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SEQUENTIAL/DSI => Prophet => Prophet Rev2 => Topic started by: LoboLives on January 29, 2017, 12:41:22 PM

Title: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: LoboLives on January 29, 2017, 12:41:22 PM
I heard Dave say this during a lot of demonstration videos: "Because of new technology we got the price down."

So here we have a sixteen voice (or eight) analog synth with programmability and bitimbrality going for $1500-$1900. So how can the Prophet 6, OB6, Prophet 12 and even Pro 2 continue to be higher in price? (In the Pro 2 case about the same as the REV 2 eight voice). In Canada my Prophet 6 cost me about $4000 with the exchange rate but I'm really curious if this is going to impact the process of building the previous instruments or even future DSI products. Some people are saying the price is that low because they used DCOs but the Prophet 12 also does and is more expensive. Even the $599 AS-1 has two VCOs so this explanation can't be totally right.

I just fear that DSI panicked when the DeepMind12 was released and tried to compete. This worries me because while they keyboards themselves are made in the states could there be a possibility of cheaper parts being used? I remember looking at buying a PRS CE guitar recently. It was almost half of the price of their regular models and they said it was because it was a bolt on neck instead of a neck through...but then I found out later it was also because it was Korean electronics being used as well. Which is fine because I go after the sound not the name or origin of the product...but I'm lucky I passed this up because I heard nothing but horror stories with the electronics having to be replaced on the guitars.

So I'm really curious how the REV2s price is going to impact DSI's past products and also it's future products. With the amount of features and voices the REV2 has can DSI even attempt to justify higher prices with less voices and features? Can they attempt to explain why this or that can't be done with VCOs. I dunno something isn't adding up to me and I'm very curious what the future brings.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: robinkle on January 29, 2017, 02:38:49 PM
I would guess the Prophet 12 and newer uses modern technology. Prophet 12 does not use DCO's, it's DSP based Virtual-analog oscillators. The Pro-2 is expensive because it uses the DSP Oscillators like the Prophet-12 and it uses two descrete filters, which is more expensive to make. The Prophet '08 and REV2 uses IC's, basically synth on a chip. This makes it cheaper. I would guess the REV2 keybed is more expensive then the oher lot since they've started using Fatar keybeds, which are better in my opinion. DeepMind12 has it's limitations. Since they have different features, they don't compete equally. Personally the REV2 would be a better choice for me over the DeepMind 12 because it has 5 octaves, more voices and more oscillator options.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: Sacred Synthesis on January 29, 2017, 04:03:24 PM
I highly doubt DSI would stoop to building a cheap instrument.  It's not like them.  At least the frame of the REV2 seems to be identical to the Prophet '08's (although a little larger), which I think is pretty solid and sturdy.  But I wouldn't be surprised if the REV2 was meant to provide a bit of competition for the Deepmind 12.  Still, I would put the REV2 in an entirely different higher class.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: chysn on January 29, 2017, 05:43:03 PM
Don't underestimate the cost of the wooden cabinetry. The Prophet 6 might be hundreds of dollars less were it in a sheet metal chassis like the REV2's.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: DavidDever on January 29, 2017, 06:00:39 PM
Don't underestimate the cost of the wooden cabinetry. The Prophet 6 might be hundreds of dollars less were it in a sheet metal chassis like the REV2's.

On the Pro-2, by point of example, the wooden key fascia is screwed to folded metal which runs from side to side; I wouldn't guess it to be too terribly expensive, but rather a nice touch that probably added less than $100 to the retail price.

I just fear that DSI panicked when the DeepMind12 was released and tried to compete. This worries me because while they keyboards themselves are made in the states could there be a possibility of cheaper parts being used?

I don't believe so - it was not anything new that the DeepMind would be a price-conscious design; keep in mind, as well, that there are far more knobs on the REV2 than sliders on the DeepMind, and I suspect that one of the costs that has been optimized over the Prophet '08 has been the panel scanning circuitry. (I have a sneaking suspicion that the OLED display is inexpensive in high enough quantities to potentially be a cost savings.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: dsetto on January 29, 2017, 09:05:31 PM
What is "panel scanning circuitry"?
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: eXode on January 30, 2017, 06:11:38 AM
I think you are reading in too much. The Prophet 08 is 10 years old, technology/production processes gets cheaper with time. It's pretty easy to guess that they aren't using the exact same circuitry/processors for modulation etc, and thus they can give us more functionality/power at a reduced cost.

