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Dave Smith Instruments Prophet '08 Module 8-voice Analog Synthesizer Reviews

4.5 stars based on 8 customer reviews
  • from Denton, TX September 28, 2016Music Background:
    pro musican

    Lush

    I have several analog synths, including Elektron's A4. I debated getting the Moog D but for production purposes I realized I needed an analog polysynth (I have several digital polys). I never could quite play the A4 like a regular synth. It's too tempting in its design to use the sequencer and I thought the pad sounds were a bit thin even when designing my own. Long story short, the Prophet 8 is incredible. Plugged it in last night and played for about an hour with pads and keys using the MophoK as a controller. I was truly blown away by the sound of this thing. It's incredibly rich, warm, and lush. I was already familiar with the setup (it's basically the same as the MophoK) so there was no learning curve. I felt like I was starring in a 80s sci-fi flick (in a good way). I can't wait to deep dive into this thing and make all original sounds. You will not be disappointed.

  • from United States November 25, 2012

    Analog Polyphony Bliss!!

    The Prophet 08 is a wonderful synthesizer with authentic raw analog sound plus 8-voice polyphony! I love it!

  • from October 27, 2016

    Outstanding

    The Prophet 8 is an evolved Prophet 5 with the power of a Jupiter 8. It's pure analog, has 8 voices, can be split, stacked, unison (unison stacked is awesome), and has an arpeggiator. It has 4 LFOs, a powerful matrix editor, and even a 3rd envelope.

    While it's not as organic and acoustical as a $5,000 vintage Oberheim, it's well beyond a Roland SuperJX. It's organic and prophet-like with thick tones. It's pure analog power packed into such a small package that doesn't feel small at all to use. The layout is beautiful and it's intuitive to use. Hats off to Dave Smith for making one of the best synth modules on the market today.

  • from van nuys August 10, 2015

    Great Synth

    Amazing sounds and a good amount of cash for one but I love it. Slight issue with power switch came bent and crooked. Besides that its mounted in my rack and I can't live without it now! I can send anyone pictures of the damage if you email me about it

  • from Houston, TX May 14, 2013Music Background:
    Freelance Hip hop and Urban electronic Beats producer

    My First Analog Poly! :-)

    It is awesome. I previously had an all digital palette prior to purchasing one. I almost got a Virus TI2 desktop before making the smarter decision to fill my palette deficit first.

    This is no hype but you can almost touch the sound. Real texture, tons of modulation, synced LFOs, accepts MIDI CCs from DAW modulation, BIG leads and Pads. Not number one for bass though, but I got plenty of tools for that.

    Thanks for the Candy Paul Rowan :-)

  • from Brooklyn, NY December 2, 2014Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Sound Designer, Broadcast, Hobbyist

    Compliments Any Production Studio

    This was a great addition to my studio. It is my first analog synth with digital overlays. Lovely pads and leads. Great plug in support. Loads of knobs to tweak. The build of the knobs could be better. Dave Smith has good support for their products. The sound engine is where it is at. Great for sound design, music production, or any situation that calls for polyphonic synthesis.

  • from Madison, WI April 9, 2008Music Background:
    Pro Musician, I make electronic music in the Industrial/Electro/IDM genres

    pretty cool

    pros:
    8 polyphony on an analog synth. tons of fun unison stuff to mess with. you can go mono and get acid out of this thing too, with a bit of patience. I love that you can make it reset any given patch to a basic sawtooth setting for building your own from scratch. gated sequencer w/ TONS of assignable destinations means a very robust sonic palette to work with. the 3rd (assignable) env leaves you with plenty of ways to get creative. obviously this is lacking many of the fun features and wavetable sounds of the PEK, but in return you get an analog signal path and a slightly different sound in the filter overall (and LOTS of oscillators). modulation options everywhere! awesome! being able to layer patches means alot of flexibility, too. The other review here complaining about the LFO is misleading. The reason the LFO speed slows down is because it moves from the maximum free lfo speed to quantized increments for BPM syncing purposes. I don't find this to be a problem in a live setting at all. I've also had zero problems w/ the OS. oh, did we mention yet that this is a $1500 analog poly? there's not really any competition in this price range out here that isn't a VA. Get a polysix,juno,p600 if you want, but you will not get 1/10th of the sounds this can make.

    cons:
    no monophonic output, i.e., plugging into L out will not sum L+R (this is probably not a biggy for most). no audio input. this is a bummer. i might get chided for this, but doesn't do deep bassline stuff particularly well, imo. this might be a limitation of the curtis chip, or just a unique character trait in exchange for that sizzly metallic sort of sound, but trust me, buy this thing if you're looking for polyphony for leads and awesome pads primarily. you can get great bass sounds, but i'm just saying, don't buy this particularly for that function in your studio. now admittedly this is coming from someone who's owned a voyager/ms20/sh-09, and those are pretty much bass machines, but with all that said, you definitely can make do with proper programming and maybe some compression. don't let the presets fool you, as they are primarily very "sheen-y" often utilitizing all voices in mega-detune unison mode w/ cutoff all the way open, so you get alot of same-y UBERBUZZ sounds. there's a few really good examples of the capabilities of this thing, but overall they can be a bit underwhelming. give it a chance though, and for the love of dave, PROGRAM SOMETHING YOURSELF before passing judgement! at first i was really disappointed, hoping this would be the end-all be-all, but i think w/ some time it will grow on me quite a bit because of it's unique-yet-flexible sound palette. it will produce "analog sounds of the 80s" very well, and w/ a little delay can be absolutely enchanting. you can coax Boards of Canada style pads with Osc slop and modulation. it's scary cool for leads and arpeggios, too. add delay! finally, i really wish DSI would embrace something to indicate the position of at least a few of the knobs w/o having to check the LCD screen. it's not really a big deal, but gets tedious. i suppose that's why you get the patch editor! small price to pay for lot of modulation options, too.

    to summarize: this thing rules. it will be a great complement to studios with other analog gear in them. partners GREAT w/ moog stuff. i'm getting a Future Retro XS and Revolution to partner with it, and think this will be an optimal setup. it has a few qualities to it that make it better for some applications than others, but this can be said about every good synth. if you are looking for polyphony and VAs don't cut it for you, get this! i think it rivals the Virus TI very well. Prophet 5 meets the evolver line.

  • from Denver March 30, 2008Music Background:
    Managed keyboard only music store, over 2000 gigs, producer, programmer

    Prophet 08 Module

    Not bad. The sounds are pretty decent for a digital overlay on the analog controls. There are many flaws on this unit. The OS is very weak and fails to take any notice of people who will be using this unit live. The LFO time is deadly bad traveling from slow to fast to slow again. When you get on a Prophet put the LFO on your filter and keep turning clockwise - you will immediately notice problems. This same approach is also present in the handling of the PWM (not cool).

    The patches leave very much to be desired (you better know synthesis / theory to get this dialed in correct).

    In assigning MIDI controllers to the unit it appears that the value range is far beyond the 0-127 we are used to (go ahead and try to throw a basic CC on the filter frequency).

    Control Change in instructions is incorrect and incomplete, this list goes on and on.

    Over all it sounds good, slightly better than digital. The construction is medium, and this is a great alternative to buying a Nord 3 Rack used on Ebay.

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