The OMG-1 Synthesizer – The Coolest Synth Of NAMM 2011?

OMG-1 synthesizer

The 2011 NAMM Show is shaping up to be a pretty good year for electronic music gear – but the most interesting synth introduced is one that you can’t buy.

The Bob Moog Foundation gave a special presentation at the NAMM Show, announcing a unique collaboration with Eric Persing of Spectrasonics on a fund-raising contest to benefit the foundation.

Eric Persing and Michelle Moog-Koussa Introduce the OMG-1

Details on the contest won’t be announced until later, but, during the presentation, Persing, above with Michelle Moog-Koussa, unveiled the amazing Grand Prize. The prize will be the one-of-a-kind custom OMG-1 hardware synthesizer he created, that integrates the worlds of analog synthesis, computers, software synthesis and multi-touch surfaces into one extraordinary instrument.

Based on the look we got, Persing’s OMG-1 should have been named OMFG-1.

OMG-1 synthesizer

The OMG-1 Synthesizer

The OMG-1 was designed by Persing as a live performance instrument and is not a commercial product — it’s truly one-of-a-kind

The state of the art dual-manual OMG-1 combines:

  • a Moog Little Phatty analog synthesizer
  • Spectrasonics’ flagship Omnisphere software synthesizer
  • An internal Apple Mac Mini computer
  • Dual Apple iPads
  • Dual iPods
  • Spectrasonics’ new Omni TR iPad app

All this electronic music technology is integrated into a beautiful, hand-crafted curly maple cabinet, created by American artisan Daniel Auon.

During the special presentation, Moog-Koussa, Executive Director of the Bob Moog Foundation, and Persing talked about their collaboration and Eric gave a progtacular demo with the OMG-1. Using the OMG-1, Persing demonstrated that he could play complex OmniSphere virtual instruments and manipulate them using the multi-touch controllers, play iPad synth applications and add true analog leads with the Little Phatty.

“I’ll never forget the first time I played a Minimoog when I was a little kid…it truly changed my life!” said Persing. “So, it’s a privilege after all these years to give back to the foundation honoring my hero Bob Moog and keeping the spirit and history of his inventions alive for the next generation. I had a blast designing the OMG-1 with Dan and I can’t wait to see who wins it!”

Michelle Moog-Koussa added, “Eric’s OMG-1….represents the contemporary convergence of analog and digital, hardware and software. I think Bob would applaud Eric’s efforts to transcend boundaries in order to create an instrument with new and unique capabilities.”

Details on the Moog Foundation will be announced when the contest begins on March 15th, 2011.

Note: We talked with Moog-Koussa today about their plans for the contest and, while we can’t reveal them yet, we can say that the contest will be as unique as the controller. She also noted that the OMG-1 isn’t really a product of either Moog Music or Spectrasonics, but was created by Persing specifically for the contest.


43 thoughts on “The OMG-1 Synthesizer – The Coolest Synth Of NAMM 2011?

  1. Ummmm… WOW. Persing deserves some kind of supreme awesomeness medal for putting that together.

    THAT is modern, innovative design. You have all these big names like Korg coming out with these boring 'workstations' and hardware samplers or whatever… it's just dull. The "retro early '90s" thing is throwing me off.

    WHERE'S THE CRAZY FUTURISTIC S#!T LIKE THIS THAT WE WANT???

    Imagine if big companies like this got together and started REALLY mixing it up, and built things that integrated the best of analog/digital/software/OS/controllers/interfaces/etc. Man…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  2. Wrong! I'd have it on looks alone and polish it every day even if it turned out that the upper keyboard did nothing and the lower one was soldered to a Stylophone.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  3. In fact, I'd never switch it on because you'd only get iPod and iPad upgrade messages on the screens.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  4. I love Eric and anything he does.

    BUT this should have been called the OMFG!

