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Analog only?

Analog only?
« on: October 20, 2021, 12:33:48 PM »
This is probably coincidence but I noticed that since the Focusrite acquisition of Sequential, the instruments have been strictly analog. Prophet 5/10 Rev 4 and Take 5. I believe the Pro 3 was released prior to the official announcement of the acquisition but I am wondering since Novation and Sequential are both under the same umbrella now, will Sequential be regulated to doing analog based instruments only while Novation handles Wavetable, FM, Sample, Drum machine based synths/instruments to avoid any cross over or cannibalism of products.

It is likely coincidence but I do wonder if we'll actually see Sequential even touch wavetables or linear FM again or will the brand remain in VCO based territory.

I'm fine with it either way but I do think it would be a missed opportunity if we don't see a VCO/Wavetable based hybrid poly based on the Pro 3 architecture (especially with 2 VCOs and 2 Wavetable oscillators) simply to avoid stepping on a partner brand's toes.

chysn

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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2021, 03:32:09 PM »
I think the promise was that Sequential could continue to operate as they have been. A big part of that is "doing what they feel like." There probably haven't been enough instruments released to really read the tea leaves.

Also, "cannibalization" was a sort of 90s marketing buzzword, and worrying about it is on the outs after Steve Jobs proclaimed, "If you don't cannibalize yourself, someone else will." In a lot of ways, the Take 5 really exemplifies that very sentiment.

The Pro 3 wavetable oscillator is too good not to come 'round again in some form.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2021, 03:38:44 PM by chysn »
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LPF83

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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2021, 03:49:44 PM »
Anyone's guess what the future holds, but I think Dave is best known for his analog designs and it seems to me that (for now at least) he is kind of playing his strongest card.  After all, the influx of digital synths (and the fact they can be manufactured at a much lower cost, generally) is a big part of what put Sequential out of business the first time around.

And now, there are inexpensive powerhouses like Hydrasynth entering the market, Korg doing some low cost wavetable and FM synths, and Waldorf doing some interesting things with wavetables as well.  For so many years we had good digital options, but the analog offerings for such a long time didn't seem up to par with vintage instruments -- and now that they are there and demand for good analogs is strong.

But I see that as where things are right now, and not necessarily where they will be five years from now.  Dave has always said he has a thing for digital oscillators combined with analog filters, and has claimed that the Prophet 12 was one of his favorite creations.  So one has to imagine he will do another digital synth in the future.  I don't know the details of the Focusrite arrangement but I'm sure they're smart people and will let Dave's imagination drive the product offerings rather than try to micromanage what he should develop.
Prophet 10, Prophet 6, OB-6, Prophet 12m, Prophet Rev2-16, Toraiz AS-1, Moog SlimPhatty, Hydrasynth desktop, Korg Minilogue XDm, Roland SPD-30, Roland SPD-SX Special Edition, Roland KT-10, Maschine, Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen + Octopre, Strymon Pedals, Cubase Pro 11.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2021, 07:27:57 PM »
I think the promise was that Sequential could continue to operate as they have been. A big part of that is "doing what they feel like." There probably haven't been enough instruments released to really read the tea leaves.

Also, "cannibalization" was a sort of 90s marketing buzzword, and worrying about it is on the outs after Steve Jobs proclaimed, "If you don't cannibalize yourself, someone else will." In a lot of ways, the Take 5 really exemplifies that very sentiment.

The Pro 3 wavetable oscillator is too good not to come 'round again in some form.

Oh no for sure but that's the point I'm trying to make. Sequential can do different variations of a similar concept under the Sequential banner but if Novation is wanting to make a similar concept under their banner....who's name is it going to go under? Sure, there could be a collaboration but at some point something's got to give.

If Sequential was set to release a new drum machine and Novation wanted to release a drum machine around the same time, who gets preferential treatment?

