ARP Odyssey Mark III
|Manufacturer||ARP Instruments, Inc.
Korg Inc. (from 2015)
|Dates||1972 - 1981
2015 - Present
|LFO||Sine, Square, S&H|
|Synthesis type||Analog Subtractive|
The ARP Odyssey is an analog synthesizer introduced in 1972. Responding to pressure from Moog Music to create a portable, affordable (the Minimoog was US$1,495 upon release) "performance" synthesizer, ARP Instruments, Inc. scaled down its ARP 2600 synthesizer and created the Odyssey, which became their best-selling synthesizer model.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (November 2015)
The Odyssey is a two-oscillator analog synthesizer, and one of the first with duophonic capabilities (the ability to play two notes at the same time). All parameters, including a resonant low-pass filter, a non-resonant high-pass filter, ADSR and AR envelopes, a triangle and square wave LFO, and a sample-and-hold function are controllable with sliders and switches on the front panel.
ARP Odysseys produced between 1972 and 1975, referred to as Mark I, were white-faced Odysseys that used a 2-pole voltage-controlled filter, which were similar to Oberheim SEM modules. Some late models used a black and gold color scheme and include CV/gate jacks like the later Mark II's. These earlier units contained a greater number of internal adjustments and were slightly more difficult to calibrate.
Odyssey Mark II's were produced between 1975 and 1978. They are largely similar to Mark I's; the main differences are the use of the black and gold color scheme and the inclusion of CV/gate in all models. These models also use a four-pole VCF, which were similar in design to Moog's four-pole filter. Subsequent models, however, use a different four-pole low-pass filter designed by ARP, the 4075 filter. A later filter with a similar design, the 4072, was used in the 2600, Omni, Axxe, Solus, and other ARP instruments.
While earlier models had used a simple rotary knob to control pitch bend, The Mark III introduced proportional pitch control (PPC). PPC used pressure-sensitive buttons to control bend up, bend down, and vibrato. ARP included PPC on other instruments, and also offered a kit to add PPC to earlier Odyssey synthesizers.
Mark III Odysseys also have unbalanced XLR outputs, in addition to unbalanced 1/4" outputs.
The Mark III was cosmetically overhauled to feature a redesigned chassis and orange and black color scheme, which was consistent with other contemporary ARP instruments.
Production of the Odyssey Mark III ceased when ARP Instruments declared bankruptcy in 1981.
The ARP Odyssey was reissued by Korg in 2015. The new Odyssey's analog signal path is similar to the original, with some additional modern features:
The color scheme is similar to the Mark III, although Mark I and II styles were available in limited editions. All of Korg's reissues use the PPC.
The Korg ARP Odyssey is 86% of the size of the original ARP models. The keyboard is similarly reduced in size, and referred to as "Slim Keys" by Korg.
Similar in size to the panel of Korg's reissued Odyssey keyboard. Includes minor MIDI implementation improvements.
A limited edition, full-size reproduction of the original Odyssey, available in all three classic ARP colour schemes.
On Nov 1, 2016 Korg announced the Arp Odyssei for iOS.