So, just before the MESSE show, there was a lot of buzz surrounding the new Casio VL-Tone inspired OP-1 synthesizer.
This lovely looking and strangely featured little synth (FM synthesis and FM radio!?!), comes from the Teenage Design collective, a selection of folks with some design pedigree in synthesizer work (Elektron) and electronics also.
There was a single OP-1 synth on display â€“ it was really at prototype stage, although we were told that the fabrication and electronics are pretty much done, the software is where the next year or so will be spent â€“ ain't that allways the way? The OLED LED does look wonderful, but will no doubt be a contributary factor to the 700 (ish) Euros proposed price tag. I cant help but feel that this might be a little out of the range of the original and Casio VL-Tone's target market.
Call me cynical, but wouldn't this kind of buzz be just the way to drum up a some synthesizer design work for a team of talented designers which has been pretty much the sole domain of one Axel Hartmann up to now?
Bottom line is that it really looks gorgeous and does appeal to the Korg Nano fan in me â€“ we hope to see this li'll feller make it to market in timely fashion.
There will be a Beta program much later this year, where I believe up to 100 units will be made available â€“ but I imagine there will be a long, long waiting list for this..