Synth Site: ARP: Omni 2: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 3.7 out of 5
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Mike Thompson a hobbyist user from CT writes:
Just want to clarify; unless there's something strangely wrong with mine, the strings are NOT identical to the Solina String Ensemble. They sound brighter and thinner by comparison (I did a back-to-back test). They still sound close, but the Solina has the Omni-2 beat for strings in terms of warmth. Other than that minor glitch in opinion :), the ARP Omni-2 is a great little vintage string machine/synthesizer. The synth section isn't as playable as a polysynth because of the divide-down technology which re-triggers the envelopes on each keystroke, and the option for single trigger makes playing even harder but the filter is there, the ARP sound is there, the bass is present and sounds just like an electric bass in a mix, and it's overall a great instrument that will still work in music today. They all seem to suffer from the leaky capacitors which I guess cause notes to bleed but with some time and knowledge that can be fixed. I'm keeping mine :)

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Jan-20-2009 at 08:43
PC-72 a hobbyist user from Denmark writes:
When I bought mine it was used, battered and scarred. It looked like something from a dungheap. I soldered back a broken key contact (you don't have to be a genius in electronics to do that, btw - although it is a bit tedious) and put it in the studio.

Yes, the looks are quite deceptive - those strings kick some severe arse! Even for an old battered keyboard it packs quite a punch! The synth section isn't too bad, if a bit cheap - but the strings - the reason for most people to use an Omni - are absolutely mesmerising.

Give the strings some phasing and delay and you'll want your fingers to merge with the keys. I'm not getting rid of mine - that's for certain.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Apr-25-2008 at 09:55
neno hardidge from australia(perth) writes:
i have a 4 tier arp omni theatre organ here well at least thats what i think it is if i could get some more info on it that would be great ive looked in several site and cant find anything that looks the same ive been told by a local piano shop owner that there wasnt many of these organs brought to aus so its very likly that they are still here... i have all three speakers plus the podium speaker and the pipes i will try my best to post a pic as soon as i can.... it was last turned on in 1935 not sure when it was used last ...im not gonna take the risk turning it on in case i blow myself up.lol if u could send me some info that would be great thanks very much ......neno

Rating: 0 out of 5 posted Sunday-Jan-15-2006 at 02:38
Al DeCaro a professional user from Ohio USA writes:
i bought my Omni II brand new and it has lived in it's Calzone case for the last 10 years. I made a lot of money with this keyboard. I play with a Quartet...Sax, Bass, Drums and Keyboard. I would use the strings to play lead lines on "Somewhere my Love, Moon River..etc. I'd use the Bass comboed with a Brass type patch for Rick Jame's ? She's a very Kinky Girl" The sustaining strings..with the sound fading away was so effective. Use the strings ...holding long notes accompanying the Tenor Sax...put my group on the map in Wallingford, Conn. I've moved to Dayton Ohio and I'm thinking about pulling it out of it's case and doing it all over again.

The key contacts do break...but even I can fix them. It's a great instrument. I'm really happy to see that so many other musicians agree with me.

It will probably look like a relic in today's world, but it's all about the sound and the control over that sound.

I did visit the ARP factory for service one time, it's sad that they could not survive.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Thursday-Dec-29-2005 at 16:35
Mike the Mender a professional user writes:
This is a much underrated synth. The strings are those off the solina. Do you really think ARP could be bothered, or had the cash, to design their own string synth? Amusingly, the omni is a lot cheaper than a solina. The bass section is earth shattering. laughably powerful in many ways. When could you ever use it? The synth section isn't in the same league as a prophet, or anything like that. It is capable of some sweet sounds and fabulous filter sweeps. Real low snarling ones. The reliability is quite poor, but better than much of the stuff from its era, like the polymoog. Quite a few still remain. Not that many were built, though it was ARP's most successful product. The design is simple and they are easy to repair. The power supply is a particular weak point. The case is strong so expect them to appear in quite good condition. The keys are a problem, and often get snapped off. They are also easily obtainable. It's the same keyboard as used on a number of home organs...these were early days. This is not a first synth by any means. It is a nice artefact. The chorus unit fattens up the sound no end. It's a great synth to use a vocoder through. Violins talking! I've fixed up a few that had been hacked about. Some components are a bit leaky. It's old technology. As an old synth, the omni is great. A better proposition than many of its contemoporaries.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Feb-11-2005 at 04:08
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