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2021, 07:33:50 PM »
Anyone's guess what the future holds, but I think Dave is best known for his analog designs and it seems to me that (for now at least) he is kind of playing his strongest card.  After all, the influx of digital synths (and the fact they can be manufactured at a much lower cost, generally) is a big part of what put Sequential out of business the first time around.

And now, there are inexpensive powerhouses like Hydrasynth entering the market, Korg doing some low cost wavetable and FM synths, and Waldorf doing some interesting things with wavetables as well.  For so many years we had good digital options, but the analog offerings for such a long time didn't seem up to par with vintage instruments -- and now that they are there and demand for good analogs is strong.

But I see that as where things are right now, and not necessarily where they will be five years from now.  Dave has always said he has a thing for digital oscillators combined with analog filters, and has claimed that the Prophet 12 was one of his favorite creations.  So one has to imagine he will do another digital synth in the future.  I don't know the details of the Focusrite arrangement but I'm sure they're smart people and will let Dave's imagination drive the product offerings rather than try to micromanage what he should develop.

For sure, but one could also say there are also analog synths outside of Sequential on the market now so they are in the same boat regardless if it's analog or digital oscillators. I think my concern with Sequential doing analog only is....well what else can be done that they either haven't done or isn't already an option from another company now? Sure they could do reissue after reissue but I think that would be a terrible idea to become a "greatest hits" company. But what else is next in the analog realm? A VCO based bi timbral or multitimbral powerhouse? Sure...but then what?

Actually something I've noticed is the Prophet X and Prophet XL are now only available in select few Long And McQuade stores in Canada and not available to order. Perhaps that's the next synth on the chopping block? Maybe Focusrite is telling them to nix any non analog gear?

LPF83

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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2021, 05:24:13 PM »
Anyone's guess what the future holds, but I think Dave is best known for his analog designs and it seems to me that (for now at least) he is kind of playing his strongest card.  After all, the influx of digital synths (and the fact they can be manufactured at a much lower cost, generally) is a big part of what put Sequential out of business the first time around.

And now, there are inexpensive powerhouses like Hydrasynth entering the market, Korg doing some low cost wavetable and FM synths, and Waldorf doing some interesting things with wavetables as well.  For so many years we had good digital options, but the analog offerings for such a long time didn't seem up to par with vintage instruments -- and now that they are there and demand for good analogs is strong.

But I see that as where things are right now, and not necessarily where they will be five years from now.  Dave has always said he has a thing for digital oscillators combined with analog filters, and has claimed that the Prophet 12 was one of his favorite creations.  So one has to imagine he will do another digital synth in the future.  I don't know the details of the Focusrite arrangement but I'm sure they're smart people and will let Dave's imagination drive the product offerings rather than try to micromanage what he should develop.

For sure, but one could also say there are also analog synths outside of Sequential on the market now so they are in the same boat regardless if it's analog or digital oscillators. I think my concern with Sequential doing analog only is....well what else can be done that they either haven't done or isn't already an option from another company now? Sure they could do reissue after reissue but I think that would be a terrible idea to become a "greatest hits" company. But what else is next in the analog realm? A VCO based bi timbral or multitimbral powerhouse? Sure...but then what?

Actually something I've noticed is the Prophet X and Prophet XL are now only available in select few Long And McQuade stores in Canada and not available to order. Perhaps that's the next synth on the chopping block? Maybe Focusrite is telling them to nix any non analog gear?

In my mind, the "greatest hits" analogy doesn't really suit this example, because doing a proper reissue of a vintage synthesizer is, I'm guessing, actually a lot harder than inventing the synth the first time around.  It's like the difference in doing sound design with the goal of coming up with something new and interesting, versus trying to perfectly replicate a sound from somewhere else -- the latter is *infinitely* more difficult to achieve a satisfying result.   When creating a new synthesizer, the designer has all these creative liberties to do what they want, limited only by budget and ideas.  But perfectly nailing the sound of an original vintage synth requires deep reverse engineering of the target instrument.

