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anyone else underwhelmed with modern poly synths? Keyboard Synthesizers
Old 2nd January 2017
  #541
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Westlaker's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kurzweil View Post
An OB8 is great if you are a collector
It's also great if you love a thick, rich, warm analog tone.
Old 2nd January 2017
  #542
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Quantum7's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
Dude in 20 years iPhones will go for $5k on EBay to capture the 2016 sound
Quote:
Originally Posted by CfNorENa View Post
It's also great if you love a thick, rich, warm analog tone.
If only we could know the future. My band-mate offered me his OB8 for around $500 back around 1999 or 2000 and I just laughed and said "no thanks" as I smugly went back to my Kurzweil K2600. D'oh!!!!!!
Old 2nd January 2017
  #543
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fadein's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quantum7 View Post
If only we could know the future. My band-mate offered me his OB8 for around $500 back around 1999 or 2000 and I just laughed and said "no thanks" as I smugly went back to my Kurzweil K2600. D'oh!!!!!!
I feel you! I got Ensoniq EPS 16+ in 1991 and simply dumped those two

Old 2nd January 2017
  #544
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Quantum7's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by fadein View Post
I feel you! I got Ensoniq EPS 16+ in 1991 and simply dumped those two

Вы живете, и вы узнаете!
Old 2nd January 2017
  #545
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I'm not going to pretend that the old analog polys aren't incredible. I think that things like an ob8 and cs/80 or. Jupiter 8 are well deserved in their admiration
But I will say the last 12 months has been some of the best synths we've seen in a long time. I'm not here to say which is better but we should collectively be optimistic and overwhelmed about the modern stuff out and coming - we are at least in the ball park of great products. I really love the OB6 and the system 8 is surprisingly convincing
Old 2nd January 2017
  #546
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fadein's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quantum7 View Post
Вы живете, и вы узнаете!
Better late than never, indeed. Some DIY mods were exceptional, but I don't really want the originals. Not really
Old 2nd January 2017
  #547
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Quantum7's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankenstino View Post
I'm not going to pretend that the old analog polys aren't incredible. I think that things like an and cs/80 or. are well deserved in their admiration
But I will say the last 12 months has been some of the best synths we've seen in a long time. I'm not here to say which is better but we should collectively be optimistic and overwhelmed about the modern stuff out and coming - we are at least in the ball park of great products. I really love the and the system 8 is surprisingly convincing
My 3 favorite synth purchases of 2016 were my OB6, System 8, and Voyager. As soon as I get my new studio built ( My 2016 Boise, Idaho new home studio build ) and can actually play them all together, I will be in synth-heaven!

Last edited by Quantum7; 2nd January 2017 at 10:35 PM..
Old 2nd January 2017
  #548
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quantum7 View Post
Вы живете, и вы узнаете!
I had to Google that one!
Old 2nd January 2017
  #549
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synthguy's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by frankenstino View Post
I'm not going to pretend that the old analog polys aren't incredible. I think that things like an ob8 and cs/80 or. Jupiter 8 are well deserved in their admiration
But I will say the last 12 months has been some of the best synths we've seen in a long time. I'm not here to say which is better but we should collectively be optimistic and overwhelmed about the modern stuff out and coming - we are at least in the ball park of great products. I really love the OB6 and the system 8 is surprisingly convincing
Best attitude.

But I would say that synth wise, we on the same park bench. Even the rompler section of the Kronos is in the same ballpark. I know that's heresy around here - run those filthy rompler bastids outta town, I tell ya! - but I've seen positive comments about a synth sound, and turns out it's made by a Triton or something. And need I remind anyone of the video where someone copies patches on an OB8 with a Prophet '08? Do they sound identical? No, but within some ranges, they're hard to distinguish.

