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  OSCar At a Glance
Click for larger view arrowReleased: 1983  Specifications
arrowUser rating: 4.2/5 |  Read reviews (12)
Nils Ødegaard (NILS@stud.oks-as.hioslo.no) writes:
The OSCar was English synth designer Chris Huggett's baby, into which he incorporated ideas found in earlier products of his. This compact rubber thing has numerous cool features, like: Two wide-range DCO's, capable of producing both analogue-style waveforms and programmable digital additive waveforms; dual resonant multimode VCF's with overdrive and separation controls; a wide-range LFO; two additional LFO's for PWM; an internal clock for driving the internal sequencer or arpeggiator; memory locations for storing your own sounds, waveforms and sequences, and one ADSR and one ADSR/DAD envelope. Soundwise, the OSCar is very flexible, and it's easy to make interesting and varied sounds with it, eg realistic vocal impersonations, mellow synthleads, ambient drones, brutal basses etc. I'm not quite sure how many OSCars were produced, but I think mine are among the last ones, and they have serial numbers 403 and 472. If anyone has more specific details (or an OSCar with later ser. no.), please mail me , as I am very interested to find out!

Lennart Regebro (regebro@stacken.kth.se) writes:
This is one weird keyboard. The manual says that it is completely digital, but it behaves like a subtractive analog synth. If it really is fully digital (I haven't opened it to check) it predates the current trend of pseudo-analog synths with more than ten years!

In any case, the oscillator is digital. It has preprogrammed Triangle, Sawtooth, Square and PWM waveforms (and a noise generator), but you can create your own waveforms by additative synthesis. It has a flexible arpeggiator, but the software revision (M2?) in the one I'm using has a bug, which makes it useless.

The best parts is the filters and the LFO. The filters with it's dual 12db filter design is very nice, and I have always has a seriously weak spot for Random LFO's (or Sample and Hold as Korg used to call them). To bad you can't sync it to MIDI, though.

The Sequencer is primitive by todays standards, but since you can set the step rate to almost any MIDI clock division you can get it to play septets or whatever. Very fun, if useless.

It uses the keyboard for most performance type settings, you also select patches and pattern with the keyboard. It's innovative and saves buttons, but of course makes it hard to switch sounds quickly. The only way it communicates to use, is by a total of six leds, where one is the 'beat'. Cryptic, to say the least.

In general, it was extremely innovative when released, very flexible and very hard to use. The sounds have a slight digital edge, thanks to the additative sythesis, and the sharp filters, I think.

If you find it cheap, buy it, because it can make some totally outlandish noises.

Comments About the Sounds:
Can produce anything from the fattest, distorted basses, to sharp, noisy, screeching (you name it) sounds.

(Thanks to Nils Ødegaard for this info.)
and Emiel Rooijackers for the pic

Links for the Oxford Synthesiser Company OSCar
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 More Synth Gear  Best US prices on many current models
x The OSCar Homepage Fansite dedicated to the OSCar synth
x My show off page Info and opinions on synths I own or owned
x OXFORD SYNTHESIZER COMPANY OSCar ULTRA RARE Analog Synths
x www.analogjapan.com has one oscar oxford midi, latest version,have a look !
x OSCar_manual.pdf (11,458KB)

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