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SEQUENTIAL/DSI => Prophet => Prophet 12 => Topic started by: Zac Kyoti on July 17, 2018, 03:38:42 PM

Title: Why so few of us?
Post by: Zac Kyoti on July 17, 2018, 03:38:42 PM
I'm curious what you guys and girls think about why there are so few P12 owners/players out there? (at least relative to other expensive polys). It might not be accurate, but I get that feeling based on number of articles, forum posts, for sale listings, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my P12 and find it easy to use, but it does seem underrepresented in the synth community...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: WytchCrypt on July 17, 2018, 03:57:11 PM
It just seems that way because thousands of P12 players are way too busy creating amazing music to regularly post here  ;)
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Sacred Synthesis on July 17, 2018, 04:51:37 PM
In my opinion, one reason is the large number of Prophet 12 videos that terribly misrepresent its character.  There are so many YouTube demos that dwell exclusively on its caustic digital side, to the exclusion of its other abilities.  I fell for this misrepresentation myself, until I was finally able to borrow one.  The fact is, the P12 has a wonderful warmth to it, and it's not at all hard to find it, but it's not what seems to fascinate many owners.  It's a shame, because I found the instrument to be very strong in the domain of traditional analog sound, in addition to all the rest.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: WytchCrypt on July 17, 2018, 06:40:27 PM
It's a shame, because I found the instrument to be very strong in the domain of traditional analog sound, in addition to all the rest.

This and it's massive modulation matrix is what sold me.  I was a bit concerned after all the digital focused youtube vids you mentioned, but I still believed I could get the analog sounds I was after...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Sacred Synthesis on July 17, 2018, 06:59:52 PM
Good for you.  But I didn't believe it until I had proven it for myself.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Chaparral on July 18, 2018, 01:26:13 AM
When I bought my previous synth (Yamaha DX7 in 1984/5) I was dragged into a shop by a mate who warbled on about how it made sounds like bells and bassoons. I had no interest in buying something that made sounds "like" anything, but whilst I was reading the manual it occurred to me that by choosing the settings halfway between the 'bell' ones and the 'bassoon' ones I might start to create original sounds.
 It turns out that over 95% of DX7s returned to the factory still had all the preset sounds - nobody had bothered to modify the voices or write new ones. The DX7 was a massive seller - everyone wanted one so they could copy the noises that their favourite pop groups made.
I bought the Prophet 12 to replace 2 broken DX7s, because I realised that I could write fantastic sounds with it - I found the presets unappealing, the videos I saw all seemed to be aimed at people making very old fashioned music. Without the emergence of modern artists making radical new sounds or even using P12 presets, and with the competition of computer derived music, there has been no popular take up of musicians wanting to copy P12 sounds from their favourite songs.
 Perhaps the days of the big synth have passed their heyday and too many people are happy with laptop based music. Those of us that want more have a massive choice of digital keyboards, whereas the DX7 was clearly a 'Leader'. I am completely happy (post the Linear FM update) with my choice to buy the P12, but nobody hearing my music is going to rush out and buy a new synth because my tiny audiences mostly think about the music, not the equipment.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Soundquest on July 18, 2018, 10:55:38 AM
Perhaps the perception of "so few players" might  be partially rectified right here on this forum.  I wish more people could post their sounds, and especially their composed songs.  Pro 2 and OB 6 seem even less represented in that regard.  I know  there a lot of Pro 2's out there, but not a heck of a lot of music posted unfortunately.

As Chaparral eluded to,  there may just be less people posting full songs who use hardware instruments, especially those whom use a high grade instrument like the P12.   It is perhaps the most capable synth instrument for any genera IMO, not too hard to use either, so I don't think its a factor of the instrument itself. 

General rambling on here....but I'm getting tired of seeing the surge of cut and paste laptop stuff in so much electronic music.  Sure the technology of the software is great, but I wish more of it could be recorded as actually played reintroducing the musicianship aspect.  I mean I myself multi-track a lot, but I at least play the tracks over each other.   There is something valuable in that regard to the listener-  just like a true sunset photo versus a photoshopped one might be considered more "honest" for lack of a better word.   Anyway...this trend of more folks using a table/PC  as a more affordable or preferred method to make music nowadays might ironically only serve to only strengthen our niche as hardware users some day.

Oh, and speaking of classic....age is only one variable for being a classic.  (There's is a whole thread on this on this forum about what makes a classic).   I went to a car show a few weeks ago and saw on display an in my opinion "ugly" early 80's K car.   It didn't quite fit next to the 70's Roadrunner of the same make ;)     P12 will certainly be a classic someday, and perhaps even sooner than age would normally dictate. 

Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Sacred Synthesis on July 18, 2018, 11:13:03 AM
I completely agree with you, Soundquest.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: treason on July 18, 2018, 01:47:16 PM
In my opinion, one reason is the large number of Prophet 12 videos that terribly misrepresent its character.

Completely agree.  I own a Prophet 6, just received a Prophet X and a Prophet 12 (I've been deciding).  I love the Prophet 12 and should have got this years ago. Absolutely gorgeous synth and fantastic controller.  None of the concerns that I've read online were justified IMO, and I can't believe I was put off by them.

The Prophet X, however, didn't make my cut. It goes back.  The samples, sound of the samples and polyphony are just too much of an obstacle for what I do. Sad as I really wanted to like it ... but i just don't. I ordered the Prophet 12 after experiencing, and being disappointed by the X to see if it was something I would gravitate to ... and have I ever.

Dave really should work on his PR, address the misconceptions in the market on the Prophet 12 and have a chat with 8DIO ...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: jazzygb1 on July 18, 2018, 05:31:51 PM
I think you start on a false premise tbh, I'm not sure it's rare than anything else.


Are there really more more Roland Jupiter 80's in the wild for example than there is Dave Smith Prophet 12's?


And if you're comparing synths (not workstations like Kronos Motif Xf etc), then I think the Prophet 12 is about as popular as you can expect  a 2300 synth can be.


It's quite a specialised product so by definition has a smaller market to appeal to - much like any other dedicated synth in that price range tbh.


Even synths like the Access Virus Ti2 are relatively rare - it's the cheaper versions that tend to be more common or the cheaper synths.
You may see more Roland System 8's and JD-XA's out there, but they are less than half the price and don't come close to the Prophet 12 IMO.


I think the other issue is it isn't an analogue synth, which w[size=78%]ith all the knobs on the front panel I think people expect it to be[/size][/size][size=78%] and then maybe go into it with rather the wrong expectations.[/size]
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Don't get me wrong I think it can sound as good as most analogue synths, but it's a slow burn the Prophet 12 and takes a while to gel with (at least it did for me) and I say that as someone who absolutely LOVES the Prophet 12. :)

So I don't think it's particularly unpopular, I think it's about as popular as you could expect a synth in it's price range to be. 2300 buys you many other pieces of equipment, so there is lots of competition.

The other factor is the Prophet 12 is just an element of my music. Most of my songs feature sounds from many other synths too and tbh most of the sounds I write are created using 3 or 4 different synths.

I have never understood why some feel that making a sound with the oscillators of one synth is more valid than making it with combination of oscillators of many.

For that reason it's difficult for me to post a track showcasing my Prophet 12 because quite often it'll only supply 2 or 3 of the sounds in the track and I use other synths in most of my compositions.

For me though, the Prophet 12 is a stunning instrument and a gorgeous sounding synth.

It's possibly my favourite synth ever and I plan to keep it for life! :)

Definitely a future classic IMO. :)

As for demos - maybe there should be more showing sounds like this rather than the standard bass and leads that are pretty much ubiquitous now - show some big swirly pads like this instead. :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AFaqYyPBOjs

Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: jazzygb1 on July 18, 2018, 05:35:24 PM
Or if a bit of Depeche Mode is more your thing....:)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ph9zt6jA6HE&feature=youtu.be
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Tarjeijazz on July 29, 2018, 11:23:51 AM
The P12 family is strong <3
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Quai34 on August 02, 2018, 05:52:48 PM
I will be honest, I had never planned to buy one because the 4000 CAN$ was a price I had reached only one time when I bought my Stage 2 and I was considering it to be the maximum I could spend on a single keyboard....So, the P12 was a dream only...But that came true when I saw a new one, in a store, at 2700 CAN$....And the store had the financing as well...
So, I bought it and I love it, maybe I could have bought it earlier If I had known how gorgeous it was but I was never impressed by any reviews about the DSi synth when they were saying that the P08 sucked....
I bought a P08 and I never regretted it so, I was almost sure it was going to be the same with the P12...
But the price,'hey....Higher the price is, less and less people will buy it then, less noise....Taht's why we think we are very few...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Mr Kay on August 04, 2018, 02:19:42 AM
The P'12 is an expensive synth and it was controvestial, I guess because many people were expecting an updated Prophet V and the early factory preset, which used a lot feedback, distorsion, cool for electro-industrial, not at all for funk...

