Managed to get lucky and get my hands on Teenage Engineering's new sequencer/synth/all-in-one portable music studio thing. In order to work out the details of it for myself I set about condensing the manual. I ended up with three pages of quick reference details that you can print, fold up and keep with your OP-Z so you can play with it without hooking it up to a screen. Links below.
- The interface is a lot like the Pocket Operators in that you hold down a button to change the meaning of a set of other buttons. (The OP-Z is essentially a professional-grade PO.) Page 3 below has diagrams that show this.
- At first, tapping shift to change parameter pages for each track can seem like a huge amount of information to memorize, but as you can see on Page 1 below, the colors are consistent across tracks and the functions rarely change. Memorize the meaning of the five colors (main, ADSR, LFO, ARP, FX) and you're well on your way.
- Only two parameters act like menus with specific choices instead of a range of values. (LFO destination and ARP pattern)
- The yellow and red dials are always filter and resonance for drums, synths, FX and main.
- Punch-in effects are almost identical for the drum side and the synth side, with just three buttons behaving differently.
- There are three types of step components. They seem to be rhythm-based, note/sound-based, and programming-based. The last three (the spark components) have very little associated documentation for now.
- Step buttons change colors, and this is what they mean:
Tutorials and resources:
- Cuckoo's video tutorial
- Jaanus Verberk's video tutorial collection
- drlbradley's printable manual
- Gero's samples guide
- Francois Pé's TouchOSC layouts
Download A4 pdf files here:
- Page 1: Synths, parameters, buttons
- Page 2: Step components and punch-in effects
- Page 3: Hold-down buttons that change everything else