Could GForce’s enhanced Oberheim OB-X emulation be even better than the original synth?

You don’t have to be much of a synth expert to know about the Oberheim OB-X, one of several classic ‘OB’ instruments that helped to define the sound of the early ‘80s.

Given its high-profile and enduring popularity, it’s no surprise that the OB-X has been emulated various times in software already, but GForce Software clearly thinks it’s got something to add to the plugin conversation and has now released its own take on the synth.

The premise is that, as well as giving you the classic OB-X tones of the past, a number of new features enable this emulation to create fresh sounds with a modern edge.

You can use up to 16 voices, each of which has access to two oscillators, a 2-pole resonant low-pass filter, amplifier and two envelope generators. The classic modulation section is here, too, but there’s more - much more.

The GForce OB-X offers mono, legato, poly and unison modes (with unison detune) and also includes a ‘vintage’ control that enables you to adjust the amount of analogue imperfection. 

What’s more, there are (deep breath) four programmable Macros, new intro, retrigger, phase and smoothing features for the LFO, new level destination for the LFO, separate PWM1 and 2, discrete levels, discreet tracking, an arpeggiator, a chord mode with scaler, and individual pan of eight pairs of voices.

Throw in chorus, stereo delay and reverb effects, X-Modifiers, dedicated LFOs and ADSRs for almost all parameters, and you’ve got a whole lot of OB-Xtras to play with.

More than 400 presets are included to demonstrate this ‘new’ OB-X’s tonal range. These can be perused in a new, flexible browser that offers multiple tagging, sorting and search options.

The GForce Oberheim OB-X runs on PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX and standalone formats and can currently be purchased for the introductory price of £82. The regular price will be £120.

This is not GForce’s first Oberheim rodeo, of course; it previously emulated the company’s SEM and OB-E synths, and you can currently purchase these in a bundle with the new OB-X for £204 (regular price £300).

Find out more and download a demo on the GForce Software website.

GForce Software Oberheim OB-X

(Image credit: GForce Software)
Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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