10 years ago OMG Instruments released the BlueARP plugin, now it’s back and in hardware form as the BlueARP DM desktop arpeggiator and step-sequencer.
The original BlueARP plugin was a complex arpeggiating MIDI plugin that was free to use and available on all plugin formats for Windows and macOS. Reworking it into a hardware desktop device is a great thing to do and perfectly captures the mood of people wanting more tactile and less DAW-based creativity in their lives.
The BlueARP DM has been knocking around on YouTube in various stages of development for a couple of years but now it’s ready to arrive on the desktops of people who need 8-channels of arpeggiation. And if you need arpeggiation then this is definitely the device for you.
BlueARP DM essentially takes 8 instances of the BlueARP plugin and runs them on a Cortex-M4 ARM CPU. It brings out a lot of the functionality to the front panel with the row of 16 buttons, LEDs and whatnot, but it’s also menu and screen focused with those good looking dual OLED screens, navigation buttons and encoder. The displays mirror the options and complexity you’ll find in the plugin so you are certainly losing none of the power of the software version, but that also means retaining some of the software/screen elements.
The possibilities are huge though. You can run 8 different arpeggiations in parallel, running out to multiple MIDI machines and CV based synths. You can have up to 64 steps in a pattern/program and 128 programs on each channel and up to 16 chains – it’s a ridiculous amount of arpeggiation!
In terms of connections, you have 2 MIDI inputs for setting the notes, 4 MIDI outputs for you MIDI synths and 4 analog outputs that can act as CV or Gates. It also has a clock input and an SD card for storing presets.
There’s a lot of deep editing available in the device which lends itself to be more of a step-sequencer than just an arpeggiator. It’s the instant nature of an arpeggiator that I really like and within the complexity of BlueARP DM that simplicity still manages to shine through – at I hope it does!
They have just been released for sale, although the Russian based store appears to be out of stock at the moment. OMG Instruments suggests that you should preorder if the site allows or contact them to be put on a waiting list. The price is $730 plus shipping which seems expensive although these are all hand-built in very small quantities. A white version will be available in April.
- OMG Instruments BlueARP DM: OMG Instruments