Dave Smith Instruments Mopho

Dave Smith Instruments Mopho Image

Dave Smith Instruments is back with another excellent and affordable analog monophonic synthesizer. The Mopho is a single voice from the mighty Prophet ’08 with the addition of one sub-oscillator per DCO. It offers a stereo output and an audio input for processing external sound through its fantastic Curtis lowpass filter. The Mopho's 2+2 oscillators, fully analog signal path, extensive modulation capabilities, and characteristic DSI lowpass filter makes big analog sound available at an astonishingly low price!

The desktop module version includes dedicated knobs (detented encoders) for pitch, volume, program selection, filter, and basic envelope controls as well as four knobs that can be assigned to any other parameters the user chooses. The interface is somewhat limited, but easy to learn and navigate. To overcome this limitation, there is a free Mac/Win software editor included, and there are a few third-party software editors available as well. Additional features include four LFOs, a gated 16-step sequencer, three ADSR envelope generators and an arpeggiator. There is also a "Push-It" button which auditions patches, can step through a sequence or function as a tap-tempo button.

Dave Smith Instruments Mopho Image

The keyboard version adds a USB interface, as well as a 32 key (2.5 octave) semi-weighted keyboard with velocity and aftertouch. With much more front panel real estate available, far more parameters are immediately accessible via 25 knobs as opposed to the desktop version's 10. Pitch Bend & Mod Wheels and classic wooden end panels are nice additions too.

Both versions include a prorietary Poly Chain socket which allows you to connect and control other Dave Smith Instruments synthesizers for expanded polyphony and a much bigger sound. This works particularly well with the Prophet '08, and the Tetra.

The Mopho is an excellent choice for anyone looking for large, aggressive analog sound combined with extreme flexibility at a very low price. It's tempting to make the Pro-One comparison, but it's much more accurate to think of the Mopho as a descendant rather than a reproduction. It shares the same spirit and function, but has a soul and personality that is all its own.

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Dave Smith Instruments Mopho? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

55 Visitor comments
September 13, 2011 @ 9:41 am
Have one of these just over a year now, its taken some time to really get into t but thats coz I have a 9-5 :( - This is a wicked little synth, especially good is the sequencer and all the routing options that go with it. I love it now. I originally had the desktop version but quickly upgraded to the keyboard which I highly recommend as it brings the workflow to your fingertips. The presets, as per usual, do not do this machine justice. You have fiddle awhile before it really comes alive.
September 8, 2011 @ 3:48 pm
A bit shoddy regarding the design and implementation of the LCD, and some of the buttons look like they might not make it into next year, but its got this wonderfully aggressive and expensive sound that outclasses ALL soft/VA synths even some of the most expensive Nords...all for about $800USD.It also likes to stay in tune, it fights to stay in tune actually - extremely stable synth! Get this synth if you think you can do something with it; if you believe you can innovate and not just let it rot in your closet when the honeymoon finally wears off...because in that case just get a Microkorg.
August 13, 2011 @ 8:31 pm
I prefer vco synths to dco synths. Fatter, and through instabillity richer in sound. So I prefer the Pro one over the Mopho. Nice price though, although the colour... why not simply black.
July 25, 2011 @ 5:31 pm
Brilliant, absolutely amazing. I own the keyboard version and it truly is a great piece of kit. The sound is huge, warm and versatile. Sure it's a monosynth, but so what? It's priced accordingly and it's that limitation that gives it its own character and makes you explore the sound more. Anyway, it sounds truly massive and is bursting with features and modulation options. A lovely keyboard with aftertouch, tasty wooden ends, analogue power, and bright yellow! What's not to love?
July 5, 2011 @ 10:28 am
I have the desktop version, and find it a bit awkward to program. It’s partially due to few knobs, but programming is much easier, actually pure fun, on my microKorg which has even fewer knobs. You actually have to prepare the patches before jamming in the studio, while you can build them during the jam with the microKorg.

But when it comes to sound, the microKorg isn’t even close. This little box sounds huge, and the filter is lovely. It does not sound very vintage, but it certainly sounds analogue. The sound more than makes up for the awkward programming, and it’s cheap!
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  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - Monophonic
  • Multitimbral - 1 part
  • Oscillators - 2 DCOs, 2 Suboscillators
  • Waveforms - sawtooth, triangle, saw/triangle, and variable pulse width square waves, with hard sync
  • LFO - 4 LFOs with triangle, saw, reverse saw, square, random
  • Filter - 24 or 12 dB/oct selectable lowpass with ADSR
  • Envelope - 1 Analog VCA; 3 ADSR Envelopes w/Delay (VCA, VCF, Assignable)
  • Effects - Feedback (routes output back into input!), Glide/portamento (keyboard version)
  • Sequencer - Gated 16-step sequencer (one sequence per program)
  • Patterns - 4x sequences per patch
  • Arpeggiator - Up, Down, Up/Down, Order Played
  • Keyboard - 32 keys w/velocity and aftertouch (keyboard version only)
  • Memory - 384 user patterns
  • Control - MIDI In, Out/Thru; USB (keyboard version only)
  • Date Produced - 2008 - Current

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