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SCI Prophet-T8 - the most underrated synthesizer in the world?
Old 17th May 2018
  #31
Gear Guru
 
EvilDragon's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Too expensive for just a controller.
Old 17th May 2018
  #32
Gear Addict
 
🎧 5 years
But it makes noises too! Unlike the KX88, which was my other favourite back then.
Old 31st May 2018 | Show parent
  #33
Gear Maniac
 
whinylittlerunt's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I like my T8.

I keep saying someday I'll get a Prophet 5 to replace it, but I think that's just silly. Considering I'm more of a hands-on player, having the weighted action along with 8 voices definitely outweighs any tonal discrepancies...
Old 31st May 2018
  #34
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
i generally hate weighted keys but I love them on the T8. Lovely synth. I wouldn't call it the most underrated synth in the world, but it's definitely a special one.
mini
Old 18th June 2018
  #35
Lives for gear
 
Firechild's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Here is a another brand new T8 track.
Old 22nd June 2018 | Show parent
  #36
Lives for gear
 
roginator's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Synclavier VPK have same keyboatd as T8...have few VPK, also i played T8 few times ..I like sound a lot . Technically audio path is same as p600 but it sounda bit different...just dunno why.
Old 22nd June 2018 | Show parent
  #37
Lives for gear
 
Quantum7's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firechild View Post
Here is a another brand new T8 track.
Man, I never realized what a brilliant sound the T8 has. I like it better than the P5. How is the keyboard action on that puppy?
Old 22nd June 2018 | Show parent
  #38
Lives for gear
 
Firechild's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quantum7 View Post
Man, I never realized what a brilliant sound the T8 has. I like it better than the P5. How is the keyboard action on that puppy?
The best there is. It is between a new Steinway Grand Piano and weighted Synthkeys. Better than CS80, way better than Rhodes Chroma. Both Velocity and Aftertouch are just perfect. I use the T8 as my MIDI masterkeyboard. I bought one for spare as well and if I want to play in DUAL mode with 8 voices available
The sound is majestic with grace. Sure you can hear the envelopes are software if you try to find the weak spots like the release tail can die out a bit abrupt but add a little reverb and you wont notice. Despite the myth the T8 sounds like a P600 it does not. The P600 has only one Z80 CPU for all tasks the T8 has both the Z80 and an additional 16bit Z8002 CPU for LFO and Envelope duties making the sweeps perfectly smooth and free of stepping. Also pretty snappy attacks as well. Not like the Xpander/M12.
At the moment, my favorite synth.
Old 16th July 2018
  #39
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 5 years
I have my T8 for sale on eBay, if anyone here is looking for one. It was just serviced at Wine Country Sequential.
Rare Sequential Circuits Prophet T8 Analog 8-voice Synthesizer Poly-aftertouch | eBay

This beautiful Prophet T8 has just been serviced by David Sesnak at Wine Country Sequential and is fully functional, running the latest OS version 3.8. It has been in my smoke-free studio for many years. Will ship in the same well-padded box that Wine Country sent it in. Comes with original manual and dual foot pedal. Cosmetically in good condition - the wood is in good shape save for one noticeable scratch on the right wood cheek, and some scratches on the metal top cover (see photos).

Sequential Circuits introduced the T8 in 1983 as its flagship synth. It was Sequential's answer to the CS-80, and is well-known for its excellent hammer-action keyboard that offers polyphonic aftertouch, attack and release velocity. It was so well-designed that the same keyboard was incorporated into the Synclavier II, one of the most high-end synthesizers ever made. The T8 was used by many artists such as Howard Jones, Joe Zawinul, Jerry Goldsmith, Suzanne Ciani, The Fixx, Talking Heads, Huey Lewis and the News, Billy Currie/Ultravox, Ralph Grierson and many others.

One little-known fact about the T8 is that starting with OS v3.5, it can be switched to act as an MPE / Channel-Per-Note controller (MIDI Mode 4), which basically means you can control MPE-compatible synths with per-note aftertouch. It is like polyphonic aftertouch (but only for MPE / channel-per-note compatible synths or multitimbral synths that can receive aftertouch on 8 separate channels)

Last edited by synthfanatic; 21st August 2018 at 07:32 PM..
Old 30th July 2018 | Show parent
  #40
Here for the gear
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tommym View Post
Prophet 10 was said to be unreliable.
Don't believe everything that's "said." I gigged with a P10 for 3 years, and the only issue I had was when a wire for a custom mod (that permitted the pitch wheel to go a full octave) came loose from one of its solder joints. Opened it up, and the wire end hung right where it needed to be re-soldered. 5 minutes work and it was functioning, never to fail again.

And this was after it slipped down 20 steps in its case, slid across the concrete floor, and hit a wall backstage at a gig.

Damn thing was near indestructible in my case. Sorry I ever sold it. (But I don't really miss hauling it to gigs and picking it up several times a night...)

