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Analogue vs Digital Part 2 - (Diva vs OB8)
View Poll Results: Which is Synth A?
OB8
108 Votes - 54.27%
Diva
91 Votes - 45.73%
Voters: 199. You may not vote on this poll

Old 21st August 2015
  #1
Gear Guru
 
SWAN808's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Analogue vs Digital Part 2 - (Diva vs OB8)

A new test finally finished!

Nice and simple - can you tell which Synth is Diva and which is the OB8?





By the way - Synth A and B are the same in both videos - so final answer is simple A or B - enter the poll!

Some of you may remember the previous test last year.

I started comparing back then in 2014 and have been working away since. The previous song test I posted in 2014 was just a part. At the time I threatened to post another test and finally here it is-some of the individual sounds and also another song test because why not. I started these tests with the idea to demonstrate the differences and but its actually difficult to pin down because they are not always consistent and slight differences in parameters can throw you off. I have more thoughts about this which I may write about later if anyone's interested.

Some of you may complain that I have not done individual A/B but I like doing it like this because Im not trying to ultimately settle the issue (which IMO is very difficult and subjective), but just explore it for myself and challenge what people may think. If you really want to test yourself you can download the wav files, cut them up and put them in an ABX software.

I ended up spending so long taking sounds from my OB8 that I decided I should make a preset pack so people can have the sounds with custom GUIs - and the thread about that is here.

Song Test Wav
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByO...ew?usp=sharing

A/B Test wav
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByO...ew?usp=sharing

I look forward to the answers

Last edited by SWAN808; 21st August 2015 at 04:01 PM..
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Old 21st August 2015
  #2
Oh boy! Here we go again.

I need to go get the Senn's on my head to have a listen. On my iPhone speaker I can't tell :-P
Old 21st August 2015
  #3
Lives for gear
 

I voted Diva for A.

But what do I know .
Old 21st August 2015
  #4
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Yoozer's Avatar
I think the Oberheim is A. There's a very slight "twang" I hear in the pitch - perhaps because the processor is not fast enough to set the correct control voltage?
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Old 21st August 2015
  #5
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abruzzi's Avatar
 

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Old 21st August 2015
  #6
Great job Swan! Most of the sounds I can tell no difference at all. There are a few I hear a slight difference, but even most of those there isn't much to go on. I'm going to have to go with my gut concerning brightness and the sound of the PWM at a few parts, and say that the OB8 is A. Would not be shocked if I was wrong, as I was last time.

Diva rocks!
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Old 21st August 2015
  #7
Lives for gear
the B one is somewhat duller in the highs so i chose Diva for A; not sure that makes sense now lol...
Old 21st August 2015
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robwood View Post
the B one is somewhat duller in the highs so i chose Diva for A; not sure that makes sense now lol...
Same here.

Cheers Robwood. At least I'm not gonna be the only one that gets it wrong.

I also thought B had a softer attack in the second video too, which I associate with my Matrix 1000.

Now I'm just confused.
Old 21st August 2015
  #9
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SWAN808's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
by the way if anyone tries to be clever and guess via the noise floor you will likely get it wrong - I inserted noise all over the place to make it fair on Diva...
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Old 21st August 2015
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by SWAN808 View Post
by the way if anyone tries to be clever and guess via the noise floor you will likely get it wrong - I inserted noise all over the place to make it fair on Diva...
I noticed
Old 21st August 2015
  #11
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lineofcontrol's Avatar
 

Wow. That is too close to tell apart really.

Can't guess at all through my phone speakers!
Old 21st August 2015
  #12
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Thread Starter
phone speakers?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Old 21st August 2015
  #13
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Muser's Avatar
I mainly judged by the full track, which I thought worked best.
I thought A worked significantly better, to the point I didn't like B
but I did like A.
Old 21st August 2015
  #14
nobody cares bro!
 
Don Solaris's Avatar
I liked A.

Still, very good CEM emulation.
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Old 21st August 2015
  #15
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grumphh's Avatar
 

Those are pretty similar, but i vote A as being the OB-8 - in some sounds it just sounds a teensy weeny bit smoother. Most notably in the last test of the blind test.
And of course i may be entirely wrong, as i think that both synths would do just fine for any kind of music that needed those sounds...

I didn't even bother to listen to the sounds in the song, because in a mix i'm lost...

However, to me it seems that you didn't get the levels quite right - synth B is a bit lower in perceived volume on a few patches which may help in making it seem "less dense" or cutting or whatever...
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Old 21st August 2015
  #16
Gear Maniac
 

Thanks for the redux!

I voted Diva for A. . .

Was impressive last time, but just incredibly close sounds.

Voice panning often gives away the OB8 for me, and led to my vote. . . but would be an easy way to trick me too.