I feel the need to keep reminding people that it's not the synth, it's the captain at the helm. A real programmer can make almost anything work. The people I did work for weren't half deaf, but they loved what I did with whatever we had, and for a good long while, they were romplers. Then VAs, and finally analogs again. We didn't wait around for some vintage beauty to fall into my lap. Instead, I learned those keyboards, I worked them, and did some darn good tracks with them. Have a holy relic synth? Stupendous, we're jealous. But if you don't, make it a challenge to use what's in your toolkit anyhow, even if it's to try copying some vintage dreamsynth.

Don't listen to the cool kids here. Except me. Use whatever you have, cut tracks and don't look back.
Old 2nd January 2017
  #550
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Quote:
Originally Posted by synthguy View Post
And need I remind anyone of the video where someone copies patches on an OB8 with a Prophet '08? Do they sound identical? No, but within some ranges, they're hard to distinguish
Old 3rd January 2017
  #551
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Stingrays's Avatar
There are only two modern analog polysynths that make me delight:Studio Electronics Code 8 and DSI OB-6.
In my opinion, they have taken the best from the past and have a lot of opportunities.
And yes ...they sound great!
Old 3rd January 2017
  #552
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After tasting the power of the mod matrix on a Blofeld synth,and its deep programming,
I think i have set the bar high for a polysynth. Having said that, I am amazed by the
magic of VCOs, and I reserve the right to change my mind at any particular moment!
Also, I find -64 to 63 as choices (7 bits) most bogus, and I really like the synths with
continuous variable analog controls.....So, I am conflicted between the light side
and the dark side...May the Quantization Be With You!
Old 3rd January 2017
  #553
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robot gigante's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by synthguy View Post
Best attitude.

But I would say that synth wise, we on the same park bench. Even the rompler section of the Kronos is in the same ballpark. I know that's heresy around here - run those filthy rompler bastids outta town, I tell ya! - but I've seen positive comments about a synth sound, and turns out it's made by a Triton or something. And need I remind anyone of the video where someone copies patches on an OB8 with a Prophet '08? Do they sound identical? No, but within some ranges, they're hard to distinguish.

I feel the need to keep reminding people that it's not the synth, it's the captain at the helm. A real programmer can make almost anything work. The people I did work for weren't half deaf, but they loved what I did with whatever we had, and for a good long while, they were romplers. Then VAs, and finally analogs again. We didn't wait around for some vintage beauty to fall into my lap. Instead, I learned those keyboards, I worked them, and did some darn good tracks with them. Have a holy relic synth? Stupendous, we're jealous. But if you don't, make it a challenge to use what's in your toolkit anyhow, even if it's to try copying some vintage dreamsynth.

Don't listen to the cool kids here. Except me. Use whatever you have, cut tracks and don't look back.
The ironic thing is, I remember a time when these now sought-after classics took a real beating from the people sold on... ROMplers! When VA's came out it was like, old analog synths? Meh, I want that new Nord. Hence the low prices at the time.

Payback. That's how I like to think of it.

OK not really, ROMplers get a lot of love from many if not most of us here.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #554
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enossified's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by coffee View Post
Well, it's everywhere today. Things were better when people were young (no, it's not delusional) so let's make things like they used to be. I want more transistors and tubes and tape! Let's kick those computer nerds out of Silicon Valley and start a new Radio Tube factory instead!
I'm old enough to remember when the TV repairman came to your house a few times a year, swapping out tubes and tweaking the circuits to get it working again, charging labor by the hour. Sometimes you needed a new picture tube, too...$$$$$$$$$$$$

I won't bother to go into why discrete transistors and tape also had drawbacks compared to op amps and digital recording.

It may not be delusional but it's not like everything was better.

Some things got better, some things got worse. Your TV doesn't stop working twice a year any more but when it does you either take it to a shop to replace the motherboard and/or display for a fixed price or you just throw it away and buy a new one because that's cheaper.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mutantt View Post
1. All 6 voices behave exactly the same
This is an interesting statement. If you take the extreme case, like an Oberheimn 8 voice or a Vermona Perfourmer there's pros and cons to having each voice be totally independent.

