While Oberheim is keen to point out that the new OB-X8 is more than a repackaging of its greatest hits, the fact that it contains all the presets from the OB-X, OB-Xa and OB-8 means that comparisons with the company’s classic ‘80s synths are inevitable.
Rather than dodging scrutiny over how close the sound of the OB-X8 gets to that of the original OBs, though, the company is fully embracing the lineage. In fact, it’s just released a video that directly compares all 32 presets from an Oberheim OB-X with the recreated versions in an OB-X8.
To make the comparison as fair as possible, these were all recorded direct in mono and without EQ or effects.
The demonstration was carried out by Marcus Ryle, co-designer of the OB-X8 and an Oberheim engineer from 1980 to 1985.
So, does the OB-X8 have the same magic as the OB-X? We’d advise you to take Oberheim’s advice and “listen and judge for yourself”.