That said, I don't think Sequential will be limited to re-issues.  I'm actually a bit surprised Dave remade the Prophet 5 at all, because I'm not sure that was what he wanted to do as much as it was something he did in the best interest of the business.  This is a time-tested conundrum of product engineering... sometimes you have to produce one thing to keep the lights on and fund the R&D for what you really want to be doing, this is actually quite common.

I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that the Prophet X/XL have not been great sellers for Sequential, and the 8dio situation probably isn't helping.  Or maybe it did sell well enough and is just reaching the end of its product lifecycle.

One thing I have noticed over the decades is that synth buyers tend to be sort of a fickle audience.  The same reasons that make the GAS phenomenon so common, are the same reasons that most synthesizer offerings seem to see their sales fizzle out after a few years.  It's like the buying audience is always looking to purchase the latest and greatest, even if it doesn't sound any better (or in many cases worse) than earlier product offerings.

In fact, one of the ONLY exceptions I've seen to this over the years is the rediculously long product lifecycle that Access music seems to have with the Virus.  Kemper (the designer) either ran out of ideas or lost his passion for synth making, and focuses on amps instead.  As a result, they just keep making the Virus Ti2 and I guess people keep buying it.  But aside from that one case, the trend always seems to be out with the old and in with the new, even if the new is a recreation of the old.
Prophet 10, Prophet 6, OB-6, Prophet 12m, Prophet Rev2-16, Toraiz AS-1, Moog SlimPhatty, Hydrasynth desktop, Korg Minilogue XDm, Roland SPD-30, Roland SPD-SX Special Edition, Roland KT-10, Maschine, Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen + Octopre, Strymon Pedals, Cubase Pro 11.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2021, 06:48:45 PM »
Anyone's guess what the future holds, but I think Dave is best known for his analog designs and it seems to me that (for now at least) he is kind of playing his strongest card.  After all, the influx of digital synths (and the fact they can be manufactured at a much lower cost, generally) is a big part of what put Sequential out of business the first time around.

And now, there are inexpensive powerhouses like Hydrasynth entering the market, Korg doing some low cost wavetable and FM synths, and Waldorf doing some interesting things with wavetables as well.  For so many years we had good digital options, but the analog offerings for such a long time didn't seem up to par with vintage instruments -- and now that they are there and demand for good analogs is strong.

But I see that as where things are right now, and not necessarily where they will be five years from now.  Dave has always said he has a thing for digital oscillators combined with analog filters, and has claimed that the Prophet 12 was one of his favorite creations.  So one has to imagine he will do another digital synth in the future.  I don't know the details of the Focusrite arrangement but I'm sure they're smart people and will let Dave's imagination drive the product offerings rather than try to micromanage what he should develop.

For sure, but one could also say there are also analog synths outside of Sequential on the market now so they are in the same boat regardless if it's analog or digital oscillators. I think my concern with Sequential doing analog only is....well what else can be done that they either haven't done or isn't already an option from another company now? Sure they could do reissue after reissue but I think that would be a terrible idea to become a "greatest hits" company. But what else is next in the analog realm? A VCO based bi timbral or multitimbral powerhouse? Sure...but then what?

Actually something I've noticed is the Prophet X and Prophet XL are now only available in select few Long And McQuade stores in Canada and not available to order. Perhaps that's the next synth on the chopping block? Maybe Focusrite is telling them to nix any non analog gear?

In my mind, the "greatest hits" analogy doesn't really suit this example, because doing a proper reissue of a vintage synthesizer is, I'm guessing, actually a lot harder than inventing the synth the first time around.  It's like the difference in doing sound design with the goal of coming up with something new and interesting, versus trying to perfectly replicate a sound from somewhere else -- the latter is *infinitely* more difficult to achieve a satisfying result.   When creating a new synthesizer, the designer has all these creative liberties to do what they want, limited only by budget and ideas.  But perfectly nailing the sound of an original vintage synth requires deep reverse engineering of the target instrument.

