Synth Site: Miscellaneous: OSCar: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 4.3 out of 5
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rachel a part-time user from Australia writes:
I recently bought my OSCar (on impulse) at a Sydney music shop for $2850 (AUD).

It is in immaculate condition and seems to work almost perfectly. It is a rather quirky synth but has a unique sound that stands out among both digital and analogue instruments.

I have always lusted after an OSCar since I first read a review in a 1985 "Sonics" magazine (australian music mag) that ended with the quote 'I want one'. So did I, from that moment forth. I lacked the resources to buy one at the time and when I finally did, there were no OSCars to be found. I finally came across this one, which is the first of few that I had seen that was actually fully operational and physically perfect.

Mine seems to have the full MIDI spec, at least I do not think it is a refit. I am still getting used to the clock divider for MIDI clocks. It seems to be a fine art to get synch just right, but when it does, it swings beautifully. The arpeggiator is clever, but simple -it does seem to have a slight glitch, but I think it is OK in the right musical context and is part of the appeal of the instrument.

I am using my OSCar to do purely electronic sounds and it can go from huge sub-bass to nasally thin screaming lead in a heartbeat.

I think my one has a battery slowly going flat as it doesn't always do the right thing with my patches. It seems to save most of a patch, but omits the Octave and sometimes Filter settings.

Mostly though it works OK. I use it as a regular monosynth mainly and just store the basic patch settings I want then tweak the rest.

I have no problems driving OSCar via MIDI, but I absolutely love the keyboard. It is a lightweight synth action but it is so fluid I can do mad glissandoes on it so simply. I wish my DX7-II (my controller) had the same action.

I find the OSCar has a very full sound, that can stand alone in a small ensemble with just a few instruments, or it can sit in a mix with lots of layers very nicely too.

I also have a MiniMoog that I duet the OSCar with. MY current project involves minimal tunes with OSCar doing bass via the arp/seq synchedto my Drummer and the MiniMoog providing ambient lead and pad lines.

The OSCar is a very fragile instrument and needs to be treated gently. It is not giggable as such in my opinion, unless it is stored with the guitarist's 67 strat and handled the same way.

I am very pleased with my purchase as I wanted one of these for so long and am not disappointed at all with the sound or the performance of the instrument - if only I could find a way to keep my cat off it.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Monday-Jan-12-2004 at 22:48
eccentric a professional user from usa writes:
..just wanted to clear up something posted in an earlier OSCar review- The reason the unit shows up as being manufactured by SSL if you dump its data to a computer editor is that Chris Huggett didn't actually apply for a unique manufacturer ID with the MMA when he produced the unit. Instead, he choses sysex 2B (the ID formally assigned to SSL), so that when he tested the data dump he could see whether it was 2B or not 2B (yes it's funny, and no I'm not kidding- I heard this from him directly!)


Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Sunday-Oct-19-2003 at 02:48
Jesper Ödemark a hobbyist user from Sweden writes:
I finally got myself an OSCar. I have one of the original hand-built and it has serial number 35. All serials on later models were written in biro on the bottom wood piece (all according to Paul Wiffen, once on the OSCar team). Mine has the serial number on a sticker on the digital board inside. My unit also has OSCar MIDI and a custom waveform multiplier, partly designed by Chris Huggett. Now I just want to exchange the trig in for audio in to filter! Here's my studio:

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Mar-14-2003 at 03:16
Chris L a professional user from London writes:
Great sounding and powerful editing. However, it is very very expensive and, as with most monos, of limited use. There are better deals out there. They are rare and highly prized so you have to pay a premium if you wish to own one. One of the best monos...but worth more than a Prophet 5?

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Jan-28-2003 at 13:16
Quentin a part-time user from Birmingham,UK writes:
You can get some pretty fat sounds out of it if you set the filter and envelopes just right, the main problem I found is that the attack time on the filter is a liitle too slow for giving a Moog type punch to the sound.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Dec-10-2002 at 07:56
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