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P12 vs DX7!

P12 vs DX7!
« on: June 22, 2019, 11:15:24 AM »
Hello there! Newbie here at the DSI/Sequential forum.

 I've been "in the box" only for years but now I've got a Prophet 12 on it's way and will be able to play with it within a couple of days, and super excited to finally get familiar with DSI/Sequential instruments up close and personal! I've only briefly played with one in a store but done a lot of research so I'm pretty confident I'm gonna be happy.

Theres just 1 thing that I have a hard time letting go about the P12, and thats the fact that it almost has DX7 style FM (phase modulation). I'm a total "FM"/phase modulation junkie so when I heard about the FM update I was almost mindblown, like, wow this is just gonna be my dream synth. Then after some more reading, I found out that it was another variety of FM. It felt like dropping to the ground 1 millimeter from the goal.... sooo close, yet so far.. Personally for me it would just have been so perfect. But, anyhow, after digging up more user demos it seems like the FM still can get quite a few interesting tones and similar to the DX in character too so it's going to be really fun to try. I've also read that the code space in the P12 is almost maxed out already. Still, I'd just like to express how awesome it would be to get true DX7 style FM in there as a final glorious update.

I'd be interested to see how other P12 users feel about that feature request as well. I'd happily replace the linear FM with phase modulation as an optional update if that was possible too. All that being said, I've already accepted that I wont be using the P12 to do any of my DX7 style sounds, and that's ok, I'll probably get an upgraded DX7 for that purpose eventually or just keep working with FM8. (the workflow seems a bit bothersome on the DX7 unless controlling from computer program, so the sound has to make up for that to be worth the hassle)

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2019, 12:42:16 AM »
I too was a DX7 Junkie, or at least it was the only synth I used and I had written over 250 voices for it. Sadly 'Marsha' died and her (second hand) replacement only lasted 2 years.
When I got 'Cassandra' (my P12) it didn't have Linear FM (huge disappointment) but I spent a year learning to use everything else. and made 100 voices, and when the Linear FM arrived I was overjoyed, and made 100 more.
I never expected to recreate my fantastic sound world from the DX7, and whilst I am sorry for it's loss much of it survives on 25 years of recordings. It was always a bit limited by having just one modulation pedal, and I had to be very familiar with the internal architecture to do real time programming to increase my tonal range whilst performing.

I have treated Cassandra as a very different Beast, and the way I programme voices so that sound can be manipulated by 2 pedals, 2 wheels, 2 pressure sensitive ribbons etc is a sonic joy. I run voice parts A and B through separate volume pedals. I could probably do a whole gig with 4 voices and nobody would even notice. (especially a Rock gig).
 I do occasionally come across sounds like the ones I made on DX7, but having 2 parts of a voice to blend and all the different directions I can move timbre using the mod matrix and controls, leaves me wanting to play differently. There are only 4 oscillators per part of voice, but they are not just sine waves, and can be looped in many ways to build a greater variety of 'Algorithm' shapes than the DX7 offered with 6 'modulators'.
I think you will not regret your purchase. The P12 is not a DX7, but can do so much more if you dig deep.

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2019, 04:54:52 PM »
I love my P-12.  However, it is not a replacement for a DX-7.  I ended up buying a Montage for that duty (in part). 

I was at first really disappointed that the the P-12 could not do true DX style FM - even with the linear upgrade.  However, there are so many strengths to the P-12, that I do not miss the DX component at all. 

I think you'll be really happy with your purchase.
Jim Thorburn .  Toys-  Dave Smith: Prophet 08;
Pro 2; Prophet 12; EastWest Orchestral soft synths; Yamaha S-90; Yamaha Montage 8, Yamaha DX-7; KARP Odyssey; Ensoniq ESQ-1.  All run through a Cubase DAW with a Tascam DM-24 board.

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2019, 07:23:14 PM »
Perhaps we might see a completely FM based synth from Sequential next.

Prophet FM?
Prophet 6, Prophet X, Moog Sub 37, Tempest Drum Computer, Roland V Piano, Fender American Stratocaster, Roger Linn Adrenalinn iii, Origin Effects Cali76 and SlideRig compressor, ASUS Zenbook Pro Computer, Soundcraft MTK 22 Mixer, Mark Of The Unicorn Digital Performer 10 Software.

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2019, 06:18:28 AM »
Hello there! Newbie here at the DSI/Sequential forum.

 I've been "in the box" only for years but now I've got a Prophet 12 on it's way and will be able to play with it within a couple of days, and super excited to finally get familiar with DSI/Sequential instruments up close and personal! I've only briefly played with one in a store but done a lot of research so I'm pretty confident I'm gonna be happy.