..Joe
Old 31st July 2018 | Show parent
  #41
Lives for gear
 
maisonvague's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
For me, the main appeal of the T8 would be the keyboard. Having a piano action on a synth would be nice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Gerardi View Post
Don't believe everything that's "said."
Indeed. My P-10 is still going strong.

(Knock on wood. Sacrifice a Minibrute. Don't want to upset the Synth Gods.)
Old 31st July 2018 | Show parent
  #42
Gear Maniac
 
toobdude's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
T8 keyboard

I posted this in another thread about the T8 keyboard. Someone here might find it interesting so I am re-posting here.


Quote:
Originally Posted by toobdude View Post
Yeah it sounds great!! It is classic analog. Dave Smith style.

What sets it apart from everything else except maybe the Rhodes Chroma (but they have different feels to their keyboards) is how it plays and thus HOW YOU APPROACH IT AS A SYNTH.

It is a really big synth - 76 keys and the PLENTY of space between the knobs -- it is a real instrument.

We will never see a synth built like this again - ever.

I recently restored the keybed of my T8. It is just a beautiful design. It has balance rail real wooden keys that strike another hinged wooden "hammer" to which this opaque plastic "flag" is attached. This flag .... well "flags" between 2 optical sensors. This is for the velocity attack AND velocity release. Then under each key is a pressure sensitive resistor which is what transmits the polyphonic key aftertouch. There is a little spring that adds resistance and return to the "flag/hammer" piece. This is what wears out and breaks. You can get replacement springs. I had to fiddle with the whole keybed mechanism to get everything even and smooth but .... now it is exceptional.

I was so impressed when I was done that I wrote Dave Sesnik at Wine Country to ask him about the keybed. This is what he wrote back to me:

"Thanks for your email and interest. The Prophet-T8 keyboard & action was built by Pratt-Read in their South Carolina plant, and outfitted with electronics at Sequential Circuits in San Jose. The Prophet-T8 keyboard's action evolved from the ARP electric piano originally designed by the late Phil Dodds. The Prophet-T8 prototype was developed in late 1981 and first displayed by Sequential Circuits during the Anaheim NAMM show in January of 1982. The housing's height was taller, and the action was separated from the keybed and mounted above like the ARP Electric Piano action. It was a 73 note E-to-E keyboard using magnets & Hall Effect sensors to measure velocity and trigger notes, and is pictured in the first Prophet-T8 brochure which can be seen on our web page at http://winecountrysequential.com/pdf/t8.pdf.

The Prophet-T8's keyboard final design evolved in 1982 to include 76-notes (A-to-C) with optical sensing, pressure sensors, and keyboard action all contained in one complete & compact keyboard module. This compact design allowed for a reduction in the height of the Prophet-T8's housing by about 20%. This same 76-note keyboard module was sold as an OEM item to New England Digital for installation into NED's Synclavier. In 1981 I was Sequential Circuits' mechanical engineer responsible for the Prophet-T8 housing & keyboard design, as well as selling OEM T8 keyboard modules to NED in White River Junction Vermont in 1984.

As a side note.. in 1977 Phil Dodds appeared in Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind, operating the ARP 2500 keyboard used to communicate with the Aliens."

Kind regards,
David Sesnak
WCP Inc.








Joe Zawinul used one his whole career once it came out. If you have not seen this, you can watch him play the T8 at home in this rehearsal film documentary.

Old 22nd August 2018 | Show parent
  #43
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manalishi's Avatar
If you want a T8, here's one from a much-missed rocker's estate: RONNIE JAMES DIO SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS PROPHET T8 SYNTHESIZER - Price Estimate: $5000 - $7000
Old 23rd August 2018 | Show parent
  #44
Lives for gear
 
_ADSR_'s Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by manalishi View Post
If you want a T8, here's one from a much-missed rocker's estate: RONNIE JAMES DIO SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS PROPHET T8 SYNTHESIZER - Price Estimate: $5000 - $7000
I bet I have pieces of that T8 still stuck in my eye. Saw him in Kazoo back in the 80's and at the end of the keyboard solo -it blew up.

Bad pyro cuz everyone right in front was wounded in some way or another.

Of course, I'm assuming all of this due to the condition only. Pure speculation.

But I'm betting...
Old 23rd August 2018 | Show parent
  #45
Deleted cec0d5b
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by manalishi View Post
If you want a T8, here's one from a much-missed rocker's estate: RONNIE JAMES DIO SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS PROPHET T8 SYNTHESIZER - Price Estimate: $5000 - $7000
Sheezus. That's had a hard life!
Old 23rd August 2018 | Show parent
  #46
Lives for gear
 
jazzcabbage's Avatar
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deleted cec0d5b View Post
Sheezus. That's had a hard life!
Ronnie probably kept it out in the shed next to his lawnmower since the 80’s
Old 22nd November 2020
  #47
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
Old thread but can anyone who's complaining of the T8's software-based LFO/Env actually post an example where this is audible?