    I think if I won this I would rip it apart if I am honest. Hope they did not use too much glue…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  5. sick! eric persing is the man.. spectrasonics customer relations and product development team are examplary in this industry. they stand by their word and continue development and enhancements on omnisphere.. keep it up guys and gals

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  6. I don't know about the rest of the Moog fans, but I worry about any Moog product with MG-1 in the name. I hope for the winner's sake that OMG-1 doesn't standfor Overendowed MG-1.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Yeah, okay, it's pretty… but what does it sound like? What do those two iPods and two iPads actually do, and what's the Mac Mini for?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  8. The integrated Little Phatty will be timeless, as will the beautiful enclosure. All the rest will be obsolete in 1 year.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  9. yeah, it's interesting it has a mac mini, but no screen for it, unless one or both of the ipads are the screen. can they do that?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  10. Actually, it will be far from obsolete for many, many years. Probably the most refreshable synth ever made.

    Extraordinary new iPad apps and Music Software will continue to come out and run on this instrument every day. In years to come, simply replace the iPads with the next model and update the internal computer with a faster one yourself.

    Of course, the sound is incredible because it's designed to run Omnisphere with full integration of the Moog knobs and buttons….AND the iPad. If you want to run any other soft synths or music software….you can.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  11. The iPads are used here as a touchscreen for the built-in Mac mini as multi-touch MIDI controllers for the soft synths and also as synths themselves that can be MIDI'ed to the Little Phatty.

    It's extraordinarily flexible.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  12. Heh-heh….not even close. :-)

    Safe to say this instrument is just a tad nicer than the Radio Shack Moog. ;-)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  13. The Mac Mini is for running professional soft synths like Omnisphere or whatever you want. You could even run Ableton Live or Pro Tools on this synth!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  14. ………..if I see another product with a fruit in it….I will certainly……..PukE!
    ……………………………but great concept non-
    the-
    less….
    …….more WooD less FruiT…………

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  15. I am an industrial musician who created the band I.N.R.I. and have used and followed many different brands and type of synthesizers. Any of you who criticize the innovation of amazing technology bound to a true Moog synthesizer either don't know what the hell you are talking about, or you are just completely naive I am seriously impressed with with this synth this is what I've been looking for my whole life as a musician to integrate into the style of music I do. I will be competing for this amazing synth and will get down and dirty to get my hands on it thank you to Eric Persing and moog for building the future of synthesizers

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  16. A monstrosity. Not only is it visually unappealing, but the Ipad and Ipod integration shows the lack of design ingenuity and knowledge. Instead of using dedicated XY controls (Which cost wise would easily knock a $1,000 off the build cost of this)., it relies on IPads, which rely on IOS, the Mac Mini which relies on OSX, it's like Bob Moog and Steve Jobs took a shit in the same porta-potty, and someone came along and put a cherrywood case around it.
    IMO the most intuitive and memorable synths don't have 'everything but the kitchen sink' built in, they are built with a design focus and quality parts, and do what they are designed to do well..What I see above reminds me that not every idea is worth putting into production. Not innovative, not aestetic. Basically an oversized Lil Fatty with 2 tv's built in and a crappy softsynth (Sorry Omnisphere fans, you can keep your softsynths). I'm surprised this thing isn't outfitted with 'spinners'.

    Here's a link to a guy that has a good sense for synth beauty and practicality:
    http://www.synth-project.de/Welcome.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  17. A monstrosity. Not only is it visually unappealing, but the Ipad and Ipod integration shows the lack of design ingenuity and knowledge. Instead of using dedicated XY controls (Which cost wise would easily knock a $1,000 off the build cost of this)., it relies on IPads, which rely on IOS, the Mac Mini which relies on OSX, it's like Bob Moog and Steve Jobs took a shit in the same porta-potty, and someone came along and put a cherrywood case around it.
    IMO the most intuitive and memorable synths don't have 'everything but the kitchen sink' built in, they are built with a design focus and quality parts, and do what they are designed to do well..What I see above reminds me that not every idea is worth putting into production. Not innovative, not aestetic. Basically an oversized Lil Fatty with 2 tv's built in and a crappy softsynth (Sorry Omnisphere fans, you can keep your softsynths). I'm surprised this thing isn't outfitted with 'spinners'.

