The CTC Guide to Getting Started With the OP-1

Beginners Guide to the OP-1

The OP-1 is an incredibly unique and powerful synthesizer, popular due to its one-of-a-kind appearance, style and sound. It is a capable tool for sound design, sampling and even recording, however its unorthodox appearance may make operation difficult for the new user. 

This guide will provide you with the basic knowledge needed to navigate this synth, however the possibilities are endless. 

OP-1 Diagram

Presets and Sound Design. 

By pressing the synth key on the left, you can reach a wide variety of presets and parameters. The buttons numbered 1-8 are all presets and can be altered using the 1-4 buttons under the window. Holding, shift and any of these numbers will allow you to edit. 

Number 1 - Synth type 
Number 2 - ADSR 
Number 3 - Effects 
Number 4 - LFO 

Using the four knobs on the top these parameters can be edited, to have extensive control over the sound. 

Drum Machine

Drums can be accessed by pressing the green button to the right on the synthesizer button. The same parameters can be used in editing the drums as the synth, with the option to load your own samples available.  


The OP-1 records to tape, which the button can be found to the right of the drum button.
There are four tracks available which can be found under the window. The orange knob on the right can be used to adjust the volume. You can also change tempo and add a metronome within the OP-1.

Other Tips

The button to the right of number 8 activates the sequencer. Pressing shift and the sequencer button allows you to choose which type of sequencer will be activated. 

Playback options, and octave up buttons can be found to the bottom left.

The intention of this guide is to give you some tools and knowledge in order to get the most out of your experience with the OP-1. The synth is truly one of a kind and can be used in so many different ways. If any additional help is needed, don't be afraid to ask a CTC employee. 

If you want to learn more about the OP-1 here are a couple resources that dig deeper into the synth and its capabilities. 

OP-1 Manual

Youtube Tutorials

Training Subject
Sampling Sequencing Sound Design Synthesis
Last modified
Fri, Jan 13th 2023