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Question: The FEEL of OB6 and P6 controls. Who has compared both?

I own a Prophet-6. I really like the "feel" of the Prophet-6 controls, especially the potentiometer knobs that, though not very big, have a fine amount of control because they have a lovely smooth resistance to movement (if you ever had Olympus OM system Zuiko lenses, it was the same on them, the focusing action on those was better than any other lenses I ever saw).

I heard a video that compared the OB6 and P6 and said that the OB6 controls felt a little cheaper than the P6. Are the OB6 controls "looser" compared to the P6. I noticed that on an old OB8 I tried once the controls didn't have the feel of the Prophet-5 for instance and I preferred the P5 controls.

Or would you say the OB6 controls feel the same as the P6?

This is for people who have both (or have tried both) to answer.
Prophet-6 nut. Formerly, just a Prophet-5 nut.

Re: Question: The FEEL of OB6 and P6 controls. Who has compared both?
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2018, 07:59:33 AM »
I own an OB6 (module version) and a Prophet REV2, and I've played on my friend's Prophet 6. And, although the physical knobs might be different on each, the feel is basically the same. Not surprising since Sequential (formerly DSI) uses basically the same ALPS potentiometers inside their machines.

What is most annoying to me though is not so much the feel of the knobs, but rather their lack of resolution for certain parameters. Much like on the Prophet 5. But, 35 years ago, they had the excuse of being limited by the available/affordable technology of the day. Not so in 2018. No excuse, except the lame one of wanting to facilitate MIDI CC compatibility.

As for the "wobbly" potentiometer caps that some owners have mentioned on their OB6, on my module version they're still held firmly on the pots shafts so far. But they do "feel" a little cheaper because of their shape (purely a personal taste). Big, comfortable, great looking Minimoog D Cosmo phenolic knobs these are definitely not.

Minimoog D (vintage), OB6 (Desktop), Oberheim Matrix-6 (MIDI Controller), Prophet REV2-16, DeepMind 12

Sleep of Reason

Re: Question: The FEEL of OB6 and P6 controls. Who has compared both?
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2018, 08:18:37 AM »
The difference that particular user felt probably has to do entirely with surface perception than any qualitative discrepancy in performance. The knobs outwardly appear more high quality due to their nice rubber grip, but if you take the P6 knobs off to inspect them internally, you'll immediately realize they're really just a Potemkin village.

Re: Question: The FEEL of OB6 and P6 controls. Who has compared both?
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2018, 10:20:00 AM »
The difference that particular user felt probably has to do entirely with surface perception than any qualitative discrepancy in performance. The knobs outwardly appear more high quality due to their nice rubber grip, but if you take the P6 knobs off to inspect them internally, you'll immediately realize they're really just a Potemkin village.
I owned the P6 and now own the OB-6. The pots on the P6 always annoyed me, because they're wobbly. I've been through 4-5 P6's since it came out (for various reasons), and most of them had some knobs that were wobbly/not positioned straight.
The OB-6 pots seem much more sturdy, though I suspect they're not. They're just bigger, and I like that.

Re: Question: The FEEL of OB6 and P6 controls. Who has compared both?
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2018, 11:13:58 AM »
Ahh, gotta love the internet. Trying to find the answer to what seems like a yes/no question leads to a mess of conflicting opinions. You can find any opinion you want to either back up your claims or refute them. What an age.

Obviously, hands on is the only way to know for yourself. Make a purchase and return it if not what the doc ordered. It's sad that local stores in smaller markets just don't have these synth on display to check out.

Original Model D <> Sub 37 <> Minitaur <> Slim Phatty <> OB-6 <> Prophet Rev2 8Voice <> Integra 7 <> SE-02 <> Prologue16 <> Triton Le <> Boss Dr. Rhythm DR-55 <> Sound Gizmo

"They're not aliens...they're Americans!"
(The Mouse That Roared, 1959)

Re: Question: The FEEL of OB6 and P6 controls. Who has compared both?
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2019, 06:42:56 AM »
I've had both Prophet 6 and OB-6 (still got the OB-6 as it's 10 x better sound wise to me!), also had the Rev 2 which has similar/same knobs as P6.

P6 knobs were fine but due to the size they felt a bit picky, and turning them wasn't as fun or smooth as the OB-6. On these DSI pots you could (on p6/rev2) sometimes feel the imperfections as they turned, kinda like grit, there was no damping. On OB-6 there is space between the part you touch and the pot shaft so you don't perceive that gritty feel which is a great bonus on the OB-6 when you are working with its glorious sound, the controls feel as good as it sounds.

OB-6 has wider caps (all the same pots underneath no doubt) but because they are bigger caps they FEEL more solid to me. well the plastic itself doesn't feel 'solid', and the metal tipped/rubber knobs on the P6 did feel nice, but in action the OB-6 feels 'better'. Smoother, more assured, more fun and smoother as the radius is bigger so you can turn it slower as you change say the cutoff.


Neither of mine, nor rev2 had 'wobbly pots' or wonky pots, all good, but rev2 and p6 felt more similar to me I guess than OB-6. Ob-6 is better by maybe 10%? feel and use wise? nd even looks wise in reality it's a non issue as I feel I reach out for them better (due to a better control panel layout on OB-6) so it's more intuitive and they just feel nicer in the fingers with space around them)

It's a chunkier, more robust feel on the OB-6, while P6 feels a bit idiosyncratic and 'small', not sure if the spacing is different between the pots to allow for the larger caps but if so that would also explain why the layout feels more fun to use and I can grab knobs better without double checking like I had to on the P6/Rev 2.

None of them are bad, but when you factor in the OB-6 sounds 10x better in most cases than the P6 (to me) it's a no brainer to prefer the OB-6.

« Last Edit: March 02, 2019, 06:45:13 AM by SynthHead »