Here's the work where I used a lot of P'12 where I used a lot of techniques (VA, FM, heavy modulation...)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHjY6SNGjJ0

And that's definitely my favourite sound I made with this synth
https://thedisease.bandcamp.com/track/dusk


Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: proteus-ix on November 19, 2018, 12:26:57 PM
The fact is, the P12 has a wonderful warmth to it, and it's not at all hard to find it

As I await mine in the mail, I've been wondering about this.  I mean, seems like you can just turn up the slop, touch up a little detune, throw on some slow LFOs and dial back the filter and it should sound quite warm, no?  Are there any other tricks you advise for getting warmth, or are in the Tips and Tricks thread?
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: SandyS1 on November 19, 2018, 12:59:31 PM
The fact is, the P12 has a wonderful warmth to it, and it's not at all hard to find it

As I await mine in the mail, I've been wondering about this.  I mean, seems like you can just turn up the slop, touch up a little detune, throw on some slow LFOs and dial back the filter and it should sound quite warm, no?  Are there any other tricks you advise for getting warmth, or are in the Tips and Tricks thread?

There are a few in the tips & tricks thread. It's well worth a read.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: jdt9517 on November 19, 2018, 09:38:20 PM
The way I started was to treat it like a P-08 and start with just the 2 oscs to get a basic feel.  As I got the feel of the filters, I began incorporating the other features.  It is a very warm and lush synth, but can get really edgy with just some minor tweaks.   The P-12 really rewards finesse. 
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: proteus-ix on November 20, 2018, 12:52:11 PM
The way I started was to treat it like a P-08 and start with just the 2 oscs to get a basic feel.  As I got the feel of the filters, I began incorporating the other features.  It is a very warm and lush synth, but can get really edgy with just some minor tweaks.   The P-12 really rewards finesse.

Yeah that's generally my approach anyway - I love bass so I almost always see what kind of punchy basses I can dial in with 1 osc, and build from there.  I've also noticed the finesse thing in a lot of videos - people turn the hack etc up way too much, where I hear a sweet spot as they start turning that if they would just stop, it would be a really nice sound.  It seems to me if you allow the accumulation of it's goodness to happen from many small tweaks, you'll get much farther than if you turn everything up to 11 from the get go.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: cornonthecob on January 03, 2019, 07:33:32 AM
I'm curious what you guys and girls think about why there are so few P12 owners/players out there? (at least relative to other expensive polys). It might not be accurate, but I get that feeling based on number of articles, forum posts, for sale listings, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my P12 and find it easy to use, but it does seem underrepresented in the synth community...

Maybe not visible to the public but I use it quite a bit for Film Scoring, it is on my top of the list of favorites. I actually own Two of them (One as a spare) it gets lots of use in the studio. It really works well for Film and it is a great workhorse, Incidental etc.. You probably have heard it in movies and not even know its the P12 :) You would be surprised at how much use it gets.

Sad to see it is being discontinued, I hope there is a future replacement product and it is not the end of the line for this type of instrument. I
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: laurentluigi on January 06, 2019, 09:56:05 AM
Hello!
I'm a Prophet X owner...
I was looking for a space ship to travel across the Universe.
I find it.....but......
There is a problem with the main system...
As soon as it be fixed, I'll sell or exchange it to bring back a P12.
Fingers crossed to fix everything....
Then I'll be yours!!!!!

I'm curious what you guys and girls think about why there are so few P12 owners/players out there? (at least relative to other expensive polys). It might not be accurate, but I get that feeling based on number of articles, forum posts, for sale listings, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my P12 and find it easy to use, but it does seem underrepresented in the synth community...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: LoboLives on January 11, 2019, 11:36:21 PM
Hello!
I'm a Prophet X owner...
I was looking for a space ship to travel across the Universe.
I find it.....but......
There is a problem with the main system...
As soon as it be fixed, I'll sell or exchange it to bring back a P12.
Fingers crossed to fix everything....
Then I'll be yours!!!!!

I'm curious what you guys and girls think about why there are so few P12 owners/players out there? (at least relative to other expensive polys). It might not be accurate, but I get that feeling based on number of articles, forum posts, for sale listings, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my P12 and find it easy to use, but it does seem underrepresented in the synth community...

