Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

A forum for comparing two or more synths against each other. Also known as "versus" threads.
alexsumner1
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 5
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:07 pm

Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by alexsumner1 » Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:33 pm

Hello everyone! =]
Woo first post...

I feel really baffled at the moment. I cannot decide whether to go towards a complete analog signal path, or go to the analog modelling synthesizer side. The two synths that I am deciding on are the Access Virus or the Prophet 08. I like both of them, i like the phat sounds of the Prophet and that it is good synth for first time analog players (well, I am not new to synthesis, but the triton's loaded with presets and i've had enough of menu diving), but its slightly more expensive, I also like the idea of it being completely analog, a pretty rare sight these days with all these sample based and software synthesizers. I've never actually used an analog synthesizer, only the Pro-53 softsynth from native instruments, which, IMO doesnt really have the personality of hardware if you know what i mean. Then again, I like the Virus TI, it looks nice, and the position of the mod and pitch wheel seem more appropriate. However, from what i've seen, it sounds digital, thin and dark. It looks more complex, too, the buttons and knobs are all shoved in one corner, and, i can bet theyres gonna be some menu diving somewhere along the lines. Then again, I like the basslines, the Total Integration, the modulation routing and the HyperSaw feature of the Virus. I am looking for a more hands on synthesizer, one that has plenty of dials and switches, not a load of menus and buttons, like my Triton Rack. Something that sounds gritty, phat, and all in all, reliable.

Please help, theyres a war being waged inside my head, between analog and digital synths.

As well as that, any chance you can give me some guidance on how to get some neat lead sounds out of my Triton Rack?
Thankyou soo much.
Alex Sumner, from the UK. :D :D :D

User avatar
Z
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 3492
Joined: Wed May 09, 2007 3:08 am
Gear: Bubble wrap, Styrofoam, boxes, packing tape
Location: Docking Bay 94 (Dallas, TX)
Contact:

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Z » Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:59 pm

This time last year, I was very excited to hear about the new Prophet. When my local Guitar Center finally got one in, I was there to help them un box it. I messed around with it for about 30-45 minutes and I just wasn't impressed. All the "thick" sounds were all layered, reducing the polyphony to 4! The P'08 is cool, but in my opinion, not $2K cool. A few months ago I scored a P'08 rack at a good price, but re-sold it a couple weeks later. I still wasn't impressed.

I never spent much time with the Access products. A few months ago I had the opprotunity to pick up a TI desktop at a steal of a price. It does analog emulations quite well, but I like its digital sounds the best. I made a quick demo after the first couple of days, but I haven't had a chance to find a permanent place to put it in my studio (it's in the process of re-design). I'll stick it on my Synthmusician.com page here in a bit.

EDIT: I just posted the mp3 demo, you can go to www.synthmusician.com/z. Before this site was updated, there used to be a "www" button below next to the "profile" and "PM" buttons. Anyone know what happened?

alexsumner1
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 5
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:07 pm

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by alexsumner1 » Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:09 pm

Hmm, well, thats a good point in the right direction :D , a high amount of polyphony would be ideal in my situation. It is also good that, even though its emulation, there are still some good analog sounds, so I suppose its best of both worlds having the digital sounds too. Makes that well worth the money. Yep, im very close to making my decision. I will look at those mp3's on the website. Thankyou Z.

Alex Sumner

User avatar
Pilot352
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 260
Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 9:39 pm
Location: Darien, Il.

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Pilot352 » Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:57 pm

Z wrote:All the "thick" sounds were all layered, reducing the polyphony to 4! The P'08 is cool, but in my opinion, not $2K cool.
Although your statement is subjective, I tend to disagree. The P'08 has two oscillators per voice (16) and can be extremely phat in 8 poly mode. You were making an observation based on listening to the factory presets which many here have commented are very weak. Also, analog circuitry is expensive and to get the phat sound you talk about with more polyphony, you need more oscillators. DSI allows chaining of multiple p'08 to get the more polyphony. I know, thats twice the $2K price tag but you CAN get more polyphony. Getting the P'08 really gets you a REAL analog sound vs a computer generated sound from the TI. Although I don't own a TI, I've played one. They are very nice synths and they sound real good. But, if you want the real analog sound... the P'08 is the way to go.
alexsumner1 wrote:As well as that, any chance you can give me some guidance on how to get some neat lead sounds out of my Triton Rack?
As you can see in my signature, I own a P'08 and a Triton Rack. I would be please to answer any questions you have about either.