    Here's a link to a guy that has a good sense for synth beauty and practicality:
    http://www.synth-project.de/Welcome.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  18. A monstrosity. Not only is it visually unappealing, but the Ipad and Ipod integration shows the lack of design ingenuity and knowledge. Instead of using dedicated XY controls (Which cost wise would easily knock a $1,000 off the build cost of this)., it relies on IPads, which rely on IOS, the Mac Mini which relies on OSX, it's like Bob Moog and Steve Jobs took a shit in the same porta-potty, and someone came along and put a cherrywood case around it.
    IMO the most intuitive and memorable synths don't have 'everything but the kitchen sink' built in, they are built with a design focus and quality parts, and do what they are designed to do well..What I see above reminds me that not every idea is worth putting into production. Not innovative, not aestetic. Basically an oversized Lil Fatty with 2 tv's built in and a crappy softsynth (Sorry Omnisphere fans, you can keep your softsynths). I'm surprised this thing isn't outfitted with 'spinners'.

    Here's a link to a guy that has a good sense for synth beauty and practicality:
    http://www.synth-project.de/Welcome.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  19. A monstrosity. Not only is it visually unappealing, but the Ipad and Ipod integration shows the lack of design ingenuity and knowledge. Instead of using dedicated XY controls (Which cost wise would easily knock a $1,000 off the build cost of this)., it relies on IPads, which rely on IOS, the Mac Mini which relies on OSX, it's like Bob Moog and Steve Jobs took a shit in the same porta-potty, and someone came along and put a cherrywood case around it.
    IMO the most intuitive and memorable synths don't have 'everything but the kitchen sink' built in, they are built with a design focus and quality parts, and do what they are designed to do well..What I see above reminds me that not every idea is worth putting into production. Not innovative, not aestetic. Basically an oversized Lil Fatty with 2 tv's built in and a crappy softsynth (Sorry Omnisphere fans, you can keep your softsynths). I'm surprised this thing isn't outfitted with 'spinners'.

    Here's a link to a guy that has a good sense for synth beauty and practicality:
    http://www.synth-project.de/Welcome.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  20. A monstrosity. Not only is it visually unappealing, but the Ipad and Ipod integration shows the lack of design ingenuity and knowledge. Instead of using dedicated XY controls (Which cost wise would easily knock a $1,000 off the build cost of this)., it relies on IPads, which rely on IOS, the Mac Mini which relies on OSX, it's like Bob Moog and Steve Jobs took a shit in the same porta-potty, and someone came along and put a cherrywood case around it.
    IMO the most intuitive and memorable synths don't have 'everything but the kitchen sink' built in, they are built with a design focus and quality parts, and do what they are designed to do well..What I see above reminds me that not every idea is worth putting into production. Not innovative, not aestetic. Basically an oversized Lil Fatty with 2 tv's built in and a crappy softsynth (Sorry Omnisphere fans, you can keep your softsynths). I'm surprised this thing isn't outfitted with 'spinners'.

    Here's a link to a guy that has a good sense for synth beauty and practicality:
    http://www.synth-project.de/Welcome.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  21. A monstrosity. Not only is it visually unappealing, but the Ipad and Ipod integration shows the lack of design ingenuity and knowledge. Instead of using dedicated XY controls (Which cost wise would easily knock a $1,000 off the build cost of this)., it relies on IPads, which rely on IOS, the Mac Mini which relies on OSX, it's like Bob Moog and Steve Jobs took a shit in the same porta-potty, and someone came along and put a cherrywood case around it.
    IMO the most intuitive and memorable synths don't have 'everything but the kitchen sink' built in, they are built with a design focus and quality parts, and do what they are designed to do well..What I see above reminds me that not every idea is worth putting into production. Not innovative, not aestetic. Basically an oversized Lil Fatty with 2 tv's built in and a crappy softsynth (Sorry Omnisphere fans, you can keep your softsynths). I'm surprised this thing isn't outfitted with 'spinners'.

    Here's a link to a guy that has a good sense for synth beauty and practicality:
    http://www.synth-project.de/Welcome.html

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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