That said, I don't think Sequential will be limited to re-issues.  I'm actually a bit surprised Dave remade the Prophet 5 at all, because I'm not sure that was what he wanted to do as much as it was something he did in the best interest of the business.  This is a time-tested conundrum of product engineering... sometimes you have to produce one thing to keep the lights on and fund the R&D for what you really want to be doing, this is actually quite common.

I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that the Prophet X/XL have not been great sellers for Sequential, and the 8dio situation probably isn't helping.  Or maybe it did sell well enough and is just reaching the end of its product lifecycle.

One thing I have noticed over the decades is that synth buyers tend to be sort of a fickle audience.  The same reasons that make the GAS phenomenon so common, are the same reasons that most synthesizer offerings seem to see their sales fizzle out after a few years.  It's like the buying audience is always looking to purchase the latest and greatest, even if it doesn't sound any better (or in many cases worse) than earlier product offerings.

In fact, one of the ONLY exceptions I've seen to this over the years is the rediculously long product lifecycle that Access music seems to have with the Virus.  Kemper (the designer) either ran out of ideas or lost his passion for synth making, and focuses on amps instead.  As a result, they just keep making the Virus Ti2 and I guess people keep buying it.  But aside from that one case, the trend always seems to be out with the old and in with the new, even if the new is a recreation of the old.

I mean if the PX/XL gets discontinued before the P6 and OB6 or REV2 then that would speak volumes as it was released after all of them. It's pretty much abandonware at this point. Sad, cause it's my favorite synth.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2021, 08:11:35 PM »
One thing I have noticed over the decades is that synth buyers tend to be sort of a fickle audience.  The same reasons that make the GAS phenomenon so common, are the same reasons that most synthesizer offerings seem to see their sales fizzle out after a few years.  It's like the buying audience is always looking to purchase the latest and greatest, even if it doesn't sound any better (or in many cases worse) than earlier product offerings.

I'm not sure where this begins - whether with the companies or with the customers - but there definitely is a "feed the monster" type craving for endless new products. It is an obsession, and one that ultimately harms music, because the infatuation is more materialistic than artistic.  We must have something new; now we must have something more that is new; O give us still more that is new - more, more and more.  The end result is that we're given just what we're demanding, but at the expense of retiring the older instruments. 

For those of us who want nothing to do with this cycle, the whole affair is a nightmare, because the instruments we have and love are the ones that must be retired in order to make room for the new.  And then the parts become scarce and we're in a bind not of our own making. 

I would like nothing more than for Sequential to be able to maintain my Poly Evolvers well into the future.  New instruments for me?  No way; I'm still busy with the old.  I'll never exhaust my eight-voice PEK, and it will never exhaust me.  But the monster must be fed and the old must be abandoned merely for the new.  And in the midst of this, does synthesizer music really make progress?  Does it result in greater beauty, power, and brilliance in artistic expression?  Well, it certainly results in more YouTube demonstrations.  I mean, who doesn't want to hear another cut off frequency being opened?

There's something very unhealthy about this relentless cycle.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2021, 08:13:37 PM by Sacred Synthesis »
"Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!"

- Henry David Thoreau

The Musical Synthesizer YouTube Channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChLGwGiRVs7rlZXnOG9_mUw

The Musical Synthesizer Blog: https://themusicalsynthesizer.wordpress.com

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2021, 08:33:26 PM »
One thing I have noticed over the decades is that synth buyers tend to be sort of a fickle audience.  The same reasons that make the GAS phenomenon so common, are the same reasons that most synthesizer offerings seem to see their sales fizzle out after a few years.  It's like the buying audience is always looking to purchase the latest and greatest, even if it doesn't sound any better (or in many cases worse) than earlier product offerings.

I'm not sure where this begins - whether with the companies or with the customers - but there definitely is a "feed the monster" type craving for endless new products. It is an obsession, and one that ultimately harms music, because the infatuation is more materialistic than artistic.  We must have something new; now we must have something more that is new; O give us still more that is new - more, more and more.  The end result is that we're given just what we're demanding, but at the expense of retiring the older instruments. 

