Teenage Engineering OP-1 Digital Synthesizer
Gearank High Notes
- November 2017: Highest Rated Digital Keyboard Synthesizer Under $1000
The Teenage Engineering OP-1 is a portable synthesizer, sampler and controller all in one compact unit with a futuristic design.
It comes with eight different synth engines, and exchangeable effects and LFOs available on the manufacturer’s website.
The color-coded interface corresponds to the color graphics on its OLED display, making it easy to read and shape sounds in a non-technical way.
This synthesizer's built-in virtual 4-track tape recorder lets you change tape speeds or record in reverse in real-time.
Its battery allows up to 16 hours of use on one charge.
- Keys: 24 keys
- Polyphony: 24 voices
- Display: 1 x OLED
- Sound Generator: 8 x Digital, 2 x Sampling
- Presets: Not Specified
- Effects: Delay (classic delay type), Phone (hacked phone effect), Punch (adds punch to your sound), Grid (grid based echo), Spring (spring reverb type), Cwo (rhythmic delay), Nitro (dynamic filter)
- Additional Controllers: 1 x Variable, 1 x 3-Axis Motion Sensor (G-Force)
- Step Sequencer: 1 x Pattern, 1 x Endless, 1 x Tombola Random Sequence Generator
- Audio Input: 1/8" Stereo jack
- Audio Output: 1/8" Stereo jack
- Connectivity: USB
- Power: 16-hour Battery
- Dimensions: 11.1" x 0.53" x 4.02"
- Weight: 1.5 lbs
At first glance, its size gave reviewers a deceiving impression where some thought it was a toy. They found out later on it had a wide array of sequencing and synthesis options once they started using it. While possessing a minimalist design, it has quite a sturdy build with robust controls. Most reviewers were pleased with the large number of effects, filters and drum patches, which makes it great for attaining a different approach on sound design and performance. Some of the notable features reviewers found useful was its FM radio, which has the ability to sample from any radio station and modulate those samples as well.
Some users mentioned this synthesizer takes a while to figure out at first, especially for those who are not familiar with basic synth functions.
This is a great investment if you are looking for a portable synthesizer workstation and can find one available to buy.
The Teenage Engineering OP-1 was previously on our recommended list of Keyboard Synths Under $1000 but had to be removed due to its price going up.