-Pilot
Analog: Mono/Poly, Prophet '08, Juno 106
Digital: Kurzweil SP88, Yamaha DX11, Kawai K4, MS2K, AN1x
Modules: Triton (loaded), Motif ES, MS2KR, E-Mu Proteus 2K, TR626 DM, Roland U220
New Addition: Fender Rhodes 73 Mark I
So much gear... So little time!!!

User avatar
Joey
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 1885
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 10:13 pm
Gear: 18u Eurorack, Octatrack, Pro2
Band: BLUSH_RESPONSE
Location: Berlin
Contact:

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Joey » Thu Aug 14, 2008 4:48 am

as an owner of both, I can say go with the virus

the prophet does not cover enough ground to be the main synth in a setup

it has a GREAT sound, but its a bit limited

the virus covers A LOT of sonic ground, and sounds great doing it

it can sound warm, fat, thick, thin, aggressive, smooth, creamy, however you like, you just really have to know how to get to its sweet spots

the learning curve is not steep at all, you can make most sounds from the front panel, with only a bit of menu diving if you want to get into the more complex synthesis such as wavetable, etc...

definitely go with the virus, all the common complaints about it being too harsh or whatever are nonsense, with clever programming you can eliminate all of that
No one cares, no one sympathizes,
so you just stay home and play synthesizers.

http://wearereplicants.com

User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9723
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Gear: Eurorack, RYTM, Ultranova, many FX
Location: monster island*
Contact:

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Aug 14, 2008 5:17 am

What you need to do is go to a shop that has both the Virus and the Prophet, play around on them both for a while, then buy the one you like the most.

It's the only way you can do it, comparing features means nothing, polyphony means nothing, what you read on the internet about what they sound like/how easy to use they are means nothing.

To decide which one is best for YOU, YOU have to play them.

User avatar
crystalmsc
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 2860
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 7:15 am
Gear: uWaveXT,uQ,Pulse+;Ion;MiniBrt
Karma,Mntrb,Volcas,01R;Venom
NordModular,L2X;Evolver;JP8080
MKS70,JD990,D50,MC909,MC80ex
Microcon2;TG77,RS7k,AN200,AN1x
Band: Crystaline
Location: Synth Garden
Contact:

Post by crystalmsc » Thu Aug 14, 2008 9:07 am

alexsumner1 wrote:neat lead sounds out of my Triton Rack?
I really like the lead sound of the moss card in my Karma, it has that harsh quality that I adore. Which actually almost half of a Z1 that sometime are being sold for ridiculously cheap. You can pull many type of lead that you like, from analog emulation, physical modelling or hybrid (even layered with the HI engine). It sounds a bit arp-ish to me, but I really like some moog type lead out of it. There's even a free lead bank from Korg to get you started. May be it will keep you busy for a while for a small bucks and focusing more on the real analog later :idea:
Kaossilatron - Voicillator
http://crystaline.bandcamp.com
Station: Ableton Live 10 Suite, Obscurium, Push 2, Ultranova, MS-20m, Wavedrums

alexsumner1
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 5
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:07 pm

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by alexsumner1 » Thu Aug 14, 2008 10:26 am

What you need to do is go to a shop that has both the Virus and the Prophet, play around on them both for a while, then buy the one you like the most.
Hmm, i dont think there are any shops near where i live that sell synths, theres Music90 at wigan just up the road, but they only sell casio and yamaha keyboards, so i cant really test them out. Ive seen youtube videos, and Keybdwizrd has covered a few sounds of the prophet and the virus. I love the sound of the prophet, but, as I am only 16, its gonna be hard to save up that much, so christmas is gonna be my best bet. My mum trusts a website called http://www.absolute.ms/ which is a good site, and has some good deals, but unfortunately, they only do the virus, nothing from DSI anywhere.
They are very nice synths and they sound real good. But, if you want the real analog sound... the P'08 is the way to go.
Yeah, I aggree there, although I do want the traditional analog sounds, as I need something that has good bassline and great lead sounds, however, I need a synth that covers more ground like the Virus. Does the P08 have any sorta digital-like sounds, like pianos, or dynamic pads?

I honestly wish I could try one out, be it P08 or Virus.

Oh, and are the Virus sounds all multisamples or are they from digitally recreated oscilators, and where would I be able to get a MOSS board for my Triton from? It mentions one of these in the manual.

PS, what are the keys like on the P08 and the Virus? Are they springy and light, or more piano-ish, like harder?

