This is why Teenage Engineering’s OP-1 just got a huge price hike

Teenage Engineering has made a statement regarding the rather large price increase of the OP-1 synth.

Last year, the Stockholm-based firm announced that the OP-1 wasn’t dead, just taking a production hiatus - this was off the back of an eBay listing of a second-hand OP-1 for $8,600.

Fast-forward to Valentine’s Day 2019 and TE broke many a heart with the announcement that it has had to cancel all preorders for its 170 and 16 Pocket Operator Modular instruments. However, it wasn’t all bad news, as it was also confirmed that the OP-1 is back in production.

However, Teenage Engineering maybe didn’t want to shout too loudly about the fact that the price of the OP-1 has gone up by 50%, with the synth now retailing for an eye-watering $1299/£1199/€1399.

So, why the delay in production and the hike in price? As Synthanatomy reports, it is all down to component cost, with the OLED screen being the main sticking point.

A representative from Teenage Engineering had this to say:

“We have had to face other costs than the actual components’ costs of course. The currency conversion, inflation, sourcing of the new component, re-coding the display, re-designing the mounting, new tools etc. are just a few of the “why”. When Teenage Engineering faced the reality of the OP-1’s future, there were only 2 choices: kill or save. We decided to save it. I understand that the new price is a disappointment to many of our fans. But I do hope some are happy that we did not kill it.”

TE's argument, then, is that the price hike was the only way of keeping the OP-1 alive, but that's still not going to make it sting any less if you've been waiting to buy one.

If you do feel like parting with $1299/£1199/€1399 for an OP-1, then you can purchase one from the Teenage Engineering webstore.

Simon Arblaster
Video Producer & Reviews Editor

I take care of the reviews on MusicRadar and Future Music magazine, though can sometimes be spotted in front of a camera talking little sense in the presence of real musicians. For the past 30 years, I have been unable to decide on which instrument to master, so haven't bothered. Currently, a lover of all things high-gain in the guitar stakes and never one to resist churning out sub-standard funky breaks, the likes of which you'll never hear.

All-access artist interviews, in-depth gear reviews, essential production tutorials and much more. image
All-access artist interviews, in-depth gear reviews, essential production tutorials and much more.
Get the latest issue now!