Dave Smith’s collaboration with Pioneer tends to the minimalist side, but not so the new DSI keyboard. The REV2 is all about more.

While it’s not called a Prophet 08 II or something, the REV2 is rooted in that earlier synthesizer. It still has two DCOs per voice. It still opts for the sound of Curtis filters at its core. (In other words, you had better like that particular flavor.)

rev2_front

rev2back

The ’08 “squared” business is all about newer and more, in this year’s model. So this is a 16-voice standard configuration over 8. (8-voice is available, and … heh, actually may still be the more sensible option, now made more affordable.)

It’s also bi-timbral, with stacks and splits.

There’s now waveshape modulation – perhaps the most compelling addition. Vary pulse width of each of the four waveforms, or use an LFO or modulation source.

The Prophet ’08 also lacked the Prophet-6’s effects – plus, versus the P6, you get more of them, plus a more extensive modulation matrix for applying them to more places. So that makes reverb, delay (standard, bucket brigade), ring mod, and distortion more powerful.

And there’s a new polyphonic step sequencer, with 64 steps and 6 notes per step, ties and rests, and of course external sync.

You also get more premium features for your premium price, with USB support, integrated power supply, an OLED display, and better keyboard.

rev2_top

To be honest, I’m a bit torn on these things personally – though don’t mind me. I never could make myself fall in love with packed-to-the-gills digital workstation synths, and so I have to say even in the analog domain, I rather prefer more purpose-built, minimal synths to monsters like this one. That said, I think if you want a monster, this one is very likely going to be on your short list – it has an exceptionally balanced set of features and a mature and beloved sound. So while the Arturia MatrixBrute has gone hog-wild with features, for instance, and the Behringer has entered the market with their cut-rate do-everything keyboard, I think Dave Smith is still going to have a big, big say in the market among synth enthusiasts.

And it’s not a terribly huge investment, either – especially in comparison to what you could easily spend on a Eurorack, if what you want is a playable keyboard synth with loads of features, you’d rather have this.

Coming in April, US$1499 8-voice, $1999 16-voice.

This also replaces the Prophet ’08, now discontinued. (So what you want instead is that 8-voice option, perhaps.)

www.davesmithinstruments.com

  • Foosnark

    I agree, I’m not really a fan of monster synths either.

    I guess 16 voice polyphony will do a bit to appease the Conlan Nancarrow/Black MIDI types…

  • Artemiy Pavlov

    So REV2 will be both in 8 and 16 voice versions? Or the 8 voice is the older model made cheaper?

    • Daniel

      REV2 will be available in 8 voice version MAP $1499 USD and 16 voie version MAP $1999 USD. The Prophet 08 is discontinued.

  • FS

    the pricing is super interesting to me. i mean i like it. but i wonder these both cost less than only the module versions of the P6 and OB-6 and they have more voices. i don’t understand. the thing that could be an instant purchase for me would then be the module version of this, a REV2 8 voice module that could even have a lower price point? like 1K? OB-6 is #1 on my list for an analog poly but i’m still waiting to pull trigger, to justify the purchase but these put a new spin on things…

    • Kyle Sherrod

      The P6 and OB6 are the flavor of the month (and I’m sure Tom gets a cut from OB6), is fairly new, and required a ground up design, so whether or not the actual cost to Dave is higher, he charges a premium for what some see as a premium option. The rev2 uses mostly older designs and parts that Dave has been using for quite awhile so there was minimal R&D, and I’m sure Dave has a large quantity of parts on hand that allow him to keep physical costs down. I’m sure also that over the last ten years his investment in the design of this platform has paid for itself many times over.

      • FS

        interesting… yeah that makes sense for sure thanks.

      • A REV2 module isn’t a bad idea, though…

  • Nagasaki Nightrider

    Squared? 64 channels would indeed be a bargain at two grand.

  • cpc464freak

    8 channel for $1500 or $1000 for the 12 channel Behringer, I’ll go with the latter. Every Dave Smith instrument is about 30-50% overpriced, this is no exception.

    • Daniel

      The Behringer Deepmind 12 has a shorter keybed (arguably of worse quality), definitely more menu diving = less intuitive, limited 2nd oscillator, lacks layer/split, among other things. I actually think the REV2 is fairly priced in comparison.

    • Kyle Sherrod

      To each their own, but I don’t really see your side of the argument. Losing a legitimate oscillator per voice, as well as people that like more keys, sub osc, the dm12 appears to have a heavy menu, among other things…it’s not like we are looking at identical synth structures and only comparing voice counts and bucks. To each their own, but I don’t believe this is overpriced at all. If you can afford the price difference I would be reluctant to gamble on Behringer at this stage (let others test that one out), and it doesn’t compete with Dave feature-wise.

    • kokorozashi

      The rest of us don’t mind either way if you buy one of these. Using the word “overpriced” this way is like saying “everyone who doesn’t share my personal priorities is an idiot.”

      • Spankous

        i like the Prophet but the 08 and 12 versions till now remind me too much of the sound character of my mopho x4 which i sold few months after purchase. couldn`t fall in love with the sound. mettalic, brassy i can`t describe it. Unfortunately not like the Prophet 6 or Ob 6. The Behringer sounds more “oldschool” to me if you are into that sound. Prophet 8 was more like a razor sound Deepmind is more like a caveman knife 🙂 Both can be interesting. Am a bit curious what first real life experiences of users will be (build qual, menu diving etc). The Rev 2 looks interesting but if it sounds like the old version ….. not my thing

    • Nagasaki Nightrider

      Dave Smith does make other budget synths, but the Rev doesn’t fall into that category depending on what you compare it to. At a minimum, those guys know what they’re doing and produce well-made instruments. Meanwhile, based on what I’ve seen of other Behringer products, I don’t have high hopes for the performance or durability of a Deepmind.

    • Spankous

      Dave Smith 8voice will be 1500 and Behringer costs 1200 euros not 1000

    • Dopamine Addict

      I played the DM12 just before playing the REV2. I think they both have their own merits but its difficult to say one is better than the other. The REV2 has a strident brilliance and timbral diversity that is not as apparent with the DM12. The DM12 on the other hand has a deeper architecture and would appeal to sound design heads who love deep architecture and less limits. The effects on the DM12 are what you would expect from TC Electronics. Its a four block multi-effect and sounds fantastic. The effects in the REV2 are nice too, but somehow I feel like the REV2 could survive without any effects, but I am less confident about DM12. All I can say is this, after playing them both for an extended period (~1 hr or so), I had serious GAS and felt like the only real solution was to buy both. They are different colors on your synth palette and both are striking and great in their own ways. The 16 voice REV2 seems like a great price for 16 voices, and great sound and build quality.

    • Chiefy Toepiston

      Overpriced? I take it you didn’t live in the 70s nor 80s?

  • Daniel

    The original P’08 didn’t have any FX at all, they are from the Prophet-6, so perhaps you could clarify that. Also the REV2 adds a sub octave generator that the original lacked.

  • Charles

    It’s a smart move, but personally I’m looking forward to the day Dave’s supply of PA397 chips finally dries up.

    • celebutante

      On the way back from NAMM, my friend and I were joking that Dave Smith must have a giant warehouse full of those chips, and he’s been figuring out new product ideas to dump ’em off for years. With the REV2, he can blow through them twice as fast!

  • kuyawow

    A Prophet 08 squared would have 64 voices. Yes, I’m being pedantic. Still want one though.

    • Wellllll… but a synth is more than just voices.