You are aware Sequential is discontinuing the P12 right?
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: DRM on January 21, 2019, 12:39:55 AM
I'm curious what you guys and girls think about why there are so few P12 owners/players out there? (at least relative to other expensive polys). It might not be accurate, but I get that feeling based on number of articles, forum posts, for sale listings, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my P12 and find it easy to use, but it does seem underrepresented in the synth community...
I think the reason is twofold:
#1 hobbyists are afraid of its digital sound generation and so the 'public image' of it is rather negative, not to mention there isn't a whole lot of content or emphasis on the amazing its (unique to modern) synthesizers that the silent majority know about
#2 the people who know what this synthesizer is capable of are generally silent (myself included, until now), but realize how insanely powerful it is and have an EXTREMELY positive outlook on it

In my opinion, one reason is the large number of Prophet 12 videos that terribly misrepresent its character.  There are so many YouTube demos that dwell exclusively on its caustic digital side, to the exclusion of its other abilities.  I fell for this misrepresentation myself, until I was finally able to borrow one.  The fact is, the P12 has a wonderful warmth to it, and it's not at all hard to find it, but it's not what seems to fascinate many owners.  It's a shame, because I found the instrument to be very strong in the domain of traditional analog sound, in addition to all the rest.

The very first moment that the Prophet 12 was demonstrated I was awestruck. Dave Smith literally built a modern synthesizer based around all of the principles I've come to know and understand after playing around with a host of synthesizers over the years. This is how I figured out it wasn't an "overpriced turd" as some have called it.

#1 Analog filters: they are more important than analog oscillators, especially considering I've not heard a good resonance from any software or digital hardware. This is a rather 'touchy' subject for most but it's true. The uniqueness of analog oscillators is practically discarded with most  80's and modern analog synths--this would be: a) impure waveforms due to primitive circuitry (i.e. an imperfect square that more resembles a hacked sawtooth), b) pitch variance across the oscillators, which DCOs negate! Any subtle aurally microscopic differences won't be discernible by 99% of those who claim they can hear a difference.
#2 Voice cycling: a synthesizer needs to cycle its (independent) voices to take advantage of a non-global portamento and pitch variance. Few (if any!) modern synthesizers capitalize on this...
#3 Independent portamento: I became obsessed with the Roland Jupiter-4's independent portamento (where each last voice will respond differently to the last note), and was sorely disappointed when virtually nothing does this as a 'feature'. It's far more interesting to listen to.
#4 Analog slop: you want each voice (or at least the option!) to detune one voice from another, otherwise with a perfectly tuned synthesizer or DCOs you lose quite a lot of dynamic.
#5 Flexible LFOs: it's really to have an LFO which can be extremely fast or slow, especially if you want to play with crude FM synthesis--there's no reason to limit it to being very slow

I suppose in lieu of all of that, this is (to me) this is practically a spiritual successor to the Roland Jupiter-4. I can set a random arpeggio with voice cycling and independent portamento and it's quite surreal how it feels almost the same. And then with four LFOs, I can punch in parameters to get a very convincing Vox Humana like from my Polymoog--and then take it a step further with the fourth LFO and stack feature.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: jdt9517 on January 31, 2019, 09:34:35 PM
@DRM- I think you nailed it.  While I really like my P-08, the P-12 is so much more capable.  I like having it as a "secret weapon" in my arsenal. 

Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: laurentluigi on March 06, 2019, 01:28:33 AM
Hello!
I'm a Prophet X owner...
I was looking for a space ship to travel across the Universe.
I find it.....but......
There is a problem with the main system...
As soon as it be fixed, I'll sell or exchange it to bring back a P12.
Fingers crossed to fix everything....
Then I'll be yours!!!!!

I'm curious what you guys and girls think about why there are so few P12 owners/players out there? (at least relative to other expensive polys). It might not be accurate, but I get that feeling based on number of articles, forum posts, for sale listings, etc. Don't get me wrong, I love my P12 and find it easy to use, but it does seem underrepresented in the synth community...

You are aware Sequential is discontinuing the P12 right?


The team Prophet 12 and Prophet X .....
I leave the solar system every night, and, with the tips of this forum, I go a little further every night...
Thank You all.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Soundquest on March 07, 2019, 10:09:32 AM
And behind all the controls of those two instruments I bet you do feel like a starship pilot ;)
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: laurentluigi on March 11, 2019, 06:00:58 AM
And behind all the controls of those two instruments I bet you do feel like a starship pilot ;)

You're right !!!
Half way from Indiana Jones and Captain Kirk..... Indiana Kirk or Captain Jones...!!!


I'm going slidly mad...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Razmo on March 14, 2019, 05:28:32 AM
I'm not so sure that there are so few of us... may be in here, but I often see the P12 in a lot of studio video's on the net... i have a feeling that many use it some way or the other.

