Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 12 61-key Synthesizer

61-key 12-voice Synthesizer with Four Oscillators, Sub-oscillator, Low- and High-pass Filters, and Analog VCAs Per Voice; Effects; and Arpeggiator
Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 12 61-key Synthesizer image 1
Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 12 61-key Synthesizer image 1
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Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 12 61-key Synthesizer
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Digital Precision on Top of Analog Filters and VCAs

Dave Smith Instruments' Prophet 12 61-key synthesizer sports 12 voices - each featuring four oscillators, a sub-oscillator, resonant low- and highpass filters, and analog VCAs. To command all this sonic firepower, you get enough real-time controls to pilot a space shuttle. The Prophet 12's Character section adds powerful wave-shaping and sound-sculpting opportunities, while its tuned-feedback path, per-voice four-tap stereo delay, robust arpeggiator, bi-timbral operation, and deep modulation mojo let you polish your patches. Dave Smith Instruments' Prophet 12: it's a beast.

Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 12 Polyphonic Synthesizer at a Glance:
  • Mind-blowing sonic firepower
  • Juice your sounds with Character
  • Designed by an synth legend
Mind-blowing sonic firepower

Dave Smith Instruments' Prophet 12 packs stunning firepower. The sonic breadth of this synth's voice architecture is staggering. With 48 oscillators in the engine room (plus 12 sub-oscillators), there's no limit to the damage you can do. And once you've created a patch (or grabbed one of the awesome-sounding presets), you get a universe of deep modulation and effects options to massage it into something no one's ever heard before. In addition to the Character section, the Prophet 12 offers an army of envelopes; LFOs, delays, and an arpeggiator that can all be synced; and much more - along with a boatload of real-time controllers that include two programmable position-and pressure-sensitive touch sliders.

Juice your sounds with Character

The Prophet 12's Character section lets gives you powerful, intuitive wave-shaping and sound-sculpting control. The controls in this section sport proprietary Dave Smith circuitry, as well as colorful names that are quite descriptive. When you twist a knob labelled Drive, Hack, Decimation, Girth, or Air - there's little left to the imagination as to what it'll do to your sound. Prepare to be amazed. And delighted.

Designed by a synth legend

Dave Smith was the design engineer and driving force behind Sequential Circuits, whose first product was the legendary Prophet 5 in 1977 - the first polyphonic synthesizer capable of storing the value of every parameter within its voicing and control systems. This was a watershed technological breakthrough, and the implications were staggering. Think about this: before the Prophet 5, it simply wasn't possible to enter a patch number into a synth and recall sounds you had stored. The Prophet 5 and its successors were hugely successful, finding their way into every top studio and major act's keyboard rig, and onto countless recordings by artists as diverse as Madonna and Weather Report! Impressive, yes - but Dave also had a hand in inventing a little thing called MIDI.

Dave Smith Instruments Prophet 12 Polyphonic Synthesizer Features:
  • 12 voices, each with four oscillators, sub-oscillator, low- and highpass filters, and analog VCAs
  • Character section adds a variety of wave shaping and sound sculpting options
  • Tuned feedback path, a four-tap stereo delay per voice, expanded arpeggiator functionality
  • Deep modulation capabilities, bi-timbral operation
  • Four LFOs and four envelopes per voice
  • LFOs, delay, and arpeggiator can all be synced
  • Grippy pitch and mod wheels; aftertouch
  • Sustain, plus two expression pedal inputs
  • Two programmable position-and pressure-sensitive touch sliders
  • MIDI DIN in, out, and thru; MIDI over USB
Dave Smith Instruments' Prophet 12 is a beast!

Additional Media

Dave Smith Instruments Updates Prophet 12 OS to v1.3

Tech Specs

Sound Engine Type(s) Digitally-controlled Oscillators
Number of Keys 61
Type of Keys Semi-weighted
Other Controllers Pitchbend, Mod Wheel, Aftertouch, 2 x Programmable Touch Sliders
Polyphony 12 Notes
Expansion Poly Chain
Number of Effects 1
Effects Types Delay (4-tap Stereo per Voice)
Arpeggiator Yes
Audio Outputs 4 x 1/4"
MIDI I/O In/Out/Thru
Pedal Inputs 1 x Sustain, 2 x Expression
Power Supply 110V-240V AC (Included)
Height 4.15"
Width 38.4"
Depth 12.8"
Weight 26 lbs.
Manufacturer Part Number DSI-2300

Customer Reviews

Based on 21 reviews
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Someday we'll know

The depths of this synth will be explored for years to come... This synth has not been around long enough to have had its almost endless permutations explored to the limits !I feel it is what Oberheim/Viscount tried to acheive with the VA OB12., unfortunately the software was not quite up to the task (also only analogue simulation) i compare the two regularly when searching for a sound, the power of the Prophet 12 is obvious but i cant help feeling they are somehow similar and are in my ballpark together fir certain sounds.Althoughit's a quality feel I find the keyboard on the P12 to be a bit too "springy" and controlling velocities and aftertouch is a fine line., i also haven't been able to find a graphic of the vel curves available...?? ..that aside once adjusted to this, the performance capabilites with the mod wheels and two ribbons is extensive and expressive..The preset sounds i suppose can only be a starting point to save programming as they miss the mark in every genre., but are within reach of a few tweaks away from whatever you may need or be creating., the organization of these programs doesnt seem to be well thought out though.This synth goes deep and only with time will it unfold its true potential.
Music background: Professional for 30years