As to the Osc and Filter chips: I see the T8 has the same VCO chip as the OB-8, Jupiter-6, Memorymoog, OB-Xa, and same filter as the Matrix-12. So the worst you could say about the T8's chips might be that it sounds a bit more like an Oberheim, that's not the worst insult in the world!
Old 22nd November 2020 | Show parent
  #48
Lives for gear
 
Rob Ocelot's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Swiss Frank View Post
Old thread but can anyone who's complaining of the T8's software-based LFO/Env actually post an example where this is audible
Nothing wrong with software envelopes per se, but a lot of people rag on Sequential for using the same microprocessor and software envelopes in both a budget and a premium product. What they don't understand is that while the Z-80 was a fairly medium speed CPU at the time the T-8 had a second Z-80 running just the software envelopes. The Prophet-600's lone Z-80 had to deal with everything and here's where the software envelopes show their warts -- and why the Gligli P-600 upgrade is so significant. Most of the T-8 criticisms come from people who only looked at the spec sheets of both synths and assumed a T-8 was exactly the same as a P-600 under the hood except for two extra voices and a fancy keyboard.

Quote:
As to the Osc and Filter chips: I see the T8 has the same VCO chip as the OB-8, Jupiter-6, Memorymoog, OB-Xa, and same filter as the Matrix-12. So the worst you could say about the T8's chips might be that it sounds a bit more like an Oberheim, that's not the worst insult in the world!
As I said above, spec sheets only tell you part of the story. The same VCO and filter chips do not necessarily make one synth sound like another. The Chroma Polaris has the exact same VCO and filter chips as the Matrix-12 and Xpander so it should sound more like an Oberheim, right? Nope, not even close.

It's not just the chips, it's how they are used. The CEM 3394 'synth on a chip' used by the later Sequential synths (Sixtrak, Split-8, etc) sounds completely different from it's Akai contemporaries (AX-60, VX-90) where the filter resonance is overdriven and harsh. Doepfer used the 3394 in the first iteration of the semi-modular Dark Energy and it's implementation sounds different from both Sequential and Akai.
Old 24th November 2020 | Show parent
  #49
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
Actually the T8 had a "mere" Z-80 running MIDI and scanning the keyboard and control knobs, and handling patch load/store. It then summarized the currently-playing patch, and what notes being held down, into a small shared memory.

That memory was read by a Z-8002, a 16-bit big brother to the Z-80. He read the patch parameters, the notes being held, and calculated envelopes and LFOs. Based on all that, he output digital levels for OscA/B pitch, PW, filter cutoff, and volume all for each voice... plus resonance, A/B vol, and noise for a whole split... plus, finally the global L/R balance between the splits. These were output in a burst to a FIFO (kind of memory). Then the 8002 went back to calculating LFOs and envelopes, while a timer read values out of the FIFO, fed them into a DAC, routed that DAC to one of about 53 "sample/hold" thingies that held their input value when told. And those routed to the voice card's VCO VCF and VCA.

So anyway, it was a Z-8002, not Z-80, and it was doing the LFO as well as pitch bend and so on in addition to envelopes, but otherwise, yes, you're exactly right.
Old 26th November 2020 | Show parent
  #50
RDP
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Would any of you pay USD $4k for a decent T8? I swore off big synths after I let my Trident go as my space is limited. But how is the base sound, rather similar in mood to a P600 (pre-GliGli)?

thanks,
RDP
Old 26th November 2020 | Show parent
  #51
Gear Head
I know it's supposed to share the same analog signal path as the P600 but when I listen to demos, it always sounds a just a little smoother and more refined than my P600, closer perhaps to a P5 Rev 3. There's a certain harshness to the P600 I don't hear in the T8. It sounds great and plays great and I love the split mode but for 4k it's a tough sell up against a brand-new Prophet 10 Rev 4.
Old 26th November 2020 | Show parent
  #52
Gear Maniac
 
I think $4k is a great price for a good condition T8. Especially with that wonderful keyboard...
Old 27th November 2020 | Show parent
  #53
RDP
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Here you go. Visual condition seems excellent.


SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS Prophet T8 ζ₯΅ηΎŽε“ https://page.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/j695473969


Oops、closer to 5k.

RDP
Old 27th November 2020 | Show parent
  #54
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by RDP View Post
Would any of you pay USD $4k for a decent T8? I swore off big synths after I let my Trident go as my space is limited. But how is the base sound, rather similar in mood to a P600 (pre-GliGli)?

thanks,
RDP
definitely

they usually go for around 6k and don't come by that often..

it is the best keybed I've ever played and easily competes with a real piano / grand piano (makes sense since it is made by pratt & read)



I also have a P5r3 and a pro one, and while it definitely comes from the prophet family, it has a different sound than the p5. but 8 voices polyphony and that keybed are every players dream
you can route a lot of parameters to aftertouch giving you control over the shape of the sound. the t8 just offers a level of expression unparalleled in any other flagship synth.
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