Two of the best mono/paraphonic synths made
When Sequential released the Pro 3, I had to reexamine the Pro 2, a synthesizer that caused me to reexamine what I looked for in all other synths. Ultimately, I decided the Pro 3 and Pro 2 stand tall together. The Pro 3 does not make the Pro 2 obsolete. The Pro 3 and Pro 2 do share many common design characteristics, but overall they are unique synthesizers.
The Pro 3 is not a bigger and better souped up Pro 2. They both have elements that are improvements over the other. This comparison looks at some of the differences. Be sure to look at the individual Pro 3 and Pro 2 pages for more details about each synth.
The Pro 3 comes in 2 form factors, the Pro 3 SE with its ala Moog hinge, traditional woods and printed panel design that matches the Sequential Prophet X, and the Pro 3 STD with no hinge, no wood and a film panel design. Other than these differences, both Pro 3 models are exactly the same. Both Pro 3s have 37 keys and 1 latchable position-sensitive touch slider.
The Pro 2 has no hinge, but does have traditional woods and printed panel design. The Pro 2 has 44 keys and 2 latchable position-sensitive and pressure-sensitive touch sliders.
The oscillators are the biggest difference between the Pro 3 and Pro 2. Both synths are mono/paraphonic.
The Pro 3 has 3 oscillators, 2 analog and one digital wavetable. 3 voices max.
The Pro 2 has 4 digital oscillators and a sub oscillator. 4 voices max.
The Pro 3 has 3 filters that you can operate in solo fashion (1: Based on Prophet-6, 2: Classic Ladder, 3: Based on OB-6).
The Pro 2 has 2 filters that can operate solo or both in serial, parallel or split oscillators mode (1: Based on Prophet-5, 2: State variable based on Oberheim SEM).
One of the things that make the Pro 3 or Pro 2 synthesizers shine is the sequencer. Bluntly, both sequencers are killer. The Pro 3 sequencer does have more functionality though.
The Pro 3 has 16 tracks x 16 steps x 4 phrases (or linked for 16 tracks x 64 steps). In paraphonic mode 3 voices.
The Pro 2 has 16 tracks x 16 steps or 8 tracks x 32 steps. In paraphonic mode 4 voices.
The Pro 3 has 4 envelopes.
The Pro 2 has 5 envelopes.
The Pro 3 has 4 LFOs.
The Pro 3 has 3 LFOs, however its wavetable oscillator can be the 4th LFO.
The Pro 3 has a 32 slot modulation matrix with over 46 mod sources and over 171 mod destinations.
The Pro 2 has a 16 slot modulation matrix with over 50 mod sources and over 140 mod destinations.
The Pro 3 has 2 digital effects from a selection of: Stereo delay, BBD delay, chorus, flanger, phaser, ring mod, vintage rotating speaker, distortion, high-pass filter, super plate reverb.
The Pro 3 also has tuned feedback with grunge and programmable analog distortion.
The Pro 2 has: 4 delays, tuned feedback and programmable analog distortion.
The Pro 3 has 512 user and 512 factory preset slots.
The Pro 2 has 396 user and 396 factory preset slots.
Features and technical abilities are nice and important to know about to be an informed consumer. The workflow on both these synths is similar and you are likely to have common operational experiences with either the Pro 3 or the Pro 2. Ultimately the sound is the most important thing and that cannot be conveyed in specifications.
The Pro 3 and Pro 2 each have their own characteristic and unique sound. Both are capable of complex sounds from very clean to very dirty, I would say the Pro 3 is grittier and more raw than the Pro 2, especially when you factor in the wavetable possibilities.
If you’re fortunate enough to have the space and resources to choose both, together the Pro 3 and Pro 2 release their greatest potential.
“Combining a Sequential Pro 2 and Pro 3 creates a monster synth system… 7 oscillators, 5 filters, 7 envelopes, 32 lanes of note, parameter and CV sequencing, 8 assignable CV Ins, 8 assignable CV Outs, and I’m not even going to try to count the modulation possibilities.”
Last edited – 5/2/2021
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