For those of us who want nothing to do with this cycle, the whole affair is a nightmare, because the instruments we have and love are the ones that must be retired in order to make room for the new.  And then the parts become scarce and we're in a bind not of our own making. 

I would like nothing more than for Sequential to be able to maintain my Poly Evolvers well into the future.  New instruments for me?  No way; I'm still busy with the old.  I'll never exhaust my eight-voice PEK, and it will never exhaust me.  But the monster must be fed and the old must be abandoned merely for the new.  And in the midst of this, does synthesizer music really make progress?  Does it result in greater beauty, power, and brilliance in artistic expression?  Well, it certainly results in more YouTube demonstrations.  I mean, who doesn't want to hear another cut off frequency being opened?

There's something very unhealthy about this relentless cycle.

I do think there has to be some type of progression with instruments and innovation. Better processors, more memory, more features, a different sound pallet etc. But my concern is the rapid rate at which this happens. Guitar companies are notorious for this. They release and discontinue a new line of instruments each year.

Personally I'd like to see instruments at least have a 10 year lifespan in terms of release and retirement. Not just quickly rushed out behind the woodshed within 1-2 years simply "because".

I was going to get a Prophet XL next year...but I don't think that will happen now sadly.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2021, 08:54:59 PM by LoboLives »

LPF83

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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2021, 05:43:44 PM »
One thing I have noticed over the decades is that synth buyers tend to be sort of a fickle audience.  The same reasons that make the GAS phenomenon so common, are the same reasons that most synthesizer offerings seem to see their sales fizzle out after a few years.  It's like the buying audience is always looking to purchase the latest and greatest, even if it doesn't sound any better (or in many cases worse) than earlier product offerings.

I'm not sure where this begins - whether with the companies or with the customers - but there definitely is a "feed the monster" type craving for endless new products. It is an obsession, and one that ultimately harms music, because the infatuation is more materialistic than artistic.  We must have something new; now we must have something more that is new; O give us still more that is new - more, more and more.  The end result is that we're given just what we're demanding, but at the expense of retiring the older instruments. 

For those of us who want nothing to do with this cycle, the whole affair is a nightmare, because the instruments we have and love are the ones that must be retired in order to make room for the new.  And then the parts become scarce and we're in a bind not of our own making. 

I would like nothing more than for Sequential to be able to maintain my Poly Evolvers well into the future.  New instruments for me?  No way; I'm still busy with the old.  I'll never exhaust my eight-voice PEK, and it will never exhaust me.  But the monster must be fed and the old must be abandoned merely for the new.  And in the midst of this, does synthesizer music really make progress?  Does it result in greater beauty, power, and brilliance in artistic expression?  Well, it certainly results in more YouTube demonstrations.  I mean, who doesn't want to hear another cut off frequency being opened?

There's something very unhealthy about this relentless cycle.

I do think there has to be some type of progression with instruments and innovation. Better processors, more memory, more features, a different sound pallet etc. But my concern is the rapid rate at which this happens. Guitar companies are notorious for this. They release and discontinue a new line of instruments each year.

Personally I'd like to see instruments at least have a 10 year lifespan in terms of release and retirement. Not just quickly rushed out behind the woodshed within 1-2 years simply "because".

I was going to get a Prophet XL next year...but I don't think that will happen now sadly.

One way of looking at it is, how many samplers out there have an analog filter?  So if the Prophet X/XL has the sound you want (badly enough to have two of them), then by all means, I'd say get one now before they are gone.  That was my approach to the Prophet 12 module, the keyboard was discontinued and the module seemed a gem, so I saw my chance to get a late-serial number, brand new with warranty P12 as an opportunity.  Expensive?  Sure, but who knows, Dave might retire before ever doing a proper successor to the Prophet 12m.  It's this little space-heater of a synth with a certain charm that will never again be exactly recreated.  The Prophet X/XL may be the same.. Dave is a legend of electronic instruments, when the day comes that he retires, new products might carry the Sequential name, but they won't be from Dave.  This is exactly what happened to Moog.  So Dave's creations might be worth a lot more than they are today.  It just comes down to what sound you want.

