Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

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Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by LoboLives » Sun Mar 27, 2016 6:32 pm

I recently spent a lot of money on a Prophet 6 and love it to pieces. It's a fantastic synth.

I'm always been partial to the Prophet 10 mostly because I love the idea of a sequencer going with one patch while doing a lead on the second keyboard with another patch. I'm a huge John Carpenter fan and the mainstay for his scores was always a Prophet 10 after he added it to the mix on Halloween 2.

I was really on the fence about getting a restored Prophet 10 but it seemed they would almost never show up on Ebay or Reverb and when one did it was $10k-$20. Is that really what these go for now?

What I noticed on the newer DSI synths is that it's missing a lot of features their older models had. For instance the old Poly Sequencers had a "Transpose" button that when latched on you could transpose on the fly. The Prophet 6 is the only Prophet with a step sequencer from DSI and in order to transpose on the fly you have to hold down the record button so you can't do it on the fly with one hand. Could they have not added a "Transpose" button on this one? It seems like a bit of an oversight. I spoke with DSI about this and they said they had no plans of adding such a feature and no really plans of ever doing a double keyboard Prophet again.

When the OB-6 was announced I thought for sure this would have been corrected...especially with Tom Oberheim's involvement but to my shock not only was this feature not added the OB-6 offers less synthesis than the older OBX and OBX-a. It can't do splits, it can't do layers, it can't pitch shift individual oscillators and if even has less voices than the older models.

It seems kind of shocking that equipment that is decades old somehow has more features than gear coming out now. Should I still seek out vintage gear like OBX-6 or Prophet 10 for these reasons or should I just work with these limitations and focus on modern gear despite having less features because it seems that most of the restored synths on Ebay are just a grand or so more than the newer models (I paid about $4k for my Prophet 6 because the dollar is terrible right now so the exchange rate kills us) so I'm wonder if I should even bother with newer synths?

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by Alex E » Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:18 am

>The Prophet 6 is the only Prophet with a step sequencer from DSI

Prophet 08 had one. :) In fact, I think the P12 was the first DSI synth to not have one.

>It seems kind of shocking that equipment that is decades old somehow has more features than gear coming out now.

Yeah, those synths without MIDI are sure fun to get going in the studio, huh? :lol:
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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by LoboLives » Mon Mar 28, 2016 11:47 am

Alex E wrote:>The Prophet 6 is the only Prophet with a step sequencer from DSI

Prophet 08 had one. :) In fact, I think the P12 was the first DSI synth to not have one.

>It seems kind of shocking that equipment that is decades old somehow has more features than gear coming out now.

Yeah, those synths without MIDI are sure fun to get going in the studio, huh? :lol:
That is true the P08 had one but it was gated and you couldn't transpose it. It was pretty useless actually.

I'm pretty sure the Prophet 10 had Midi and even if the older synths didn't have it initially you could modify them with Midi.

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by Ashe37 » Mon Mar 28, 2016 12:03 pm

LoboLives wrote:
Alex E wrote:>The Prophet 6 is the only Prophet with a step sequencer from DSI

Prophet 08 had one. :) In fact, I think the P12 was the first DSI synth to not have one.

>It seems kind of shocking that equipment that is decades old somehow has more features than gear coming out now.

Yeah, those synths without MIDI are sure fun to get going in the studio, huh? :lol:
That is true the P08 had one but it was gated and you couldn't transpose it. It was pretty useless actually.

I'm pretty sure the Prophet 10 had Midi and even if the older synths didn't have it initially you could modify them with Midi.
No, it didn't. There was a midi mod for it, but it didn't have MIDI. It was made three years before MIDI was available in anything.

As for your earlier question, yes, that is really what they go for now.

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by Stab Frenzy » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:02 am

Hey nobody's twisting your arm and making you use new synths, if you'd rather use a P10 then go for it, you don't need the permission of a bunch of avatars on an Internet forum. There's probably no good reason at all to use new synths, everyone's just been brainwashed. ;)

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by tim gueguen » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:05 am

A Prophet 10 sold for eight thousand US dollars in 1982, which is equivalent to almost twenty thousand dollars in 2016. So of course it would have more features. :D

I have no idea what the cost per voice of something like the current Prophet 6 would be. But presumably adding a couple of voices would increase it several hundred dollars. And DSI and other makers are basing their designs on what else is available in the current market. For example they presumably assume you'll use the sequencer in something like Cubase if you want a more sophisticated sequencer than what they put onboard. And I would guess developing something like a 21st Century equivalent of the old Sequential Circuits Polysequencer would add quite a bit to the cost, and require hiring additional personnel to develop it.
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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by meatballfulton » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:33 am

They didn't make a lot of Prophet 10s, those still around are now over 30 years old and in high demand. Guess you're not the only person who wants one.
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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by synthparts » Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:02 am

MIDI together 2 Prophet-600s w/gligli updates will get you in the ballpark and a lot cheaper...
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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by LoboLives » Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:29 am

I mean I'm always on the hunt for them but does anyone else feel that a lot of the older gear sort of had more features?