Even in a modern analog poly each voice different. They may share common modulators, but they do not share audio circuits. The DSI Poly Evolver has two Curtis chip analog low pass filters in parallel per voice and each voice is true stereo. If you pan the voice to mono you can easily hear the phasing of the two filters.

Quote:
2. Just 6 voices instead of 8 like on so many legendary poly vintages.
Not all vintage analog polys were 8 voice anyway. Besides, why stop at 8?

Quote:
3. Just 1 global LFO when i need at least 2 per voice.
in 2016 there is no excuse to not have at least 2 when for example the 28 years old ESQ-80 had 4.
You can't have it both ways. The old stuff had only one, so lack of more LFOs cannot what makes the new ones sound bad. Adding modulators is easy if they are digital. The Prophet 08 has four LFOs, three EGs and a step sequencer that can be used as a mod source.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphod Betamax View Post
I find -64 to 63 as choices (7 bits) most bogus, and I really like the synths with
continuous variable analog controls.
It goes both ways.

On analogs that have no digital control of the parameters it's sometimes impossible to get controls precisely where you need them. For instance, with a bipolar mod depth control it may be impossible to dial in 0.

I have owned many synths where as soon as I let go of the knob, the value changes slightly. With extreme/complex modulations this can totally change the sound.

On the DSI Evolver, the programming steps let you set the delay line, filters and LFOs to precise semitone values (I assume Prophet 08 is the same?). For certain types of patches that is very useful.

BTW the Evolver has greater than 7 bit resolution on many parameters...it's just a design choice. The control resolution on any vintage polysynth with MIDI will be 7 bits or less, anyway.

Last edited by enossified; 3rd January 2017 at 03:40 PM..
Old 3rd January 2017
  #555
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Guest
Curious, this is internal control of a parameter.
If you control it via midi, is the resolution quantized to 7 bit,
or is some sort of NRPN?


Quote:
Originally Posted by enossified View Post
BTW the Evolver has greater than 7 bit resolution on many parameters...it's just a design choice. The control resolution on any vintage polysynth with MIDI will be 7 bits or less, anyway.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #556
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enossified View Post
This is an interesting statement. If you take the extreme case, like an Oberheimn 8 voice or a Vermona Perfourmer there's pros and cons to having each voice be totally independent.
We explored this topic in the main OB-6 thread, as an example sound we took the (in)famous high resonance sweep by Rush.
OB-6 in unison behaved like a slightly fatter single voice, while we all remember that the OB-X set to the same values makes an EPIC multi sweep that almost sounds like there is some kind of delay on it, while there is no delay at all.
I even linked to an article on some other synth related site that talked about this feature/flaw of OB-X.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #557
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login's Avatar
Arguing about subjective taste, this could go on for centuries.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #558
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enossified's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphod Betamax View Post
Curious, this is internal control of a parameter.
If you control it via midi, is the resolution quantized to 7 bit,
or is some sort of NRPN?
It's more old school than that...sysex! Just like a Juno 106.

Some parameters can optionally be controlled by incoming CCs which then are scaled to fit the full range.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #559
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enossified's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by login View Post
Arguing about subjective taste, this could go on for centuries.
It already has, we had threads like this back in the 20th century didn't we?
Old 3rd January 2017
  #560
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Stingrays's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by enossified View Post
It already has, we had threads like this back in the 20th century didn't we?
Yes! Everything changes in this world.
But the topics in the Gearslutz are the same.
Old 3rd January 2017
  #561
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Quote:
Originally Posted by login View Post
Arguing about subjective taste, this could go on for centuries.
It already has that's human evolution, people have been writing and debating on religion and love and other topics for millennia - as they say the more things change the more they actually stay the same
Old 5th January 2017
  #562
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Guest
What we need is a 50+ version of GS, so us old geezers
can relive the 80's together!
Old 5th January 2017
  #563
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fadein's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zaphod Betamax View Post
What we need is a 50+ version of GS, so us old geezers
can relive the 80's together!
I'm in!
Old 5th January 2017
  #564
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Soothing Sound's Avatar
A lot of musicians see music and their tools as an arrow that moves forward.