Prophet 12 review

For those of you who did not own prophet 12. saying the prophet 12 is not good keyboard. Stop telling lie about prophet 12. I you did not own one, do not even bother to write a review because you do not know what you are talking about. I own this bad boy. There are tons and tons of beautiful sounds. It can range from a simple to a very sophisticated sounds. And yet, there are very beautiful to your ears. It is really depending on you and how you want it to sound. You need to create your own sound. I own many keyboards and performed on stages. The prophet 12 has everything you need. Go get yourself one and try it. I would give it two thumbs up and ten stars.
Music background: Guitarist, keyboardist, drumer, singer, songs writer, and worship leader.

Fresh sound, classic feel.

The new DSI flagship is made for the modern stage and studio - a wonderful hybrid of digital flexibility with analog warmth that will undoubtedly start showing up all over radio very soon.. ..We can't keep rehashing the minimoog guys! There's tons of that - their great - but IMO the P12 looks to the future while nodding to the old. The performance controllers, stacking, splitting, eqs, bitcrushers, and moddable delays (flanger, chorus, ping-pong delay!), 14x14 mod matrix, etc make it worthy as a standalone powerhouse, with almost "workstation" like flexibilty and features. For me, it's got everything great about modern tour kings like the Virus, Nord Lead, and V-Synth, but with the warmth and feel of analog (VCFs, VCAs, etc.) I don't know what these other reviewers heard, but it wasn't even finished yet......compressed mono 360p youtube videos maybe?
Music background: pro musician

10 stars!!

I've owned lots of vintage gear, and had the Prophet'08, too. This bad boy is in a class of its own. Gorgeous, solid built quality, every bit as high quality as the Moog Voyager, and the keyboard just feels like butter. The sounds are the best I've ever heard - organic, yet articulate. Fat, yet fit. Hard to describe, but they make my ears smile in a big way. The UI is perfectly executed - I never really cared for the '08's UI - including a wonderful graphical LCD display in crisp black & white. What can I say, this plus the Voyager, and I'm in synth heaven.
Music background: anything and everything, usually all at once

Best polysynth ever

Don't listen to anyone who has not actually owned one - there are plenty of wanna-be's who watched a YouTube video or otherwise think they know. "Oh, digital oscillators - that must be bad!!" is just one example of moronic comments by these folks. Having owned Moogs, Prophets, Jupiters and Oberheim OBs (yes, I"m *that* old!) as well as Nord Leads, Viruses, Korgs, and Alesises, as well as most every "analog" softsynth made, I think I have some authenticity to my comments. First off, NO synth can do it all. They all sound different. So, if you find one that sounds great to you, then that is the one for you, despite what anyone else thinks. You just might find that you need synth A for some things and synth B for others, and so on - ask any guitarist how many guitars they have, and why. It's because a Strat is not a Les Paul, and vice versa. And an early '60's Strat is different than a late '60's Strat, and so on, and so on. You need one of each :-) The same is true for synths. *Nothing* will take the place of a Moog - it has a patented low-pass filter, and it is absolutely gorgeous. For classic analog lead or bass sounds, nothing will do better than a Moog. I prefer the Voyager, but the Phatty is cool, too. For polysynths, the vintage Prophet / Oberheim OB / Roland Jupiters all have their own sound, tho IMHO the distinctions between them are far less obvious than between a Moog monosynth and ever other monosynth. (FWIW, other monosynths had distinct sounds, too, i.e., the ARP 2600 and EMI). The Prophet 12, to my ears, sounds *much* better than the Prophet '08, and the modulation and sound shaping capabilities are in a league of their own, compared to every other polysynth ever built. The Prophet 12 can, remarkably, sound both vintage and modern. It's thick and lush - i.e., phat, like the best analog polysynths, but wait, what's this knob do - whoa! digital mungification! So, bottom line: if you love classic analog polysynths, get thee to a Prophet 12. Likewise, if you like the modern sound of the Dave Smith Evolver line, get thee to the Prophet 12. If you appreciate a well thought-out and powerful UI for sound creation and editing right from the front panel, get thee to the Prophet 12. If, on the other hand, you want sampled pianos and such, or you're OK with dialing in presets and using 'em as-is, then this is not the droid you're looking for. For my money, the Prophet 12 is a keeper.Unlike the Prophet '08, where I wished it were this and wished it were that, I truly could not be happier with this instrument. Buy one and put a permanent smile on your face!
Music background: musician, songwriter, producer, recording engineer
See also: Dave Smith Instruments, Dave Smith Instruments Synths / Modules