Prophet 10, Prophet 6, OB-6, Prophet 12m, Prophet Rev2-16, Toraiz AS-1, Moog SlimPhatty, Hydrasynth desktop, Korg Minilogue XDm, Roland SPD-30, Roland SPD-SX Special Edition, Roland KT-10, Maschine, Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen + Octopre, Strymon Pedals, Cubase Pro 11.

LPF83

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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2021, 05:57:56 PM »
One thing I have noticed over the decades is that synth buyers tend to be sort of a fickle audience.  The same reasons that make the GAS phenomenon so common, are the same reasons that most synthesizer offerings seem to see their sales fizzle out after a few years.  It's like the buying audience is always looking to purchase the latest and greatest, even if it doesn't sound any better (or in many cases worse) than earlier product offerings.

I'm not sure where this begins - whether with the companies or with the customers - but there definitely is a "feed the monster" type craving for endless new products. It is an obsession, and one that ultimately harms music, because the infatuation is more materialistic than artistic.  We must have something new; now we must have something more that is new; O give us still more that is new - more, more and more.  The end result is that we're given just what we're demanding, but at the expense of retiring the older instruments. 

For those of us who want nothing to do with this cycle, the whole affair is a nightmare, because the instruments we have and love are the ones that must be retired in order to make room for the new.  And then the parts become scarce and we're in a bind not of our own making. 

I would like nothing more than for Sequential to be able to maintain my Poly Evolvers well into the future.  New instruments for me?  No way; I'm still busy with the old.  I'll never exhaust my eight-voice PEK, and it will never exhaust me.  But the monster must be fed and the old must be abandoned merely for the new.  And in the midst of this, does synthesizer music really make progress?  Does it result in greater beauty, power, and brilliance in artistic expression?  Well, it certainly results in more YouTube demonstrations.  I mean, who doesn't want to hear another cut off frequency being opened?

There's something very unhealthy about this relentless cycle.

Us in the synth community are sort of caught in the middle between music and technology.  The creation of good music or even just pleasant sound is really independent of technological advancements.  The first "toy" I remember wanting with passion as a toddler, walking through a toy store and jumping up and down at a little before age 5, and pointing to indicate to my parents what I want for Christmas, was a toy drum set.  If I back up in time about a year, and supplement my memory with home movie clips, I also had a fascination with a toy robot I got around the age of 3 1/2.  It was around that formative time I remember hearing "Frankenstein" by Edgar Winter playing on the radio, and becoming aware of this merging of music and technology...  being fascinated by all the weird sounds I heard and the fact that it was noise woven into sort of an elusive leitmotiv (of course I didn't know what a leitmotiv at that age, but the concept grabbed me).

So at some point, I decided to embrace technology (specifically software engineering) as the place I wanted to earn my paycheck, and music creation as the place where my heart really was..  But they are not mutually exclusive.  Like most people on this forum, I have a strong interest in both music and technology.

My point to all this is, there is a technological side to things (corporations pushing themselves to innovate in order to interest new buyers enough to keep fertilizing the soil) and then there is a musical side to things (the technology plays a back seat to the quality of the sounds coming out of the instrument, which are often a factor of the players familiarity with said instrument).   So in the world of synthesis, it seems music and technology are hopelessly intertwined, and yet at odds with each other!... 
....One mans opinion, at least..  Not necessarily the right one :)
Prophet 10, Prophet 6, OB-6, Prophet 12m, Prophet Rev2-16, Toraiz AS-1, Moog SlimPhatty, Hydrasynth desktop, Korg Minilogue XDm, Roland SPD-30, Roland SPD-SX Special Edition, Roland KT-10, Maschine, Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen + Octopre, Strymon Pedals, Cubase Pro 11.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2021, 08:36:41 PM »
Got a messaged back from Sequential. They are discontinuing the Prophet XL.

