OB-4 Wishlist

What do you guys wish to see added/changed on the OB-4? I use it every single day, as my main speaker for listening to music (and messing with it in the process), for watching movies (connects to my Apple TV instantly and can switch back and forth from iOS devices really seamlessly), for small portable music setups, and for one of my favorite use cases: sleep. I have insomnia pretty bad, and the noise machine built in is a godsend, as well as the ambient mode with the sleep timer. I often like to listen to recordings of singing bowls through it, it really helps me sleep. Kudos to TE for creating a great zen machine.

So, for me I am much more biased into wanting more lifestyle-based additions as opposed to sampler-like features. So here’s my wishlist, but I am super curious what other people think up as well.

  1. Alarm Clock: The OB-4 could truly be the perfect alarm clock and I know TE has mentioned it in the past. If you look at clocks like the Loftie, you can see where I’m coming from. We’ve already gotten timer functionality in the display, and essentially alarms are just loops any way. It would be awesome to be able to set up a single alarm and have it play a saved loop, a radio station, mantras, etc. Also with stuff like an alarm fading up slowly for soft wake ups. Snooze functionality would be easy as well, even controlled with the ortho remote. I think this would be a really awesome addition.

  2. Updated Mantra mode. I legitimately never use the Mantra mode, but I have been through all of them extensively and they’re pretty impressive. You can hear that theres a lot of low sample rate stuff going on, and if you listen to the 5th mantra, you can hear some wild delay time adjustment stuff going on. Not sure if the whole thing is a really long sample with all of those effects baked in, or if theres actually some sort of delay algorithm built into the OB-4. I can’t really say, but if it isn’t, it would be REALLY cool to have a whole mantra interface, separate from the saved loops, where maybe you could import audio and have some sort of effects algorithms you could put on them (bit crushing/sample reduction, delay, reverb. etc). If this functionality is built in already it could totally be something we see added in some shape or form. Continuing on the mantra idea…

  3. Raga Mode: This is a no-brainer and I’m shocked they haven’t implemented this already. If you don’t know what Shruti boxes do, they are digital (sometimes analog) drone machines used to accompany singers and musicians. You often have control of tone, key, and sometimes even individual oscillators. They are usually in nice rectangular box form as well… I honestly feel like they wanted to implement this into the Mantra Mode but never did it. This would be fantastic for musical purposes as well as meditation purposes. Bonus would be Tanpura drones as well, and maybe even tabla loops, etc. This is something I am really hoping for.

  4. Instrument Tuner: Who knows if maybe there’s a mic in there, but even with the built in input it could totally be implemented. Arrows/lines are used in the display during looping, so you can already imagine how it would be visually work – up/down and a center line, etc. Not the coolest thing you could do but still kinda useful.

  5. Updated Ambient Mode: I love the algorithm built in, but I’ve had my OB-4 for 3 months and already am starting to get a little bored of the Ambient Mode. It tends to do a lot of the same kind of chord progressions, it’s really cool and the mood goes from relaxing, uplifting, to downright creepy. But I do wish there were a couple other algorithms you could choose from, maybe something more minor key, something designed to work better with speech, etc. Also, I REALLY hope they add the ability to change the pitch of the source audio in Ambient Mode like you can normally. I could see how maybe it’s not possible, but if it was it would be a great way to listen to slowed down jams.

  6. Loop Export: I see a lot of people wanting to export save loops. I know that’s a popular request but I’m not totally convinced it would even work, seeing as there’s some beat detection/time stretching that’s used, but I could totally be wrong. It’s not something I care that much about, though I have filled up my saved loops buffer and then some, I’m looping all the time on this thing, and definitely REALLY love some of the loops I’ve made, and while I’ve mic’d and sampled them before, it is kinda sad to see them go eventually. But it’s also kind of the beauty of the machine.

So what do you guys think? Any cool ideas for the functionality of this amazing multi-purpose media instrument? I love this thing so much and really hope to see the Disk Mode gain some more functionality and for fun and inspiring modes to be added. I’d also like to see more functionality built into the Ortho Remote, which I think is a great design. I know it has the ability to do Bluetooth MIDI, and that the OB-4 quite possibly has Bluetooth MIDI as well, so who knows what musical devices could be added. Step Sequencer? Theremin? The list goes on. Let’s hear your ideas!


All excellent suggestions!

I’d really love some eq/sound design presets.

And on the cosmetic side of things, someone to make different coloured perspex (3D printed)slip cases, where the OB4 could just drop into.

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EQ would be great, especially with presets as I listen to music, audio books, and use it for movies in bed as well. Could be a game changer.

Oh man I really want some cases, especially with some sort of aluminum grills built in. I traveled with it to San Fransisco and it fit perfectly in my backpack but I was a little scared of the speaker cones getting damaged. I don’t think the mesh bag would cut it.

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Just general OB-4 discussion, I listened to a bunch of music with the OB-4 leaning facing the wall from some distance, using the handle as a stand. It sounded totally different, I believe this is probably closer to the OD-11 type of sound, as it definitely sounded wider and certain details were really pronounced. It’s totally crazy, I think this might be my preferred way of listening to music. And now I’m looking into a pair of OD-11’s. The handle, however, really doesn’t work very well as a stand, and I have to be really careful making sure it won’t fall and scratch my furniture.


maybe use a piece of good quality, thick cardboard and attach the two ends to the side of the unit with velcro.