@Christopher: Wow, thanks! Those both look extremely cool, though obviously very much in the synth-and-looper space; they're not trying to be MPE controllers, so are only in a limited sense Orba competitors, though I suppose the increased bar length in the Orba 2 is starting to aspire to the handheld-DAW market. (That said, for $550 you could buy an Orba 2 AND an Instrument 1…)
I feel a little weird about this announcement. While I haven't been following things super closely w/ Artiphon I've felt like the Orba was an experimental creative toy still in development. There just seemed to be so much potential and so much inconsistent/buggy (e.g. unit crashing regularly or the Android App being very rough for example). On a positive note, I thought OrbaSynth was really cool and I look forward to exploring it more.
With Orba 2, I'm not sure why Artiphon would keep supporting the original Orba but I certainly hope so. I think it would be excellent to have a way to export tracks to midi. Folks mentioned that on-board quantization would be nice. Sure it would, but I'd take the ability to just export the songs as midi and do my own quantization in my DAW of choice. That seems feasible even with the limitations on the Orba 1.
This thread has been great and I think ironically has returned to me playing around with the Orba. I've even sussed the timing so much that I am not overly concerned about the lack of quantising. Now that I know its not coming I can get over it for some reason. I think if they could stabilise it and put out a firmware update that resolves the crashing I'd be happy. Have there been any firmware updates at all? I think with the release of the Orbasynth there is potential but I fear it will be forgotten. It will be discontinued I am sure soon. Overall though I fear they've just not put a powerful enough device together in the first version they've released. At 99 dollars/pounds I wonder if they've just not been able to get things to work to make that price? There really is not much around for that amount with the (promised) functionality. I think the 150 price tag for the 2 is really reasonable but of course only if it works and does not crash. Thanks for the tip on the Qun Mk2, that looks great! Plus one on the M8 recommendation. Its the best thing I own. Quality control on that thing is off the chart. £550 is a steal.
Artiphon's Orba-1 Todolist