Teenage Engineering OP-1 Synth Jam

Sunday Synth Jam: This video, via Alba Ecstasy, demos his patch library for the Teenage Engineering OP-1 synthesizer.

“If you think as I did, before putting my hands on a OP-1, that this is an expensive toy, you’re right only about the price,” he notes. “Because OP-1 is nothing but a monster synth inside of a small case.”

The OP-1 patch library is available for free via his site.

Technical Details:

This song uses 7 different OP-1 tracks, recorded one by one in Logic Pro X. Delay and reverb added in Logic.

7 thoughts on “Teenage Engineering OP-1 Synth Jam

  1. The sound quality is pretty nice. The drums sound clean. Since it was recording one track at a time into Logic, it is hard to know what Logic is adding. Probably effects and compression.

    I’d be curious how the OP-1’s synthesis compares, say, to the bundled synths of Logic– and what the above example would have sounded like in Logic alone.

    I do very much appreciate what the OP-1 represents just as a well-built, well-designed gadget. If a Korg MicroKey had a few more knobs, then that and an iPad would probably be a more flexible combo. But still, the OP-1 has its mojo– based on the demos that I’ve seen/heard.

    1. There is on-board compression/drive and many of the included FX are as good as any VST. You really don’t need to polish up anything that comes out of the OP-1. It does say he added delay and reverb in Logic. The OP-1 reverb is admittedly somewhat subpar, so that’s understandable.

      Most drum sounds you hear from it are usually samples 9the samplers are great), but there are also some interesting drum engines. The synth engines are fantastic and deceptively simple-seeming at first glance, but it makes amazing synth sounds – probably better, or at the very least more unique than a Microkey. The main thing that gives it the mojo, though, is the workflow, which is hard to explain, but pulls creativity out of you in a very unusual way.

      I was super skeptical of the thing when it first came out (“totally a toy for hipsters!”), but after I got my hands on one, I couldn’t resist. Now it’s one of my favorite things to make music on ever.

      1. With a MicroKey (midi controller) you get velocity response. With the iPad you get more choices of great synths and sequencing options. But the OP-1 is built like a tank, has knobs and is an integrated concept. I think I’d enjoy working with one.

  2. To all the op-1 naysayers… Don’t judge until you’ve tried it. This is not a toy. It is a full fledged portable music workstation. Very full featured and fantastic sounding! Well worth the price.

  3. Congrats to Alba Ecstasy on a really cool demo.

    The OP-1 puts many other synths to shame, it’s even got a physically modelled plucked string synth. But the pseudo tape-based sequencer is not much fun to work with. I’m really looking forward to the OP-2 – nudge, nudge, wink, wink 🙂

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