My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...?

A forum for discussing the pros & cons of buying a particular synth and for advice on buying synthesizers.
themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...?

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 3:10 pm

Ok so, I've bought and sold a bunch of stuff over the past few months trying to find just what I wanted (Juno 1, P800, Matrix 6r, CZ101) and have ended up with an AKai AX-60 for less than $300 which I'm very happy with but it's limited... I also have a Matrix 6 keyboard that got smashed up in shipping that I'm trying to resolve but I only paid $200 for that.

In the meantime I started a new band. I'm playing the Fender Bass VI and synth in a three-piece which is cool but when I play in the high register on the VI I still need to cover low end... so Taurus/ Bass pedals become a obvious option besides adding an actual bass player... We're doing a Indie-rock sorta thing... it's kinda sounding like Fugazi meets 80s Rush for better or for worse ;)

So here's my dilemma... I got a set of Studiologic MP113 pedals to use with the AX-60... but the single oscillator sound of the Akai just doesn't cut it for single note bass stuff... if the AX had chord memory I might be ok but alas it is a very limited synth. We play live so carting around a bunch of synths isn't an option... but at rehearsal I will prolly use my guitar player's Alpha Juno 1 for bass pedals until I figure out what to do.

Now, I love the Curtis/Oberheim sound and have thought about saving up for an SEM for bass synth but that seems sorta overkill for bass synth only... So I thought about the Mopho... but I kinda hate the interface and encoders... But the sub oscillators and feedback seem like they would be great for my needs... and cheap. I have an EX-800 that needs repairing and that may tide me over too but I dunno...

BUT... I can't stop thinking about how great a Prophet '08 would be for me. Then I can just use the one synth for everything and get rid of the AX-60 and all the other synths I have kicking around that I don't need. It's smaller than my AX even and I can cart it to gigs easily and it's got a ton of feature for me to explore in the band or with my solo stuff... And it have that Curtis sound! But alas it's WAY out of my price range... unless I save for a few months and sell the Akai, Matrix and others I have.

Is the P'08 worth saving for? Is it cool as an only synth if I am not a full-time keyboard player and more of a dabbler? Should I still just get a Mopho now to use with the MP113 and still save for the P08?

User avatar
Doooooooom
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 46
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 9:02 pm
Gear: Microkorg, Mopho Keyboard, Korg SP-300 piano, Roland KC-110 amp, Korg Pandora.
Location: UK

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by Doooooooom » Wed May 26, 2010 3:33 pm

It might be hard to explain to band mates why you bought a synth that only plays one note at a time. You kind of need to have a lot of manual maybe classical skill to make people realise what a monosynth can do. Then again if you saved up and bought a Prophet '08 are you going to use that to the limit of what it can do? For single line leads and bases the Mopho is actually a better instrument. If you want electric piano type, synth strings and pads as well then you need the Prophet.

themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 4:01 pm

Well,

I'm kinda like the indie/post-rock Geddy Lee... when I play the keys and not bass I tend to do pads and synthy block chords but when I play high on the bass I need a good mono bass synth for the pedals...

That's the dilemma... I really need both ;)

User avatar
Doooooooom
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 46
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 9:02 pm
Gear: Microkorg, Mopho Keyboard, Korg SP-300 piano, Roland KC-110 amp, Korg Pandora.
Location: UK

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by Doooooooom » Wed May 26, 2010 4:58 pm

The thing is personally if I had managed to save up enough to buy a Prophet '08 I probably wouldn't even get one. If I'd got to that point I would be thinking about saving up even more for something really beyond my reach like a Memotron. The Prophet '08 is a good looking and great sounding synth, the only thing is I haven't read too many people or reviewers being absolutely blown away by it, and if I was going to spend that sort of money I'd want the absolute king of instruments. Original Prophet users seemed dissapointed it doesn't sound exactly like a Prophet 5. I would maybe wait to see what Dave Smith instruments next keyboard is or something. Perhaps some Prophet '08 users here know better.

themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 5:47 pm

Well on paper the P'08 seems more OB than P5... and from the demos I've heard it sound this way too... obvious shortcomings in sound aside.

But there are some very attractive things about it from the POV of a non-keyboard player that will be using the way I do. It seems it can do most of the stuff an OB-X can do, It has the "curtis" sound and is very small for a 61-note keyboard... and a new keyboard with a warranty seems like a good thing for the gigging/touring musician.

themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 5:58 pm

Also, any word if we will get a pot upgrade for the Mopho? I kinda feel like if the Filt/res/ADR were pots I would have gotten it already.

Just got an e-mail from DSI... they said this won't be happening anytime soon but he confirms that the OS will be upgraded so the encoders will sweep on a single turn.

COOL!

Tetr4 is looking more and more like the thing I want though...

User avatar
pflosi
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 3620
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2007 6:14 pm
Gear: more than 150 characters...
Location: zürich
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by pflosi » Wed May 26, 2010 6:19 pm

maybe a tetra + midikeyboard / midisequencer / midipedals would do the trick...?

themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 6:28 pm

pflosi wrote:maybe a tetra + midikeyboard / midisequencer / midipedals would do the trick...?
I think I could just use it with my AX-60 and MP113s for a while until I save for something "bigger"

the fact that it has pots for Filt/Res makes are huge difference for me.

