Dave Smith Instruments Pro 2
Dave Smith’s 1981 Sequential Circuits Pro-One is one of the most iconic analogue synths of all time. (Kirk Degiorgio also hailed it as one of the unsung heroes of techno when we spoke to him about the late 80s Detroit scene a couple of years ago.) Thirty-three years later, the Pro 2 is its spiritual successor.
Despite his long (and incredibly successful) association with analogue synths, Dave Smith isn’t afraid to do things differently. When we interviewed him about synth technology in 2013, Dave made it very clear that the technology was secondary to the end result: “Some people get way too wrapped up in technology debates, when it should simply be: ‘Do you like the way the instrument sounds, does it have personality, do you bond with it?’ In my instruments, I make decisions based on what I think will sound the best and produce an instrument that musicians will want to play. To me, the key is in the analog filters; in the Prophet 12 we have digital oscillators simply because analog were not precise enough and did not give us all the features we wanted. But, we still have analog low-pass and high-pass filters, and the signal path is analog from that point on.”
So, the Pro 2 follows suit. It’s a hybrid synth, but it has all the feel and character of an analogue classic like the Pro-One, updated for the 21st century. With four oscillators and two filters, this is a very, very serious synth. Add a sequencer, arpeggiator, a delay section, Prophet 12-style Character section (with effects like bit rate reduction and tape simulation) and even a four-voice paraphonic mode, and you’ve got all the makings of a future classic.
We just hope Dave doesn’t wait another 33 years before blessing us with the Pro 3.