Thankyou for all this, I need this help, but im swaying closer to the Virus at the moment, as the idea of having both analog and digital sounds seems ideal, but, it needs to have good lead and bass. :wink: :wink: :wink:

User avatar
Pilot352
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 260
Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 9:39 pm
Location: Darien, Il.

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Pilot352 » Thu Aug 14, 2008 11:32 am

alexsumner1 wrote:...Does the P08 have any sorta digital-like sounds, like pianos, or dynamic pads?...
No, the P'08 is an analog synth. You need a wave table synth to do Piano sounds. Your Triton Rack does that type of sound quite nicely. I agree with others; if you are looking for that type of sound then go with the TI. The P'08 is purely an subtractive analog synth and focuses on a narrow range of sound possibilities. It's strength, if you will, is the analog synth type sounds only. It's basically a modernized version of the prophet 5 by SCI (designed by the same guy).

If you are on a budget, you may want to consider a used Yamaha AN1X which is a real good VA synth. Or, you may consider adding a MOSS board to your T-Rack. The MOSS board sounds awesome. They can be had for about $400.00 on ebay. I wouldn't pay any more then that though. I've seen some up there for $600.00 plus. Absolutely absurd.

The keys on the P'08 are very nice. Their not like a piano at all. They are plastic but have a very sturdy feel to them. Not like some/most digital synths. I can't speak for the TI as I only played it once and it was about a year ago.

I would do some research on synth technology to understand the differences between the type of synths available. Look up "subtractive synthesis" (analog), "Additive synthesis", "Wave table synthesis", "Virtual Analog Synthesis", and "FM Synthesis". All of these (and several others I can't remember) work differently and therefore make a different type of sound.



-Pilot
Analog: Mono/Poly, Prophet '08, Juno 106
Digital: Kurzweil SP88, Yamaha DX11, Kawai K4, MS2K, AN1x
Modules: Triton (loaded), Motif ES, MS2KR, E-Mu Proteus 2K, TR626 DM, Roland U220
New Addition: Fender Rhodes 73 Mark I
So much gear... So little time!!!

User avatar
crystalmsc
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 2860
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 7:15 am
Gear: uWaveXT,uQ,Pulse+;Ion;MiniBrt
Karma,Mntrb,Volcas,01R;Venom
NordModular,L2X;Evolver;JP8080
MKS70,JD990,D50,MC909,MC80ex
Microcon2;TG77,RS7k,AN200,AN1x
Band: Crystaline
Location: Synth Garden
Contact:

Post by crystalmsc » Thu Aug 14, 2008 12:25 pm

alexsumner1 wrote:It mentions one of these in the manual.
in case you haven't notice, it's engine is based from the Z1. You might want to read more about the board and listen to the demos. There's also a nice place about it with great material and demos. Look for those great tips and demos from timo. I luckily got mine for less than 200 bucks from a local deal years ago and very happy about it.
Kaossilatron - Voicillator
http://crystaline.bandcamp.com
Station: Ableton Live 10 Suite, Obscurium, Push 2, Ultranova, MS-20m, Wavedrums

User avatar
Huppo
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 485
Joined: Thu May 19, 2005 2:58 pm
Gear: V-synth, broken Fusion 6HD, HPD10, MP-7, 60+ guitars, etc.
Band: naught
Location: Western Mars
Contact:

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Huppo » Thu Aug 14, 2008 1:07 pm

alexsumner1 wrote: Does the P08 have any sorta digital-like sounds, like pianos, or dynamic pads?
alexsumner1 wrote:Oh, and are the Virus sounds all multisamples or are they from digitally recreated oscilators,
This isn't meant to sound insulting, but it probably does, so I apologize in advance. If you don't already know this info, you're shooting way too high in the synth food chain for your level of understanding to justify the cost of these synths. There's tons of synths that sell for way less than the $1500-$2000 these two units go for and will probably do exactly what you want.
alexsumner1 wrote: PS, what are the keys like on the P08 and the Virus? Are they springy and light, or more piano-ish, like harder?
What you're asking about is 'weighted action.' Springy and light would be considered 'synth action.'
alexsumner1 wrote:Thankyou for all this, I need this help, but im swaying closer to the Virus at the moment, as the idea of having both analog and digital sounds seems ideal
Keep this in mind, then. Digital synths will generally do a passable emulation of analog sounds (unless you're a purist) but analog synths can't do any kind of emulation of purely digital sounds. You can get lead and bass sounds out of darn near anything (you might have to program them in yourself...), but you'll generally get a wider variety of sounds from a similarly priced digital synth if for no other reason than it's cheaper to emulate analog circuitry than to actually create it.
~huppo

Please feel free to add me to your Foes list.

alexsumner1
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 5
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 4:07 pm

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by alexsumner1 » Fri Aug 15, 2008 4:33 pm

Ok, thats some points to the Virus and T-Rack, MOSS for the Triton, and the fact that the Virus can do a pretty good emulation of analog seems ok. The Virus seems to provide more sounds for the money then!