Although I could potentially sell two things and get a Mopho next week if I needed. ;)

nvbrkr
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 812
Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 8:14 pm
Gear: An electric piano and analog synths.
Location: Helsinki, Finland

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by nvbrkr » Wed May 26, 2010 6:51 pm

Doooooooom wrote: If I'd got to that point I would be thinking about saving up even more for something really beyond my reach like a Memotron.
Image

If I had the money for a P08, I'd get that SEM instead and maybe keep the AX. Just my take on it.

By the way, it should be relatively easy to find a used P08s - the prices aren't bad either.

themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 8:25 pm

nvbrkr wrote: If I had the money for a P08, I'd get that SEM instead and maybe keep the AX. Just my take on it.
Except "the money" for an SEM is half "the money" for a P08.

somebody here is selling a P08 for $1500... not bad. but After the PE upgrade I'm looking at $1800.

I can get a new P08 PE for $1999 shipped at Rainbow.

User avatar
redchapterjubilee
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 846
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 3:59 pm
Location: Arden, NC
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by redchapterjubilee » Wed May 26, 2010 10:36 pm

I'd buy the Mopho to use specifically with the MIDI bass pedals and keep the AX60 for chording or your bandmate's Alpha Juno (it is much more portable than the AX60!). You can find a good used Mopho for less than $300. It is burly and the encoders/matrix programming is not that big of a deal.
http://facebook.com/greatunwashedluminaries
ANALOG SYNTHESIZERS + EFFECTS + COMPUTERS

themilford
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 820
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:19 am
Real name: David
Gear: Oberheim: OB-8, DSX, DMX, DXa, Yamaha CS-15, Akai AX-60, S612, Moog Taurus 3, Alesis MMT-8, HR-16, Fender Bass IV, Rickenbacker 620/6, Crumar Trilogy
Band: Season Finale
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Contact:

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by themilford » Wed May 26, 2010 10:59 pm

redchapterjubilee wrote:I'd buy the Mopho to use specifically with the MIDI bass pedals and keep the AX60 for chording or your bandmate's Alpha Juno (it is much more portable than the AX60!). You can find a good used Mopho for less than $300. It is burly and the encoders/matrix programming is not that big of a deal.
I think this will be the most efficient, economical and swift solution...

But man I have a hard-on for the Tetr4 ;)

But once I get a P08 or something it will be overkill.

The Mopho and P08 would make a great match in the long-run... and I can live with the AX-60 (or the Alpha) for a while.
Last edited by themilford on Thu May 27, 2010 3:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

miket156
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 88
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2004 7:42 pm
Location: PA

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by miket156 » Thu May 27, 2010 2:25 am

Original Prophet users seemed dissapointed it doesn't sound exactly like a Prophet
I don't think that is entirely true. I own a Prophet 5, bought it brand new in 1980. It still works and sounds great. I think many of us Prophet 5 owners were hoping for a new Prophet that had the character of the original with the advantage of modern capabilities. But Dave Smith targeted an 8 voice synth for $2000 USD when he designed the new Prophet and when you design a product based on a target price, compromises have to be made.

The best example are the encoders on the original Prophet 08. Less expensive than pots. But enough players asked for pots that he came out with an upgrade for the first P08's and started shipping the new ones with pots. More money, the parts are more expensive so it has to be.

The disappointment with the P08 for me is the filter. It doesn't quite have the balls as the filter on my Prophet 5 has. Now filter sweeps will not be the only thing you will ever do with a synth. But the filter on the original P5 reached into sonic territory that the P08 falls short of achieving. I think the P08 is still a great synth, but because of the cost of building it today, I think the build quality isn't quite up to snuff either. Now if Dave Smith were to build a better quality synth and charge 5 or 6 grand for it, I wonder how many actual buyers he would have. 2k seems to be the magic number for most instrument sales these days. I paid $3200 USD for my Prophet 5 in 1980. Do the math, a synth that sells for 2K in 2010 is just not going to have the build quality a $3200 synth in 1980 had at an affordable price for musicians.

I emailed Dave Smith and expressed my feelings about the filter and his staff told me he read the email. I don't want to insult the man, he's right up there with Bob Moog in terms of what he has done for us synth players in my opinion. There are reasons he used the components he did when he built it, so I really don't know the answer. If I had the money, I would probably have the P08 pot edition and use it for the capabilities it does have. Its not a perfect world.

Mike T.

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: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu May 27, 2010 4:13 am

themilford wrote:I got a set of Studiologic MP113 pedals to use with the AX-60... but the single oscillator sound of the Akai just doesn't cut it for single note bass stuff... if the AX had chord memory I might be ok but alas it is a very limited synth.
:?

I think the AX-60 is pretty good for bass actually, maybe it's limited but bass sounds are the ones that use the least in terms of modulation etc. One osc is fine for bass sounds, you don't have to deal with phase cancellation that way. If you want a bit more movement try a square wave with PWM. If you want it even bigger and beefier use unison mode.

I don't think the issue here is going to be solved by spending money, I think you can do it just by programming the synth better.

nvbrkr
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 812
Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 8:14 pm
Gear: An electric piano and analog synths.
Location: Helsinki, Finland

Re: My dilemma: Should I get a Mopho or save for a P08 or...

Post by nvbrkr » Thu May 27, 2010 6:36 am

themilford wrote:
nvbrkr wrote: If I had the money for a P08, I'd get that SEM instead and maybe keep the AX. Just my take on it.
Except "the money" for an SEM is half "the money" for a P08.
Exactly!

Post Reply