Suzuki brings back the modern 1981 omnichord


Suzuki revives its 1981 electronic musical instrument named Omnichord into a modernized portable music maker OM-108. The compact instrument can produce harp sounds using one finger and up to 108 tones that reminisce the sounds of the 80s. It comes with a strumplate, similar to a laptop’s touchpad, where the user can glide one finger and generate sounds resembling an electronic harp. On the left side, the chord buttons play lively sounds that can recall those used in anime or animated movies. Suzuki already exhibited the new Omnichord OM-108 model at the NAMM show held in Anaheim, California, between January 25th and 28th, 2024, ahead of its July 2024 global release.

suzuki electronic omnichord
images and video stills courtesy of Suzuki



108 chords for the new Omnichord om-108


Suzuki’s Omnichord OM-108 comes with a built-in speaker, so the user can play whenever and wherever they are. If they want to focus on listening to the layers of their sounds or share what they have been experimenting with, the electronic musical instrument can be connected to an external amplifier or headphones for an immersive and collective musical experience. Suzuki says that its new Omnichord can play 108 chords just by pressing a couple of chord buttons from the voice and pattern sections – located on the upper part of the chords – and the user can even create overlapping sounds if they wish. To play the electronic Omnichord, the user can either plug it to a power source using its dedicated AC adapter or cordless using eight AA batteries.

suzuki electronic omnichord
Suzuki’s electronic Omnichord can play 108 chords



Suzuki adds a Multiple-function control 


With the new Omnichord, Suzuki adds a function that allows the user to change the way they play the chords and rhythms, such as playing at a free tempo, adding bass accompaniment, or starting with a drum prelude. For a more custom sound production, the user can even send their chords, strumplate, and drum performances through Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) where the strumplate tones can be sent on two separate channels that enable the layering of tones. Some of the sounds from Omnichord’s predecessors have been kept, including the electric FM piano, which was all the rage in the 1980s, as Suzuki claims, and the celeste and harp sounds from the multiple models from the past.

suzuki electronic omnichord
Suzuki’s electronic Omnichord brings back the sounds of the 80s



Suzuki released its first-ever Omnichord in 1981. The company says it thrived around Europe and America, setting its own standard as a portable electronic musical instrument with a strumplate. After the first release, six more models came out, all with different variations from the number of chords to the style of rhythms offered. A singular vein that remained intact was the design of the Omnichord, which could be compared to a ukulele or mini electric guitar. Suzuki discontinued producing the Omnichord after the OM-300, which was released in 1996, but over 40 years later, it returns with the modernized OM-108. Suzuki says the new Omnichord is expected to be in stock by July 2024 at its distributors around the world.

suzuki electronic omnichord
the user can change the way they play the chords and rhythms with Suzuki’s new electronic Omnichord

suzuki electronic omnichord
the strumplate that can play the harp sounds using only a finger

suzuki electronic omnichord
MIDI out plug for a more custom sound production



project info:


name: Omnichord OM-108

company: Suzuki Music