Dunno if true, but I also heard something about that the "synth on a chip" has been revised as well, if true that could result in lower costs as well.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: dsetto on January 30, 2017, 06:30:34 AM
The topic I am interested in is changes that reduce the timing responsiveness of all key on and key off associations with any sound change. I am not implying there are any in the rev2 as I haven't played it.

I don't know all the elements that affect this. I am aware there are analog or digital elements involved that can address these things. I think the Amp Envelope Generator and Filter Envelope Generator are key ones. What I've read from forums are that the first AEG's/FEG's employed on synths (in the 80's I suppose) may possibly have been slower, due to underpowered DSPs.

So, here's a place where cheaper won't be worse in my book. ... If timing response is not made slower.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: Robot Heart on January 30, 2017, 11:45:20 AM
We would never sacrifice playability for cost reduction. Rest assured the REV2 is just as responsive as all our other instruments.

eXode is on the right track regarding cost reduction, though we haven't revised the Curtis chips.
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: eXode on January 30, 2017, 12:48:34 PM
eXode is on the right track regarding cost reduction, though we haven't revised the Curtis chips.

Just for clarification, I didn't mean revised as in changed from a functionality perspective, was speaking more about that I had heard that the manufacturing process of the chip itself supposedly had changed (i.e. comparable to nm in computer electronics?).

But I'm not questioning if you say that it hasn't changed. :)
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: dsetto on January 30, 2017, 12:51:02 PM
We would never sacrifice playability for cost reduction. Rest assured the REV2 is just as responsive as all our other instruments.

Excellent. Thank you!
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: jazzygb1 on April 17, 2017, 01:53:53 PM
I would guess the Prophet 12 and newer uses modern technology. Prophet 12 does not use DCO's, it's DSP based Virtual-analog oscillators.

I think you're wrong about that.
On the spec sheet on the website it clearly states...

"2 digitally controlled analog oscillators (DCOs) per voice"

Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: DavidDever on April 17, 2017, 02:41:52 PM
I would guess the Prophet 12 and newer uses modern technology. Prophet 12 does not use DCO's, it's DSP based Virtual-analog oscillators.

I think you're wrong about that.
On the spec sheet on the website it clearly states...

"2 digitally controlled analog oscillators (DCOs) per voice"

? Where does it say that?

https://www.davesmithinstruments.com/product/prophet-12-keyboard/

Quote
Five DSP-based oscillators per voice (including one sine wave sub oscillator)

and

https://www.davesmithinstruments.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/DSI-Synth-Comparison-Chart-4.1.pdf?x72411
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: jazzygb1 on April 17, 2017, 03:41:06 PM

https://www.davesmithinstruments.com/product/prophet-12-keyboard/

Quote
Five DSP-based oscillators per voice (including one sine wave sub oscillator)

and

https://www.davesmithinstruments.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/DSI-Synth-Comparison-Chart-4.1.pdf?x72411

Ah yes my apologies.
You're quite right about the P12 (I own one), I misread your previous post and thought you were saying the Rev 2 has DSP oscillators, which of course it doesn't - hence my spec post from the Rev2 site. (doh).
Title: Re: Price decrease because of "New Technology"
Post by: pmanderson on April 18, 2017, 04:26:40 AM
He may have meant several things.

1) The addition of voices and modulations required more microprocessor speed ( for 48 Envelopes, 64 LFOs etc.).
The fact he could increase the microprocessor at a lower price than 10 years ago sounds plausible. '16 voices today much cheaper than 10 years ago'
2) His PCB supplier or assembler may have improved their tech. From what I understand, he is a couple of blocks away. Scheduling a block for volume production with improved (faster and more automation) speed will equal low cost.
3) More likely: Unlike in 2007, he has a better idea of how many he can sell so his unit price can be negotiated at lower price for higher volume production.

I am less concerned by the small price adjustment. I am more interested in the improved keybed, better buttons and better UI layout (DCO). Everything else is a bonus.