, and never get anywhere.

If you spend some time with the A4, you'll realize it's a spectacular synth for sound design. It's not as knobby as something like a P6 or OB-6, but it's a great synth. I do love that creamy OB-6 sound though. The Elektron stuff has a lot going on that you can't expect to master even after working with their stuff for a year or more.

Tldr: you would be working with a worldclass piece of kit either way.
Birth_Chord
gentle_attack wrote:
As someone who has gone in circles with gear, projects, and recording, the more you swap out your gear, the more you'll continue to spin your wheels without going anywhere.

People with great vision and workflow seem to be able to pick up anything and good stuff just flows out, while people who are stuck, seem to bring in an ever changing cast of gear, and never get anywhere.

If you spend some time with the A4, you'll realize it's a spectacular synth for sound design. It's not as knobby as something like a P6 or OB-6, but it's a great synth. I do love that creamy OB-6 sound though. The Elektron stuff has a lot going on that you can't expect to master even after working with their stuff for a year or more.

Tldr: you would be working with a worldclass piece of kit either way.


That’s true. I’ve never owned a full-sized >2octave keyboard synth before with aftertouch so the creativity just oozes out. Woke up at 4am to get to it!
calaveras
The aftertouch on the OB6 is just so unexpectedly useful. I hadn't anticipated how it really makes it such an instrument.

It also has me wondering if my tepid opinion of the A4 would be changed if I had the A4 keys.
Birth_Chord
calaveras wrote:
The aftertouch on the OB6 is just so unexpectedly useful. I hadn't anticipated how it really makes it such an instrument.

It also has me wondering if my tepid opinion of the A4 would be changed if I had the A4 keys.


You’re right. Between the expression pedal, mod wheel, velocity sensitivity and aftertouch, the general playability as a instrument takes the OB-6 to another level.

The demos I’ve seen of the Analog Keys have always been superior to those of the A4. As a Digitakt owner I’d love for Elektron to make a high voiced keyboard synth but.. The sequencer and gate on my Rev 2 has actually completely satiated my desire for the A4 currently once I managed to get as proficient at programming it as I am the Digitakt. So yea, OB-6 has won, I have a delay pedal on the way for my Sub Phatty and I’ve been making some fantastic grooves lately.

My birthday is tomorrow, if I get any musical gift cards or cash/Visa I think I’m going to put it towards a field recorder for samples. Been walking about in nature recently and have heard many sounds I wish I could sample (small beach town in FL). That combined with the Digitakt and rest of my setup and I can’t see myself getting bored for many, many years.
Birth_Chord
Accidental double post... on phone d'oh!
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