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The Omnichord will be re-produced to commemorate our 70th anniversary

The Omnichord will be re-produced to commemorate the 70th anniversary of our company.

 

In the 1980s, the electronic musical instrument ‘Omnichord’ gained tremendous popularity among gadget-loving music lovers for its quirky look and tone. We have been receiving requests to resurrect the Omnichord for a long time. And this year, 2023, to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the founding of Suzuki Musical Instruments Manufacturing, we will reproduce the Omnichord! It is scheduled to be released around the fall of 2023. We will update the information on this page from time to time. *The photo is the old model OM-27.

LATEST NEWS 2023.10.17▼



*A photo above is older model, OM-27.

What is Omnichord

It was developed as an electronic musical instrument with an automatic accompaniment function (auto bass chord) equipped with a harp sensor. Anyone can easily play chords, including those who are new to musical instruments and those who are less adept with traditional  instruments. It is played using multiple chord buttons lined up in the centre and a touch sensitive strum plate on the right. Whilst pressing the chord buttons, tap the plate with your finger or slide up and down to play 4 octave sounds to effectively accompany a song. Not only is it easy to play, but its unique appearance and tone makes it a hidden favorite both in Japan and overseas for artists who want to try something different and for non-musicians who want to play music!

History of the Omnichord

Originally development started with a request from an overseas sales company to make an electronic musical instrument like an auto-harp. It started with the electronic musical instrument ‘PC-27’ and the first Omnichord ‘OM-27’ was born with improvements to the interface and functions. Since then, as technology has advanced, we have created numerous models through trial and error in adding more chords, timbres, and designs.

PC-27



An electronic musical instrument that was the predecessor of the OM-27

[Strumplate] 4 octave tone/harp

[Chord] 45 chord

[Body color] Ivory

OM-27

Released in 1981

[Strumplate] 4 octave tone / harp

[Chord] 27 chords

[Rhythm] Rock, Waltz, Slow Rock, Latin Foxtrot, Swing

[Body Color] Brown, Ivory, Red

OM-36 OM-84



1984 Simultaneous release of two models

[Strumplate] 4 octave tones / OM-36 (harp) OM-84 (harp x 2)

[Chord] 84 chords

[Rhythm] Rock 1, Rock 2, Disco, Latin, Country, March, Tango, Blues, Swing, Waltz

[Body color] OM-36 (beige) OM-84 (gray, ivory)

[Remarks] Only OM-84 is equipped with functions such as keyboard, transpose, and chord memory.

*The image is OM-84

OM-100 OM-200M

In 1989 2 models released simultaneously

[Strumplate] 4 octaves Tone/Guitar, Piano, Banjo, Jazz Organ, Flute, Organ, Chime, Brass, Vibe, Synth

[Chord] OM-100 (36 chords) OM-200M (84 chords)

[Rhythm] Rock 1, Rock 2, Disco, Blues, March, Country, Latin, Bossa Nova, Swing, Waltz [Body color] OM-100 (beige) OM-200M (gray)

[Remarks] OM-200M only has functions such as keyboard, transpose, MIDI OUT, and chord memory.

*The image is OM-200M

OM-150 OM-250M

In 1993 Simultaneous release of two models

[Strumplate] 4 octaves Tone / Omnichord, Guitar, Harp, Banjo, Strings, Piano, Organ,

Bossa Nova, Celesta, Marimba, Steel Drum, Bossa Nova

[Chord] 84 chords

[Rhythm] Rock 1, Rock 2, Rock 3, March, Jazz, Country, Bluegrass, Samba, Waltz

[Body color] OM-150 (beige) OM-250M (gray)

[Remarks] OM-250M only had functions such as keyboard, transpose, MIDI OUT, and chord memory.

*The image is OM-250M

OM-300



Released in 1996

[Strumplate] 4 octaves Tones/Omnichord, Guitar Harp Banjo, Strings, Piano, Organ, Celesta, Marimba, Steel drum

[Chord] 84 chords

[Rhythm] Rock 1, Rock 2, Rock 3, March, Jazz, Country, Bluegrass, Bossa Nova, Samba, Waltz

[Body color] beige

Qchord QC-1



Released in 1999 Digital Song Card Guitar

[Strumplate] 4 octaves 100GM tone

[Chord] 36 soft touch buttons, 84 chords

[Rhythm] Bossa Nova Country, Dance, Jazz, New Age, March, Waltz, Ballad, Rock, Blues Shuffle, Bossa Nova

[Remarks] Song data can be played back with song and rhythm cartridges.

Scheduled to be released in the fall of 2023! Reproduced Omnichord

TOPICS

We will release product information little by little towards the release in the Autumn/Fall of 2023. Stay tuned for updates!

About the form and size

NEWS 2023.4.25

The form and size have been decided!

 

The shape of the new Omnichord is based on the still very popular previous models of the OM-27, OM-36 and OM-84, with the curved shape on the left side of the body. In addition, the overall dimensions are one size smaller than the OM-27, making it a compact size that is easier to carry around. Regarding the OM-27, OM-36 and OM-84, which became the basis for the shape of the new Omnichord, we will introduce a little more information  along with the history of Omnichord.

[New model] Size: 460×250 mm

[OM-27] Size: 520 x 280 mm

OM-27 released in 1981

In these days the Omnichord is an electronic musical instrument used by a wide variety of different users, including artists and electronic musical instrument enthusiasts, both in Japan and overseas, but when they first went on sale in Japan, there was the concept of “Let’s ignore the fixed and difficult music theory and think more casually”. We aimed to create an electronic musical instrument, using our experience as an educational musical instrument manufacturer that could be used at home, at school, on trains, planes and ideal for adults and children alike. Although it is no longer available for sale, instructional textbooks were also made for those who play Omnichord for the first time.

