Joined: Jun 11, 2009
Location: san francisco
|Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 12:23 am Post subject:
Subject description: Super clean Xpander, studio use only. Great synth.
Hi, I'm selling my Oberheim Xpander which has been kept in pristine condition since it has been in my pocession. I am the second owner and the owner before me kept it in a smoke free, air filtered studio. Never taken out of the Studio. I bought this unit in NYC back around 1998. Last tested (I will test again before shipping) everything worked perfect, all in's and out's ( except one, which I noted previous) and midi implementations. CV's, Gates, Triggers, Modulators , Knobs and buttons. Midi Ins, Thru and Out tested fine. Using my Modular CV and gate inputs tested fine as well. Outputs Right , Mono and Left were all fine, but I beleive it was Output 5 that had a short in it or bad amp, but all other Voice outputs worked perfect and it has its full stack of individual Voices and thats the important part. All parameter adjustments worked as well and were tested. The wood end plates are also in very nice condition, very clean and don't show their age. Overall this is a very clean, studio use only, Oberheim and would make a great collectors/studio piece and comes with original manual. I will ship only in the USA . Full payment within 24hours. There is a packing fee that goes into buying the correct packing materials, any money left over from that I will refund to the buyer. This unit must be packed very well to be shipped. No returns, unless UPS drives over it or something like that. Packing process is photo documented.
You can also pick up from me in person in the SF bay area after payment a course has been made in full, (packing cost, ship cost will be refunded if charged). I prefer to hand deliver for the safety and care of this unit. Please, any questions just ask.
The Oberheim Xpander was an analog synthesizer launched by Oberheim in 1984 and discontinued in 1988. It is essentially a keyboardless, six-voice version of the Matrix-12 (released a year later, in 1985). Utilizing Oberheim's Matrix Modulation technology, the Xpander combined analog audio generation (VCOs, VCF and VCAs) with the flexibility of digital controls logic.
The Xpander "Owner's Manual, First Edition" describes the technology as this:
"An analogy to the Matrix Modulation system might be all of those millions of wires that existed on the first modular synthesizers. As cumbersome as all of that wiring was, it allowed the user to connect any input to any output, resulting in sophistication and flexibility unmatched by any programmable synthesizer...until now."
Each of the six voices of the Xpander is completely independent. That is to say, each could be configured to create a different timbre - this is accomplished via the multi-patch mode which will be described below.
Starting at waveform generation, each voice has two voltage controlled oscillators (VCOs). Each of which is capable of generating sawtooth, triangle, pulse or noise waveforms. Furthermore, the "duty cycle" of the pulse width can be modulated as well. Although perhaps better known for subractive synthesis, the Xpander is also capable of frequency modulation (FM) synthesis by modulating VCO #1 with VCO #2.
Moving on from the VCOs, the signal then passes through a multi-mode voltage controlled filter (VCF). The available modes on the filter are:
one-, two-, three- and four-pole low pass
one-, two and three-pole high pass
two- and four-pole band pass
three-pole phase shift
two- and three-pole high pass plus one-pole low pass
two-pole notch plus one-pole low pass
three-pole phase shift plus one-pole low pass
From the filter, there are two sequential voltage controlled amplifiers (VCAs) through which the signal must pass. And finally the audio is delivered to a variety of outputs: mono, stereo and six independent outputs (corresponding to the six voices).
Of those analog audio components (VCOs, VCF and VCAs), each can be modulated by several different digital controls.
ADSR Envelopes - each voice can have up to five envelope generators. Each envelope is of the standard Attack-Decay-Sustain-Release model (ADSR), with the addition of an initial Delay phase, thus making them DADSR envelopes, to be exact.
Low Frequency Oscillators (LFOs) - each voice can have up to five LFOs applied. Each LFO can have a different waveform: triangle, square, up-saw, down-saw, random or noise. Additionally, a sampling mode is provided, whereby an independent source (e.g. a different LFO) is sampled at a set frequency.
Lag Generator - the lag function is similar to portamento on traditional sythesizers. However, the lag modulation in the Xpander can be applied to any control or audio signal.
Ramp Generators - each voice can have up to four ramp generators. Similar to the attack portion of an ADSR envelope, the ramp generates a linear signal from zero to the user-defined ramp height.
Tracking Generators - there are three tracking generators available for each voice. The tracking generator provides a mapping from a control source (e.g. key range on the keyboard, or volume pedal, or mod wheel) to a modified output, based on the user-defined settings of the generator.
Famous Users and Example Uses
Vince Clarke - On everything by Erasure until 2005. You can hear it very clearly on the 12" mix of "Sexuality", for example, at the start, and mid and low end parts (filter sweeps, etc.). He actually has two of them, and used them for the chorus tour in 1991 - 1992, which was mostly old analog synths.
Sasha - Whose track "Xpander" was written in homage to the instrument. That supersaw style sound, originated using the Xpander's filtering and multi/unison and stacking capabilities.
Nitzer Ebb - Extensive use for basslines on "Belief".
Depeche Mode - Have two of them, and can clearly be heard on everything from It's Called A Heart and Black Celebration onwards
Daniel Miller - Has one in the Mute worldwide programming studio
Human League - All over the mid 80's period & onward albums
Juicy Audio Productions(S R DHAIN) - Stars of Oryeon Album . Also film & T.V. work.
Hans Zimmer - Sprinkled on various scores for films.
Orbital - Everything from the first self-titled album Onward
Tangerine Dream - Everything from Le Parc onward.
The Chemical Brothers - Can be heard in a lot of their music post 1995
Meat Beat Manifesto - In a lot of their remixes
Nine Inch Nails - Including an Xpander modified for use with external inputs
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