I just noticed when I speak to DSI about this they don't really give definitive answers as to why they weren't able to add new features. I don't think it's even a cost issue because if a Sub 37 can have a sequencer that's pretty advanced at a lower cost...and if a Prophet 8 has more synthesis than a Prophet 6 or OB6 why is it cheaper..I mean it just seems like the reverse in common sense.

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by LoboLives » Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 am

synthparts wrote:MIDI together 2 Prophet-600s w/gligli updates will get you in the ballpark and a lot cheaper...
Haven't heard much of the Prophet 600s. Heard they don't sound similar at all.

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by meatballfulton » Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 pm

LoboLives wrote:I mean I'm always on the hunt for them but does anyone else feel that a lot of the older gear sort of had more features?
Different features...the Prophet 10 was pre-MIDI, no velocity, no aftertouch. Yes, some things found on vintage synths are uncommon now but 30 years ago we would have killed for features found on modern synths like tempo synched audio rate LFOs, programmable arpeggiators, XY pads, being able to play with two hands and not run out of notes ;)
LoboLives wrote:I just noticed when I speak to DSI about this they don't really give definitive answers as to why they weren't able to add new features. I don't think it's even a cost issue because if a Sub 37 can have a sequencer that's pretty advanced at a lower cost...and if a Prophet 8 has more synthesis than a Prophet 6 or OB6 why is it cheaper...I mean it just seems like the reverse in common sense.
Anything that is digital is cheaper to implement and allows for adding features after the initial release. Analog hardware is fixed in stone, want to change features and it's back to the factory for modifications. The P08 is heavily digital, the signal path is what is analog. All the modulators including the sequencer are digital. How much of the Prophet 6 is digital I can't say.

The P6 has VCOs rather than DCOs, I personally don't care but some people care an awful lot and are willing to pay for it I guess. The filters are discrete rather than the Curtis chips used in the P08 (and Evolver, Mopho, Tetra, etc.). These are the things that cost money. Personally, the only thing I wish the P08 had from the P6 is the HPF. Otherwise I'd be perfectly happy to pocket the extra $1000, but that's just me.

The P08/Mopho/Tetra sequencer is a bit strange. As you wrote, it is gated. I was not aware it won't transpose. On the Evolver, the sequencer is the same but it will free run and it will transpose. I think DSI saw it being of more use as a modulator than for playing pitches. It is a polysynth after all, where the Evolver started as a monosynth. The P6 sequencer allows polyphonic steps but is no longer a modulator. You probably know it can't be transposed either! Meanwhile the P12, which many see as the successor to Evolver, has no sequencer at all.

Pretty confusing considering that the Evolver provided a four track knobby step sequencer back when no other synth had such a thing and now that knobby sequencers are all the rage DSI has abandoned them. The Evolver is even a modulation sequencer for external MIDI hardware, with tracks assignable to CC#1 (mod wheel), #2 (breath), #4 (foot pedal) and aftertouch. That crazy Dave Smith 8-)

Disclaimer: I own an Evolver, to me the P08 is just an Evolver stripped of features.
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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by Ashe37 » Tue Mar 29, 2016 3:20 pm

LoboLives wrote:I mean I'm always on the hunt for them but does anyone else feel that a lot of the older gear sort of had more features?

I just noticed when I speak to DSI about this they don't really give definitive answers as to why they weren't able to add new features. I don't think it's even a cost issue because if a Sub 37 can have a sequencer that's pretty advanced at a lower cost...and if a Prophet 8 has more synthesis than a Prophet 6 or OB6 why is it cheaper..I mean it just seems like the reverse in common sense.
Because the Prophet 8 uses a synth on a chip, and the Prophet 6 and OB6 use VCOs?

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by LoboLives » Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:05 pm

That makes sense in terms of the DCO and VC0s.

Again the Sequencer CAN transpose on the P6 but you have to hold down RECORD to do it. So it's a tad annoying.

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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by synthparts » Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:51 am

LoboLives wrote:
synthparts wrote:MIDI together 2 Prophet-600s w/gligli updates will get you in the ballpark and a lot cheaper...
Haven't heard much of the Prophet 600s. Heard they don't sound similar at all.
Well I've had both synths for years and they are very similar. They both use the same VCOs and with the extra features of the GliGli upgrade like the individual VCO level controls with overdrive and the faster EGs they're even closer to the P-5. So much so I sold my Rev 3 P-5...
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Re: Still lusting for a Prophet 10 and a trend I noticed...

Post by LoboLives » Wed Mar 30, 2016 10:47 am

synthparts wrote:
LoboLives wrote:
synthparts wrote:MIDI together 2 Prophet-600s w/gligli updates will get you in the ballpark and a lot cheaper...
Haven't heard much of the Prophet 600s. Heard they don't sound similar at all.
Well I've had both synths for years and they are very similar. They both use the same VCOs and with the extra features of the GliGli upgrade like the individual VCO level controls with overdrive and the faster EGs they're even closer to the P-5. So much so I sold my Rev 3 P-5...
Does the sequencer have the option to transpose on the fly?

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