About the form

The Omnichord is characterized by its streamlined body. According to ‘Omnichord Communication Paper No. 1’ published in Japan in 1982, this shape seems to express the thinking of a more futuristic musical instrument, with the shape as a motif, symbolizing the form of an overflowing happy tear. The body colour of the OM-27 was brown, red, and ivory. *The image is the colour lineup of the OM-27.

[OM-27 specifications] Size: 520 x 280 mm Weight: 1.7 kg Body color: Brown, Red, Ivory

[OM-36/84 specifications] Size: 520 x 280 mm Weight: 1.4 kg Body color: OM-36 (beige),

OM-84 (grey, ivory)

About specifications

The Omnichord is the world’s first electronic musical instrument with auto-accompaniment, equipped with an auto-harp sensor. Various functions were added to the successor models as technology progressed, but the style of playing by touching the chord buttons and metal strum plates lined up in the centre and being lightweight and easy to carry anywhere was already established from around this time. With the idea that “There’s no dream of a fully automatic electronic instrument! Let’s just sing the melody!” As a keyword, the OM-27 had a total of 27 chords of Eb, Bb, F, C, G, D, A, E, B Major, Minor, Seventh and the tone is one harp pattern. With the OM-36/84, major seventh and augment had been added, expanding the total to 84 chords. In addition, the OM-84 had two patterns of harp sounds, and a memory function that had enabled the player to record chords. This function was groundbreaking at the time, allowing you to play more freely. *The image is OM-84.

※1 From “Omnichord Communication Paper No.1” published in 1982.

Introduction of the Sounds. Vol.1.



NEWS 2023.5.29



Here are just a few of the tones installed on to the new Omnichord.

Please listen to the classic sounds that were installed on to the past models and the sounds that will be revived more beautifully.

The new Omnichord will include several more beautiful tones that were installed on to the previous Omnichords. Stay tuned for more news!

Original Voice 00:00~

The strum plate sound and tone of the OM-27, OM36, and OM84 was produced by analog circuits. The new Omnichord also uses some analog technology to bring this original sound back to life!

 

This sound, which is unique to analog circuits, should be something that makes you feel, ‘This is the Omnichord.’

 

Harp 0:14~

The beautiful tone that was installed on to the original OM-250M and OM-300 was resurrected with even higher sound quality on to the new Omnichord.

Celeste 0:22~

This is also a beautiful tone originally installed on to the OM-250 and OM-300. This is also resurrected with even higher sound quality.

Introduction of the Sounds. Vol.2.

NEWS 2023.6.29

On the New Omnichord, by layering two sounds on to the strumplate, it makes it possible to add more expression to the sound.

0:00~ Original Voice + OM-84 Vibrato Voice

The OM-84 had two electric harp sounds that could be layered. The new Omnichord perfectly replicates this same feature of the OM-84.

0:16~ FM piano + Mellow Synth. Pad

A mellow synth pad is layered on to a glittering electric piano with an FM tone generator.

0:24~ Acoustic Piano + Synth/Strings

Synth strings are layered on tothe sound of an acoustic piano.

0:34~ 0:49 Original Voice + Synth/Strings

Synth/strings are layered on to anelectric harp tone.

Introduction of the Sounds Vol.3

NEWS 2023.7.28

We will introduce a little about the chords. In the reproduction model, “sus4 / add9” this will be a newly added. Please listen to the performance using these chord variations.

Introducing the new OM-108!The model number of the reproduced Omnichord has been decided as OM-108. The model number not only differentiates the product from previous models, but also indicates its features and functions. In the table below, you can view the model number and specifications of the older models.

Model Year of release Strum plate Chord
OM-27 1981 4 octaves,

Tone/Harp
27 chords
OM-36, OM-84 1984 4 octaves

Tone/OM-36(Harp), 
OM-84(Harp x 2)
84 chords
OM-100,

OM-200M
1989 4 octaves

Tone/ Guitar, Piano, 
Banjo,

Jazz Organ, Flute, 
Organ, Chime, Brass, Vibraphone, Synth.
84 chords
OM-150,

OM-250M
1993 4 octaves

Tone/ Omnichord, Guitar


Harp, Banjo, Strings, Piano,

Organ, Celeste, Marimba,

Steel drum
84 chords
OM-300 1996 4 octaves

Tone/ Omnichord, Guitar, Harp, Banjo, Strings, Piano, 
Organ, Celeste, Marimba,

Steel drum
84 chords
QC-1 1999 4 octaves / 100GM tone 36 soft touch buttons,

84 chords



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Introduction of the Sounds Vol.4

NEWS 2023.9.7This time, we will introduce three rhythm patterns that will be installed in the New Omnichord OM-108. Playing along with preset rhythm patterns is one of the joys of the Omnichord. In addition, the OM-108’s rhythm patterns have been updated to include a more contemporary selection than it’s predecessors. Please listen to the performance that combines the tones and chords introduced so far! 

Rock1/ 0:00~

An oldies rock rhythm that has been installed in many previous Omnichords.

Hip Hop/ 0:17~

Equipped with trap beat for the first time in Omnichord.

Funk/0:43~1:11

A disco funk pattern is also installed for the first time as an Omnichord.

Notice of postponement of the new Omnichord release

LATEST NEWS 2023.10.17

We would like to inform you that the release date of the new Omnichord OM-108, which was scheduled for the Autumn/Fall 2023, will be postponed.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused to customers who have been eagerly looking forward to the release.

We will be exhibiting the Omnichord OM-108 and announcing the new official release date at the Winter NAMM showto be held in Los Angeles, USA from January 25, 2024.

In the meantime we continue to improve and refine specifications, in order to provide our customers with the best performance experience possible with the new Omnichord.



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