The many comments about it being "digital in nature" probably has to do with the audio rate modulation of the modulation matrix. It has been stated earlier that the P12 do it's matrix modulation at approx. 11Khz, and if you start to do audio rate modulation at that relatively low speed, and then bandlimit it afterwards to get rid of the aliasing, you get this kind of harsh and flat digital "glow" on the sound, especially when you start modulating pitch at the extremes... just try it out... when you use the standard features of simple subtractive synthesis on P12 without any FM, AM or other audio rate modulation going on in the digital domain, then the P12 sounds a lot more "analog" and clean... to further underline this, try the same audio rate modulation on a Novation PEAK and you'll not hear this digital harshness... why? because it is working in the megaherz audio rate modulation in it's FPGA engine... it does make one hell of a difference.

But still... the P12 is a very very advanced synthesizer, and in many ways it's as good as a PEAK, in some areas better, and worse in others.

The reason many of the videos on the NET of the P12 has this gritty character is exactly because they are trying to demonstrate the things that are unique to the P12; the audio rate modulation of different things... but this is simply the character of the P12, and something you have to deal with if you use it. You can still do exeptional synthesis sounds with it, even if you use audio rate modulations, but the problem is, that on the net, everyone has a tendency to compare everything to MOOGs or other simple subtractive synthesizers... so they get disappointed when they do not hear the same analog'ish character from sounds on the P12 that has a lot of audio rate modulation going on... they just forget that the MOOGs cannot even touch that kind of sound.

It's the same old dumb comparisons... people compare everything to certain synths they have put on a piedestal, and anything that does not sound like that are simply "not good enough" ... if people just started to create NEW sounds for the P12, instead of constantly trying to emulate everything else they've heard, then the P12 will stand out on it's own... being itself... and I think that the P12 still needs some people to create some sounds specificall made for just the P12, not trying to emulate something else... this is when people will realize how unique it is... not better than anything else... just unique.

I'm getting a P12 desktop in 14 days... and I'll start my mission towards creating a bank of exactly that... unique sounds that is not supposed to replicate other synths in any way... looking forward to seeing how that will go...
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: laurentluigi on March 14, 2019, 06:12:16 AM
You're right !
I'm using the P12 and the PX exactly like you say, starting from scratches....
Without thinking of duplicate any others synths.

Each time, I take a different way, everything depends on the past day.
This is so exciting !!!

Except the strange commercial way of the utility sample software for the PX..... Thanks Mr Smith !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Chaparral on March 15, 2019, 02:32:09 AM
I too agree with Razmo. It would never have occurred to me to make copies of 'old sounds'. That is not what I do. I read through a number of comments here which seemed to be overpicky about this lovely little synth. I have good ears and have written voices that found their own way to completion once I had started the process of exploring the basic timbre. None of these new sounds have disappointed me.
 I read many complaints about the P12 over the years since I bought one and many of them seem a bit unfair. One that I believed - about the P12 not being as good at Bass sounds - disappeared as soon as my son leant me a subwoofer. At one point I asked myself if other Synth makers were posting bad comments here to 'diss' the opposition, but I guess the truth is that a forum attracts comments. My dream is still to have a second P12 so I have one for the road and one safe at home. I have never regretted a penny or minute spent on my P12 - whereas the 4 stereo Boss pedals I purchased to control the beast were rubbish.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Chaparral on August 12, 2019, 08:08:05 AM
I am now officially 2 of us. I only had the one working synth, Cassandra (my Prophet 12), but I have just taken delivery of CassandraB. I had been concerned about taking my P12 out to gigs because of all the work I put into creating unique voices, and the dangers of proximity to an unpredictable audience (I don't get to play big venues).
Now I have a second P12 I can go forth without worries and inflict my synth savagery upon an unsuspecting world.
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: standingwave on August 15, 2019, 04:21:01 AM
Congratulations!
 I guess you could call that...
 polyphonic polyamory.
 Good band name come to think of it. Haha

 PS- maybe a couple more volume pedals and you could do fully immersive sound scapes with 4 stereo outputs!
Title: Re: Why so few of us?
Post by: Chaparral on August 16, 2019, 12:52:15 AM
There is the other bonus of using the same voice on both and subtly tweaking one synth voice away from the other structurally to make 'fatter' sounds. Something to do on a rainy day! I already do this sometimes between identical parts A and B on my original P12, but now I can do it with the more complex voices.