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Orba hacking knowledge base

This thread is intended to gather the feedback of Orba tinkerers.

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Hey! Thanks for the much needed topic. Can anyone write a briefly intelligible instruction for adding presets to android, for example? Thank you in advance! 

Hey Max, on Android it is a bit problematic as adding a new preset (i.e. an XML file) would require root permit to access the filesystem location involved.

I've read a workaround in this thread @pag. 3 I think it's your best shot, but it always requires mediation via the desktop Orba app. I am afraid there are no better solutions ATM.

"As a workaround, you could load up the modified presets onto your Orba using a PC, then save a new Song on your Android (or probably also iPhone) device. This will save an entire song with Drums, Base, Chords and Lead everytime, but it also includes the modified diatonic Lead voice."

Adding presets to the Desktop Orba app has been already covered in this thread at the very beginning.

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Andrea, thanx for your great work! I will try it on desktop app- not have yet, problem with usb connection -  win7 dont have driver for device. But thanx for advise! 

I made an absolutely disgusting hack (thread here, Windows only) to automatically tune the Orba based on what song you're listening to. It involves gluing a streaming service to a Firefox Extension, to a small server running on your computer, to AutoIt for clicking on the necessary buttons to change the key of the Orba.

Granted, if Antiphon provides an API to do this it would be a whole lot easier :)

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@ Casey: Nice combination!

Unfortunately I only use the Orba of all ingredients ... ;-)

Where ale the Audio and MIDI recorded files located in Android and Windows ? I want to export, buy I can't find them

Hi all, 

Just get my Orba and also new to any musical instruments, having read via the forum and found some guys are able to make presets themselves. I would like to make preset with sounds like basic wooden guitar, can anyone throw some lights to me?  Sorry if the question is too dumb.

@ Mick: I would if I could.

It would be nice if Artiphon gave some clues to editing presets.

You can use the editor Roger Mepham made.  Or take an existing preset and edit in a text-editor.

I'm afraid it's more or less a matter of randomly adjusting values, saving the preset, loading it into the Orba and trying it out...

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An example of just messing around...


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@ GJ van Mulbregt

Thanks for answering, wonder if theoretically, is not it with the right config, i can get any sound i want? ( tried for a while achieve nothing but ruining the presets :P)

@ Mick: 

I think it is possible to emulate 'real' instruments on the Orba. But of course it remains a small synthesizer with technical limitations.

It would be nice if Artiphon would be a bit more transparent about the possibilities. Now we are very dependent on the Artiphon design team. And that team has not been known for speed so far.

Stating the obvious: Re-installing the app will bring back the standard presets you lost.


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I can see that there are many capable hands here, if Artiphon team is willing to give some code or so, guess this can be done in the blink of an eye. Hope the team can hear us (finger cross)

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Hi guys, I need help please. 

I want to use my orba to send chords to my Tyros 5. 

I used the preset Orba Open and copied it. 

Because I want the following chords to play when pressing 1-8

C C7 Em F G Am G7 D7

Currently Orba Open plays

C Dm Em F G Am G C 

How do I change the values to fix those chord (the numbers seem to be starting with 

48 ---> 55 

How can I do this to produce a C7 or a G7 or D7?


I haven't had the Orba long enough, nor have I followed this thread long enough, nor have I had a chance to experiment with any of the hacks, so I can't give you a very satisfactory answer straight away, but I can tell you how I would approach this problem with just an out-of-the-box Orba and no hacking tools.

There are two parts to your problem. First, you want dominant sevenths and currently there is only one CHORD preset that gives you 7ths. Even worse, the 7ths that you get are the diatonic sevenths - Cmaj7, Dm7, Em7, Fmaj7, G7, Am7, G7/B, and C6. That C6 is interesting, but that's another story. I actually like this preset a lot, but it doesn't help you.

The second part to your problem is that you want a D7 (dominant) which has a major third, not a minor third. 

So, let's talk about the first part of the problem first. I know this is unsatisfactory, and hopefully Artiphon will address this soon, but you can always substitute a major chord for a dominant 7th chord and it sounds OK if you're playing with others. So having a C and a C7 is redundant if you're willing to live with a chord substitute. That means that you could cover your C7 with a C, your G7 with a G, and your D7 with a D. That means that the only problematic chord given the default out-of-the-box CHORD preset would be the D which is a Dm instead of a D which is what you need.

It looks like you're basically wanting to cover G blues. If you are willing to deal with "major for 7th" chord substitutes until Artiphon get's their stuff together, you could instead switch to the key of G. That would give you G, Am, Bm, C, D, Em, D/F#, G'. Substituting your C for a C7, your G for a G7, and your D for a D7, that gives you all of the substitutes that you need. 

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In the "Orba presets sharing point" thread, Stuart Crouch demonstrates how to create presets for alternative lead scale tunings, which is a brilliant discovery, but these overwrite the currently loaded drum sounds.

Here's a process for creating a "Tuning-only" preset, using Dorian as an example.

1) Make a copy of the “Orba.orbapreset” file from the “Drums” folder somewhere

2) Rename the file to “Dorian.orbapreset”

3) I used Notepad++ for this. Edit the file to remove everything except the header line, the "TuningEntry", and its outer "PresetEntry" as shown here:


Change the "name" entry to "Dorian" and change the numbers in the "tuning" list to a Dorian scale. (The "intervals" don't seem to matter.)

4) Copy it back into the “Lead” subfolder of "Presets"

5) Run the Orba app and load a song, eg the “Orba” song

6) Go to presets and load the “Dorian” preset

Your lead will now be tuned to the Dorian notes you entered without affecting anything else. 

The key seems to be the "percussion" type specified in these presets; it doesn't work with the "tonal" type usually found in lead presets.

You can change bass tuning with the same file; simply copy it into the Bass subfolder instead. 

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