Hmm, ok, all that makes a lot of sense. I will have a look around and find out about the MOSS board. From what I have seen, it sounds pretty good, and it's quite versatile.
I aggree with you there, Huppo, I am not that good with synthesis and the like. I think I need to read up a bit more, and find out about the different types of synthesis. I learn from this kind of advice and look around for something thats a bit easier for me. Dont worry though, no offence taken. =]

Thankyou for all this help. And I will do some reading up before I make any big decisions as yet.

User avatar
nathanscribe
VSE Review Contributor
VSE Review Contributor
Posts: 2889
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:03 pm
Location: The right side of the Pennines
Contact:

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by nathanscribe » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:54 pm

Alex, there used to be a shop called Sound Control here in the UK that was pretty good for demo-ing stuff. However, they went bust recently. The good news is that a number of the stores are still open, as there were a couple of buy-outs - some locations went to Professional Music Technology (http://www.pmtonline.co.uk/) and others have (or will) become Reverb.

I have used, and can recommend, Dolphin (http://www.dolphinmusic.co.uk/) - either check out the shop (though I've not visited their Liverpool branch) or give them a ring - even if something's not listed as being in stock on their website, they can often get it in. Delivery is overnight, so you can have stuff before you lose too much sleep 8)

Also, DV247.com are the cheapest I've seen in the UK for DSI gear. Never used them though.

Hope that helps.

User avatar
OriginalJambo
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 2556
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2006 12:04 am
Gear: Check my sig
Location: Scotland, United Kingdom

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by OriginalJambo » Fri Aug 15, 2008 10:24 pm

Huppo wrote:analog synths can't do any kind of emulation of purely digital sounds.
Hmmm...I dunno. I would say it's possible with the right synth and the right mind.

In my somewhat limited experience utilising complex modulations - especially cross modulation coupled with hard sync - you can get get some pretty "digital" sounds from some more advanced analogue synths. At the very least it's certainly possible to nail convincing FM sounds this way.

Remember that the Prophet 08 is a very flexible synth with its generous modulation matrix and coupled with oscillators that can be as stable in pitch as you like "digital" sounds can be a reality. Your imagination is your only limit really.

Of course there is no doubt that the Virus is as fully-featured as they come, but it the end of the day it's what works for you. Try them both out to be sure.

User avatar
Huppo
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 485
Joined: Thu May 19, 2005 2:58 pm
Gear: V-synth, broken Fusion 6HD, HPD10, MP-7, 60+ guitars, etc.
Band: naught
Location: Western Mars
Contact:

Re: Access Virus TI or Prophet '08

Post by Huppo » Sat Aug 16, 2008 2:28 pm

OriginalJambo wrote:Remember that the Prophet 08 is a very flexible synth with its generous modulation matrix and coupled with oscillators that can be as stable in pitch as you like "digital" sounds can be a reality. Your imagination is your only limit really.
Leave it to you to pointlessly cloud a simple statement meant to unconfuse a newbie.

A Microwave XT, a FIZMO, a V-synth, etc, can all make vast oceans of sound you couldn't recreate with a P'08 no matter how hard you tried or for how long or with whose knowledge and imagination.

Read this statement again, OJ: analog synths can't do any kind of emulation of purely digital sounds.

If you can do it with an analog synth, it's not purely digital, is it? Yes, you can do FM with an analog synth, but then FM isn't exactly purely digital, is it?

Let's use the Virus TI as an example. Can you emulate anything the P'08 can do? Yes. Does it sound exactly like a P'08? No.

Whip up a complex, animated wavetable patch on the Virus. Can you do an emulation of it on the P'08? No.

When I try to help someone, I take into account their level of knowledge and try to play to it. Do you suppose the original poster has the depth and type of knowledge necessary to make your hair-splitting useful at this point? Do you suppose he's well-versed in exactly which digital synths use a specific variety of digital synthesis that you can emulate with an analog synth and which ones do not?

I think your posting in this thread has more to do with passively picking a fight than trying to be helpful and informative.
~huppo

Please feel free to add me to your Foes list.

Post Reply