New BEHRINGER UB-Xa Synthesizer Renders Published! Desktop Or Keyboard Is The Question

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Uli Behringer published today on Gearslutz new renders of the upcoming UB-Xa Synthesizer. He also ask the community if they prefer a keyboard or desktop version of the Tom Oberheim analog polyphonic synth.


For me personal, I would prefer a desktop unit because it’s more handy to use but this depends very on the user. If the keyboard is high-quality, I’m also fine with a keyboard version. The price is for sure also a point here. Desktop units are usually a bit cheaper than synths with keys.

Uli Behringer’s Gearslutz Thread

Allow me to provide you with a quick update. 

Aside from the earlier desktop version, many of you requested for a keyboard version of the UB-Xa synth and hence we thought we’d share some designs with you. We have asked our engineers to render a 5-octave keyboard version and use this opportunity to show you some of the insights how such a product is developed.

It all starts with the industrial design as well as definition and placement of all functional controls. Once this is completed, the next step is to transfer the “dxf” file which contain the component coordinates plus the artwork for the silk screen printing to the mechanical engineers. Their job is now to translate the artwork into a fully functional design. In general this works quite smoothly but there are instances where mechanical conflicts arise and artwork changes are required. This collaboration between industrial designers as well as mechanical and system engineers gets more complicated whenever electrical or mechanical constraints come into play.

Over many decades our engineering teams have created a massive component library of close to 100,000 components which have been designed in a photo- and dimension-realistic manner.

This means that any product that is designed based on components from the library will automatically look and feel real, which helps us not only to shorten the design and review process but also skip all photography. As a result any changes can be done almost in real-time and there is no need for traditional photography anymore which is a huge time and cost saver. All our product images on our websites are renderings.

Today I am asking for your feedback in relation to the current design. Do you prefer a keyboard over a desktop version and if yes would you vote for a 4 or 5 octave version. Please remember that the actual features have not yet been decided as we’re still gathering valuable input.

Thanks for your feedback.


Source: Gearslutz 


  1. I think a keyboard version first – loads of desktop machines out there.
    5 octave would be a great choice. I have a Prophet 6 and it’s great but only 4 octave. Really looking forward to this machine. I used sell OBx etc back in the 80s, great machines!

  2. I think that such an iconic synth would be welcomed by many pro synth players of today that never got a chance to buy one in the 80s. I vote for 5 octaves keyboard with aftertouch with regular sized keys. But, with stereo outputs, or multi outputs, usb, midi in out thru and effects or just a delay effect if possible. Also, can you build a dedicated keyboard enclosure for the model D like the Waldorf KB37. Thanks Uli.

  3. I personally prefer 5/8 (but not slim as many as many have already said).
    I am a user of “old synths” and I work as a repair technician for a famous company.
    The idea that a company in 2018 uses the current technology available (reppliche cem or ssm included) and creates a “clone” at competitive prices, I would say it is a WONDERFUL situation !

  4. I invariably answer “both” to this question, so the users can have options, but having the experience of playing an actual OBXa with all its fantastic performance controls, I would say a 5-octave of regular keys will be the smart choice. I know must us run out of space these days but we’re talking in this case about a player’s synth, more like the new Baloran poly, only more cheaper ; )

  5. I have too many claviers already. At this point I want a good controller . I understand poeple new to synths want key versions but they just end up taking up space.. A good clavier just adds expense .. controllers are important and they ara changing . Make me a 500 700 mm ribbon or a dedicated controller module. with good contact, Forget membrame keys .
    Job the higher end stuff out to workshopd for the pros like you would amps.
    Keep the cores as affordable as possible

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