Synth and drum machine gurus Roger Linn and Dave Smith have teamed up to bring us the Tempest, the ultimate drum machine. It essentially combines the best aspects of the MPC and various analogue drum machines, and also doubles as a synth. Now all I need is 2000 spare bucks...
Peter Kirn from Create Digital Music lists its main features:
- Six analog voices, each with two analog oscillators and two digital oscillators provide deep, rich sound capabilities.
- Dave’s lowpass filter, a new highpass filter, analog VCA (voltage-controlled amplifier) with feedback, five envelopes, two LFOs, various analog modulation routings.
- In addition to percussion, you can tune sounds and play scales from the pads, or connect a MIDI keyboard and use it as a 6-voice analog keyboard synth.
- There’s a small display – 256×64 OLED – but onboard controls are designed for real-time music making (a topic Roger covered with me in more detail, along with his philosophy for how to make drum machines instruments).
- 2×8 pads, each pressure- and velocity-sensing. Roll function, which doubles as “stutter” when a beat is assigned to a pad.
- Two touch sliders, each with pressure sensitivity, for more real-time control.
- Pure analog signal path, but without skimping on effects – stereo analog compressor and distortion, beat-synced delay that actually uses note effects, and beat-synced stutter.
- Real-time swing controls.