Theres just 1 thing that I have a hard time letting go about the P12, and thats the fact that it almost has DX7 style FM (phase modulation). I'm a total "FM"/phase modulation junkie so when I heard about the FM update I was almost mindblown, like, wow this is just gonna be my dream synth. Then after some more reading, I found out that it was another variety of FM. It felt like dropping to the ground 1 millimeter from the goal.... sooo close, yet so far.. Personally for me it would just have been so perfect. But, anyhow, after digging up more user demos it seems like the FM still can get quite a few interesting tones and similar to the DX in character too so it's going to be really fun to try. I've also read that the code space in the P12 is almost maxed out already. Still, I'd just like to express how awesome it would be to get true DX7 style FM in there as a final glorious update.

I'd be interested to see how other P12 users feel about that feature request as well. I'd happily replace the linear FM with phase modulation as an optional update if that was possible too. All that being said, I've already accepted that I wont be using the P12 to do any of my DX7 style sounds, and that's ok, I'll probably get an upgraded DX7 for that purpose eventually or just keep working with FM8. (the workflow seems a bit bothersome on the DX7 unless controlling from computer program, so the sound has to make up for that to be worth the hassle)


The Prophet 12 is a hybrid digital analogue synth with some FM capabilities, but it's not a true FM synth and so not a replacement for a dedicated FM synth like a DX7.
You should IMO look upon the FM capabilities as a bonus rather than as a core part of the synth.
It will certainly let you create some nice FM style voices, but not the same way a DX7 would.
What really matters though is how it sounds and where it shines IMO is the leads, basses and pads which are great.
The Prophet 12 is a 'slow burn' too - especially if it's your first DSI synth.
By that I mean it takes a while to gel with and get used to a few quirks (like no on off switch for oscillators), which considering it has all those knobs on the front you don't expect.
I expected it to be much more immediate than it was tbh and after a month or so I was within a whisker of selling it on.
However after a while it just 'clicks' with you and now it's possibly my favourite synth ever, so it's worth persevering if you (like I was) are a little underwhelmed to begin with.
It truly is a wonderful instrument and I hope you'll enjoy using it as much as I now do. :)




Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2019, 11:55:03 AM »
jazzygb1,  RE: no on/off for oscillators -check the osc shape for each osc, you can select off...or maybe you mean a dedicated switch.
DSI Equipment: Poly Evolver Keyboard, Evolver desktop, Prophet 8,  Pro-2, OB6, P-12
 

https://Soundcloud.com/wavescape-1

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2019, 06:33:02 PM »
jazzygb1,  RE: no on/off for oscillators -check the osc shape for each osc, you can select off...or maybe you mean a dedicated switch.


Yes I meant by the oscillator buttons.
It would be so much easier to be able to turn them on and off at a press of a button.
The 4 oscillator buttons are a missed opportunity imo which is a shame.

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2019, 10:14:53 PM »
So I've gotten the P12 now, and it's veeeeery nice!

Here are some details from the physical Manual Addendum for OS version 1.3

Page 2:
Quote - "... linear FM, which is the type found on the classic Yamaha DX-series of synthesizers."

On page 3 they talk about using sines as operators and that the DX-7 only used sine waves.

I've also seen DX-style FM being mentioned in a comparison chart for different DSI synths. All in all, to non FM geeks, this may just look like hair splitting, since the FM in the P12 does sound similar in character. I can't help to wonder why they didn't go for phase modulation when they are referring to the DX on numerous occasions. Anyhow, wont speculate further, but I'll still stick with my opinion that bringing phase modulation to the P12 would be awesome (I'd happily replace linear FM with phase modulation for an optional update too), that would be off the charts goodwill points from me to sequential if they do it! (I still think it was major awesome that they added linear FM, that kind of after release support is super appreciated). I did notice that mixing in a bit of linear FM in analog style patches sounded very pleasant, so I'm looking forward to deep-diving with this machine :)

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2019, 12:12:57 PM »
I just purchased a Prophet 12 (my second DSI synth after my Rev2), but have been following this closely for FM.

http://kodamo.fr/index.php

Re: P12 vs DX7!
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2019, 04:21:09 PM »
I just purchased a Prophet 12 (my second DSI synth after my Rev2), but have been following this closely for FM.

http://kodamo.fr/index.php

Cool! how does it compare in sound to the Rev 2 in your opinion?

That FM synth looks kinda cool, but I'm not a fan of touchscreens (assuming they are gonna stop working and be glitchy etc), so I'd probably prefer to have something like that as a VST.

After getting to know the Prophet 12 better over the last few days, I've found the Linear FM to sound pleasant as a spice to more analog style sounds, but not really liked it for traditional sine based FM sounds, but I will put more time into it. As some others have stated before, the range of modulation feels a bit limited, but it also seems to break up if I add more than one mod slot dedicated to the same operator pair, so it seems like it simply doesn't go as bright as Phase Modulation can, instead it seems to break up before reaching up there.

Here's a question for P12 veterans:
What's the latest up to date recommendation for a software companion for preset management? I've seen two mentioned here in the forum. I've also seen one of them getting flak for being buggy etc.