My confidence is low this year whereas last time I clearly heard the power fluxes give away the OB8.

I don't use any software instruments but have to say Diva sounds excellent.
Old 21st August 2015
  #17
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
 

Impressive job!
I'm guessing A is the OB8.
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Old 21st August 2015
  #18
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VennD68's Avatar
This is hard - shows how far plug ins have come.
I'm going for A as the OB8 also just for the way the resonance glues to the cut-off in the filter sweep.
Nice sounds and great demo by the way.
I never do well on these and if i picked the digital don't be surprised as I have had a soft spot for good digital synths for years.
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Old 21st August 2015
  #19
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muziksculp's Avatar
 

Good Job.

They sound quite similar, but I think Diva is B. Although I'm listening to the test audio on my mini-Bluetooth speakers via my laptop. So, not the best monitoring system, since I'm not in my studio.

Will be fun, to know if I guessed right.

Cheers,
Muziksculp
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Old 21st August 2015
  #20
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pulsar modular's Avatar
Close, but A sounds slightly better so I am guessing that's the OB8.
Old 21st August 2015
  #21
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Jamie munro's Avatar
 

I'll go A as diva, mainly envelope making me think it.

Regardless this is another clear example of how far software has come, great work swan btw

Oh, the poll doesn't work on iPad for some reason so you'll have to count my vote for A as diva.
Old 21st August 2015
  #22
Hmmm gonna guess OB is A and Diva is B.

awfully close
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Old 21st August 2015
  #23
Lives for gear
 

I'm guessing Diva is A, using laptop speakers only!

I prefered the sound of B...
Old 21st August 2015
  #24
Gear Maniac
 

Even listening on my Macbook Air with headphones I can hear a slight difference in the sound. I guess OB8 is synth A. I like synth A better too, just sounds a little fuller and smoother. That being said, I wouldn't spend the money on an OB8 considering all the options we have now.
Old 21st August 2015
  #25
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FilmNMusicman's Avatar
 

LOL great test BTW.

It really shows how far software has come. And by the results so far it's not unanimous one was or the other. And that's probably between people who use synths everyday.

As far as I'm concerned, hardware isn't better than software, and analog isn't better than software purely based on sound quality.

I voted for Synth A to be DIVA. (because Synth A sounded BETTER to my ears) I'm probably right lol
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Old 21st August 2015
  #26
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jbuonacc's Avatar
really cool test, great job.

just listened to the first one so far. what really stuck out to me was the difference in the vibrato on the lead, where A sounded much more defined (pretty typical sound though, i'd be surprised if B couldn't do it as well with more attention to this). this, along with feeling like B is a bit brighter/snappier (which i think i actually preferred at the start of the track) has me thinking that A is the OB-8. ??

either way, very close.
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Old 21st August 2015
  #27
Synth A is the OB-8. The polyphonic portamento and unison patches seem like a dead giveaway. I will be shocked if I am wrong. The rest of the patches were very well matched. I have an OB-8 but never used Diva.
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Old 21st August 2015
  #28
It is interesting to me that a lot of people are choosing which one sounds best, and assuming that that must be the Oberheim. Not a lot of the time, but there are definitely times where I am composing with diva, which I do often, and I simply cannot make a patch that sounds as good with my analog Polys. Now, I certainly don't have an OB-8, but I made my choice based on characteristics that I hear more frequently in analog versus software VA, not which sounded "better".


Swan, I was wondering what your thoughts were on mixing down a track with software versus hardware recordings? I find for some reason that it's easier to mix down hardware recordings, even when they sound very similar. It's like the analog hardware has a presence, and I'm not just talking transient type sounds though often that is true with shorter envelopes, the analog VCA can make a much sharper transient which maybe sticks out in a mix with less gain.

Even looking at a spectrum analyzer, the harmonics look different. The analog appears more defined, while the software seems like it has more harmonics.....or it looks fizzy. Not sure I'm using the correct terminology here. Long story short, it seems like there is more headroom available when I use analog hardware. I'm not even talking using dozens of oscillators with panning and spread, as thise type of oatches are a dead giveaway. I just mean record the software in mono, using one or two oscillators...keeping things as they are in the hardware world.

Maybe you can comment after the votes are in and we have a result?
Old 21st August 2015
  #29
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I'll bite
A is the OB-8
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Old 21st August 2015
  #30
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NuG3nda's Avatar
 

great A/B comparison video !!

Listening on laptop speakers .. hard to tell on the first video but it was clearer on 2nd video and it confirmd what I heard on vid #1 ... synth B was more fuzzy, OSC seemed a little more free (tune not as stable) and bit warmer on some of the releases while A was more precise..

So
B is the OB
A is diva


again laptop speakers but really impressed by diva.. a solid VST bravo!
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