Most started a long time ago, with crappy conditions, buggy computers and limited functions. It makes sense, really.

If I was asked to make a graphics job with a C64, I would cringe.

They sorta feel their studio has an edge, after all it's their business, it's more important to recall a session than the vintage vibe.

Now if we remove the job part from music, everything is possible, you can use the most crazy and weirdest tools, the goal is just joy and pure experimentation. If you are selling a lot of music like BoC or Legowelt, because of the vintage vibe from all those cheesy machines, then continue, there's nothing new that can match that sound 100%.
Old 5th January 2017
  #565
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fadein's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soothing Sound View Post
Now if we remove the job part from music, everything is possible, you can use the most crazy and weirdest tools, the goal is just joy and pure experimentation.
Amen to that. That's exactly what people always did, when they were moving forward.
Old 10th January 2017
  #566
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Quote:
Originally Posted by synthguy View Post
Best attitude.

I feel the need to keep reminding people that it's not the synth, it's the captain at the helm. A real programmer can make almost anything work.
Yes, if I was 16 again now, I'd be working 100% in the box with free or cheap VSTs, never mind synths costing $100s.
Old 10th January 2017
  #567
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ionian View Post
I'll go with huge size, non-sensitive keyboard, but really, limited synthesis potential compared to a modern instrument?

There are many things an OB8 is. Limited isn't one of them.
I have used an OB8, and it was very big and very expensive-sounding, but I would compare that list of (I think rather esoteric) functions that you can tweak on the OB8 with the modulation source/destination list of the humble DM12. Modern instruments are becoming increasingly more sonically versatile than their vintage predecessors, with many more functions and expressive potential.

So now I've convinced you to sell your OB8, you can sell it to me or I'll exchange for a lovely K2000
Old 11th January 2017
  #568
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kurzweil View Post
I have used an OB8, and it was very big and very expensive-sounding, but I would compare that list of (I think rather esoteric) functions that you can tweak on the OB8 with the modulation source/destination list of the humble DM12. Modern instruments are becoming increasingly more sonically versatile than their vintage predecessors, with many more functions and expressive potential.
Agree 100% - the ability of newer gear to be played expressively (either form the synth itself or via MIDI) is amazing. However, for me, if the core sound of the unit (raw oscillators, filter and VCA) doesn't agree with me, I've found all the modulations/effects in the world don't make it better.

A combination of a great sounding core with an expressive interface is a true joy to own and play.
Old 11th January 2017
  #569
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Most vintage polys are underwhelming -the jupiter 8 is a real let down. So to the ob8. They are not some magical synth god machines. I'd take a combo of ap6 ob6 modules and a deep mind 12over a lot of vintage polys any day of the week.
For 5-10k spending..... there's a ton of great polys and synths to get: ob6, p6, p12, Juno 6, ploysix, maybe a p08 module, a waldorf q. This where I'd spend.
Old 11th January 2017
  #570
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orwell View Post
Most vintage polys are underwhelming -the jupiter 8 is a real let down. So to the ob8. They are not some magical synth god machines. I'd take a combo of ap6 ob6 modules and a deep mind 12over a lot of vintage polys any day of the week.
For 5-10k spending..... there's a ton of great polys and synths to get: ob6, p6, p12, Juno 6, polysix, maybe a p08 module, a waldorf q. This where I'd spend.
That's the beauty of having so many choices each with a different personality.
I've owned the P08, Q (+ Phoenix), PolySix, JP-8, Juno 6/60/106, P-12, and OB8 from your list above and of them all, the only one I've kept has been the JP-8.

Your go-to synth will be different than mine and that's OK. Feel fortunate if you've had the chance to play a bunch of different ones so you can decide for yourself what works best.

If you slag off the old stuff (or new stuff) without actually spending hands-on time with them then that's not so cool.

Hearing a synth is different than playing a synth.
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