This makes me feel even more so that Focusrite has assigned Sequential as “analog only” and Novation as Wavetable/FM/Samples based and should the two ever meet it will be under both banners.

The fact the PXL is retired before older instruments like the P6, OB6 and REV2 (all analog synths) speaks volumes.

I say the PX itself will be off of the roster by the end of next year with no firmware updates.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2021, 03:28:27 AM »
Got a messaged back from Sequential. They are discontinuing the Prophet XL.

This makes me feel even more so that Focusrite has assigned Sequential as “analog only” and Novation as Wavetable/FM/Samples based and should the two ever meet it will be under both banners.

The fact the PXL is retired before older instruments like the P6, OB6 and REV2 (all analog synths) speaks volumes.

I say the PX itself will be off of the roster by the end of next year with no firmware updates.

Or maybe they’re just discontinuing the stuff that doesn’t sell well; P6 and OB-6 are still selling well.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2021, 08:33:03 AM »
Got a messaged back from Sequential. They are discontinuing the Prophet XL.

This makes me feel even more so that Focusrite has assigned Sequential as “analog only” and Novation as Wavetable/FM/Samples based and should the two ever meet it will be under both banners.

The fact the PXL is retired before older instruments like the P6, OB6 and REV2 (all analog synths) speaks volumes.

I say the PX itself will be off of the roster by the end of next year with no firmware updates.

Or maybe they’re just discontinuing the stuff that doesn’t sell well; P6 and OB-6 are still selling well.

Sad but this might also be the case. It's officially abandonware at this point.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2021, 09:46:37 AM by LoboLives »

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2021, 02:44:26 PM »
I wouldn't be surprised by any of this.  Dave is known for his analog instruments, and that's why people turn to him.  His tangents into digital are just that - hybrids or parts of a sound engine.  And I 'm glad to see any of his instruments remaining in production.  The Prophet-6 was chronologically next in line for the chopping block.  That it's still being manufactured is a rare good thing.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2021, 03:26:41 PM by Sacred Synthesis »
"Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!"

- Henry David Thoreau

The Musical Synthesizer YouTube Channel:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChLGwGiRVs7rlZXnOG9_mUw

The Musical Synthesizer Blog: https://themusicalsynthesizer.wordpress.com

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2021, 02:47:04 PM »
Got a messaged back from Sequential. They are discontinuing the Prophet XL.

This makes me feel even more so that Focusrite has assigned Sequential as “analog only” and Novation as Wavetable/FM/Samples based and should the two ever meet it will be under both banners.

The fact the PXL is retired before older instruments like the P6, OB6 and REV2 (all analog synths) speaks volumes.

I say the PX itself will be off of the roster by the end of next year with no firmware updates.
Or maybe they’re just discontinuing the stuff that doesn’t sell well; P6 and OB-6 are still selling well.

Sad but this might also be the case. It's officially abandonware at this point.

It is a shame. I didn’t play around with the internal engine but I recently used a PXL as a controller for an OB6, what a lovely keybed, I’d love to see them put this on a Poly Pro3 (though C-C).
« Last Edit: October 23, 2021, 02:49:46 PM by Quatschmacher »

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2021, 05:24:08 PM »
I think the Prophet 12's place most needs to be filled.  It was the instrument that should have remained a DSI/Sequential standard, an instrument that could do just about anything.  It stands out among all the others for its complexity.
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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #17 on: October 24, 2021, 10:10:33 AM »
I think the Prophet 12's place most needs to be filled.  It was the instrument that should have remained a DSI/Sequential standard, an instrument that could do just about anything.  It stands out among all the others for its complexity.

The partnership with Novation might complicate that given the Summit.

