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dave smith instruments
poly evolver keyboard
(potentiometer edition)

price : $2,749.00

the poly evolver keyboard is dsi's flagship synthesizer, a nearly-knob-per-function knockout that sounds unlike any other synth out there—except another evolver, of course! don't like a high-end hardware synth that requires wading through endless menus to program? not an issue with the poly evolver's 78 knobs—60 of them potentiometers—and 58 buttons, incuding a keypad for direct access of programs.

an analog/digital hybrid, the four-voice poly evolver features four oscillators per voice—two analog and two digital—in a unique stereo voice architecture with a real curtis analog low-pass filter per channel. the digital processing does not simply add effects at the end of the signal chain, but is tightly integrated with the analog electronics for tuned feedback, distortion, bit crushing, and synced delays. it can also process external audio and has separate stereo outputs for each voice.

the poly evolver is capable of producing sounds ranging from classic analog to more brash and edgy digital sounds. it is also multitimbral, with the ability to play up to four parts simultaneously through separate stereo outputs. and it can process external audio.

the poly evolver is not a generic "slab" workstation. if you're looking for realistic pianos and strings, keep looking. but if you want a truly unique, inspirational, real instrument, look no further.

5-octave, semi-weighted keyboard action with velocity and aftertouch.

spring-loaded pitch wheel and assignable mod wheel.

512 fully editable programs (4 banks of 128) and 384 combos (3 banks of 128).

numeric keypad for direct access of programs and combos.

oscillators per voice: 2 digitally controlled analog oscillators (dcos) with selectable sawtooth, triangle, saw/triangle mix, and pulse waves (with pulse-width modulation), and hard sync; 2 digital wavetable oscillators with prophet vs waves and wave sequencing capability, fm and ring modulation.

white noise generator.

2 low-pass filters per voice: 1 analog curtis filter per channel, selectable 2- and 4-pole operation (self-resonating in 4-pole mode).

3 envelope generators per voice: filter, vca, and assignable (four-stage adsr).

4 lfos per voice.

glide (portamento): separate rates per oscillator.

analog vcas.

digital high-pass filter.

digital delays: 3 separate, syncable, stereo delay lines per voice.

tuned feedback with "grunge": use feedback as a pitched sound source.

distortion and "output hack."

16 x 4 step sequencer per voice.

dimensions: 14.00" (35.56 cm) w x 38.5 " (97.79 cm) l x 5.09" (12.95 cm) h (2.84" at front edge; the feet account for 0.625" of the total height)

weight: ~28 lbs. (12.7 kg)

ins and outs
midi in, out, thru, and poly chain.

stereo audio input: 1/4" unbalanced.

main stereo audio output: 1/4" unbalanced.

separate stereo outputs (per voice): 1/4" unbalanced

sustain pedal input: accepts normally on or normally off momentary footswitch.

pedal/cv1 and pedal/cv2 inputs: responds to expression pedals or control voltages ranging from 0 to 5 vdc (protected against higher or negative voltages).

headphone output: 1/4" stereo phone jack.

includes power supply for 110v – 240v ac operation (15 vdc, 1300 ma) and operation manual.

the following sound clips were recorded directly from a single poly evolver in real time—no overdubs—using combo (multitimbral) mode to combine multiple sequences with keyboard control with pressure and wheels. play loud and in stereo! (thanks to stefan trippler.)

file size
analog groove 5737k
poly punk 1287k
poly variety 3002k
4 to the floor 1387k
c major etude 2487k
crimson poly 5808k
cornflakes pop 1248k
70s tv synth 1643k
distorted tribal beat 1221k
dumb 'n bass 2252k
poly goes to bollywood 846k
classical promenade 1127k
combo tune 1690k
the poly rock-bottom 1924k
the blip-bleep song 2159k

these are dave's original demos and accompanying notes: "here are some intitial sounds i threw together. i plugged a single poly evolver into a computer. no effects in between and no post-processing, just straight audio from the poly. all were recorded just using the keyboard with pressure and mod wheel."

file notes size
magna strings big sound, lots of delay, filter craziness with pressure 475k
nice wave sequence a wave sequence gated from the keyboard 457k
feedback orch big sound, feedback with pressure - each note different 395k
spacy sounds non-tonal sounds   579k
trash wave sequence a percussive wave sequence 388k
wave seq split 1 voice plays a wave sequence, 3 others play above 299k
two stacked voices stacking sounds - only two notes played! 299k
simple wave sequence a clean, simple wave sequence 268k
pure stinky cheese sorry..... 443k

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