Re: Analog only?
« Reply #18 on: October 24, 2021, 10:20:40 AM »
I wouldn't be surprised by any of this.  Dave is known for his analog instruments, and that's why people turn to him.  His tangents into digital are just that - hybrids or parts of a sound engine.  And I 'm glad to see any of his instruments remaining in production.  The Prophet-6 was chronologically next in line for the chopping block.  That it's still being manufactured is a rare good thing.

The release of the OBX reissue might change that. The P6 and OB6 might be next to go seeing as actual Prophet 5s and OBXs are now being manufactured. Given the significant price difference of the Take 5 and Prophet 6/OB6 then the small differences in features/size might render the P6/OB6 pointless. Especially if they end up making an OB5 in the Take 5 form factor and price.

Dave is a big fan of digital oscillators going through analog filters but as I said them doing a synth with digital or even FPGA oscillators running into an analog filter might stamped out before it's even started as it would be seen as competition to the Summit.

LPF83

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Re: Analog only?
« Reply #19 on: October 24, 2021, 10:39:27 AM »
I think the Prophet 12's place most needs to be filled.  It was the instrument that should have remained a DSI/Sequential standard, an instrument that could do just about anything.  It stands out among all the others for its complexity.

The partnership with Novation might complicate that given the Summit.

The notion that Focusrite could require Dave to stay in his lane creatively is a believable one, but I personally don't think it will happen.  Remember that Focusrite was Rupert Neve's company... another creative visionary like Dave Smith.  This means the pedigree of the company is one founded on creative thinking and innovation.  The syndrome you're referring to, which happens to many corporations, is in my experience more prone to occur in organizations where there isn't enough of an awareness, value, or emphasis on creative thinking.  There are many industries (finance or defense for example) where the undercurrent is very analytical, and they really aren't keeping an eye out for the free-spirted entrepreneural type (they might have R&D divisions which do this to some extent, but the overall organization and bias of the CEO is not in this direction).  Some industries like the music industry, in contrast, are all about creativity.

I don't think Focusrite bought Sequential because they are a money-making powerhouse.  They bought it because Dave Smith is a legend in his field, just as Rupert Neve was, and the opportunity to add such a well-regarded instrument brand to their brand portfolio doesn't come along every day (in this case maybe once in a lifetime).   So with that in mind, I have to believe that the same type of people who are aware of what makes Sequential great are going to be the last people to try to stifle Dave's train of thought and say "hey, don't get too creative in THAT area, we need you to crank out more widgets of type X".

That said I have noticed something in Dave's personality over the years.  Listening to him and watching his facial expressions in interviews, I think he deeply cares how well his product designs are received.  It's not just a business thing with him, it seems to bother him on a personal level when some percentage of the target audience doesn't like his product.  Because of that, I think that this is undercurrent of caring what others think that has played a strong role in his product designs, even during times when he was completely in charge of all design direction decisions.  And it is more for this reason than anything else, that he is somewhat aware that right now he's doing analog polys better than anyone else, and so he is more likely to be biased in that direction than to take the risk of introducing something that doesn't go so well, as he did in his younger days.

My other rationale for believing that the Focusrite deal involved some strong creative freedom clauses in Dave's favor is what I learned about how he thinks when handling legal matters when I read "The Prophet from Silicon Valley" -- he is actually very savvy and I'm fairly sure that he would not sign any acquisition paperwork that didn't give him full creative freedom regarding what types of synths to design.  The only way I could see him NOT doing this is if the acquisition was really a golden parachute strategy for him, and he wasn't really serious about designing synths for more than a couple more years anyway (not totally unrealistic since he's in his 70's now).



Prophet 10, Prophet 6, OB-6, Prophet 12m, Prophet Rev2-16, Toraiz AS-1, Moog SlimPhatty, Hydrasynth desktop, Korg Minilogue XDm, Roland SPD-30, Roland SPD-SX Special Edition, Roland KT-10, Maschine, Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen + Octopre, Strymon Pedals, Cubase Pro 11.