Roger Linn, he of the MPC and AdrenaLinn and Linnstrument, sends us his friendly walk-through video showing you how to get started actually using the upcoming Linn/Dave Smith Tempest analog drum machine. We’re awaiting details on when this unit is actually shipping; I’ll update this post once we hear.

What you get instead, though, is nearly twenty minutes of Roger walking you through every single function – this is as much a video manual as it is a “quick start.” It’s nice to see some clever workflow features in action, and you get some very in-depth looks at how the Tempest operates. This is documentation, not marketing, in a good way.

Incidentally, lest you think the Tempest is late — or, at least in terms of its last known shipping projection — Dave and Roger technically have until the Autumn Equinox, which in 2011 falls on September 23 inclusive, in order to ship in summer 2011. I’d go further to say that they have until the end of the date of the equinox Pacific time, which gives them a few additional hours beyond even the majority of their customer base. They’re currently listing the Tempest as due in “late summer 2011,” but unless they mean “late” as in early fall, they have until the 24th of September before they become seasonally incompatible.

I believe it’s briefly on the cusp of the Autumn Equinox on which MIDI clocks start running backwards, or vocoders talk without carrier signals, or something.

Happy Labor Day weekend, USA (and labor lovers everywhere). Happy Fifth of September, everyone. Only (??) shopping days until the Tempest ships.

Tempest, Roger Linn + Dave Smith Analog Drum Machine, is Official [with specs]
The Father of Drum Machines and the Father of MIDI Talk About Design and the Tempest [CDM interview with the co-creators]

List price still US$1999.

  • corporation

    very nice…

    gearlust is fluttering in my soul again…

    anyone want to take a guess at the price?

  • corporation


    time to start counting my pennies and sell off some unused gear..

  • kkonkkrete

    It's a very well thought out instrument.  Excellent features, very nice interface.  But the sound?  I feel like it's a bit of a step backwards.  Linn > Smith, IMO.

  • jamesmcn

    NovaMusik is listing it on their front page (along with the Kemper Profiling Amp), so it is real enough for them.

    Very tempting – I love my Evolver despite all its limitations.

  • 1nfinite zer0

    Great to see the workflow in more detail. It looks really immediate and well planned.

    I'm also concerned about the sound though. I know the video mic quality is deceiving… Am I right in assuming that the 4 voice analog-digital combo will make the sounds comparable to a DSI Evolver's capabilities?

  • Peter Kirn

    @MegaTonne: Glad you're liking the demos, but you know no one is following that thread to the one demo you didn't like weeks ago, right? 😉 Now I just hope you like the next one I shoot…

    @1nftinite zer0: 

    Short answer, yes, more or less. But to get more specific, here's how Dave explained the Tempest's sound engine versus similar DSI synths:

    ": Large parts of [the Dave Smith Tetra] are in that there are the same two analog oscillators and low-pass filter and one sub oscillator, and we have feedback like we did on the Tetra and the Mophos. The additions are that each voice has four oscillators — two of them are analog and the other two are digital. The digital oscillators are really samples as opposed to oscillators, but they can go either way. We’ll probably be putting the Prophet VS waveshapes in there also. So you basically have four different sound sources per voice. We also added the high-pass filters which none of our other synthesizers have."

  • Peter Kirn

    See that interview -&nbsp ;

  • engine

    the spec- info is still a bit thin.

  • Peter Kirn

    @engine: What's thin about it? Fairly specific. Is there something else you'd want to know? (see also the interview above, which I think explains a lot)

  • regend

    did he say, "RECORD IN A SOUND?" sampling option info???? I really like how he says that this unit will give me "Confidence" that the project will be saved. one thing that the early non Linn MPC's suffered from was flakey OS's that crashed or didn't save to disk properly. as for sounds? i see this as a synthesis device. it's up to the user to create sounds…not the presets. so far, it reminds me of a Elektron but with the Linn/Smith touch. hopefully they add a sampling option.

  • pulsn


  • V-F!

    Time to sell some stuff.

  • 3 phase

    octatrack is better i think

  • Jakub

    "Autumn Equinox on which MIDI clocks start running backwards, or vocoders talk without carrier signals"

    That's true poetry!

  • j

    i was totally bored by the unit until i heard him manipulate the sounds in the last 30 seconds. so good

    still,  and obviously, too $$ for me

  • Gerren B

    I think that @regend nailed it, It's ultimately going to be up to the user to make this thing great,not the preset samples that emulate drum sounds of the 80's,or the function demo the creator displays for 15 minutes on YouTube. Remember this is a function demo not a creative piece :). The possibilities could be endless so I wouldn't use this demo as the "bar". 

  • Jon

    Looks and sounds fantastic. But $2k? Really? 90% of the people who would want to use this won't be able to afford it. 

  • GovernorSilver

    There's no mention of time signatures.  The Machinedrum supports all kinds of time signatures.  This one area where the online info is "thin".  And yes, the video avoids the subject as well

  • MegaTonne

    Peter, you're following the thread and that's all that matters 😀

  • Pym

    @engine: What do you want to know about the spec? I can answer some here if you have specific questions. Also I'll be posting a more detailed spec of the V1.0 software capabilities at in the next week or so

  • Pym

    @GovenorSilver: The sequencer is going to go through a lot of updates as I roll out the more advanced features in the first few months after release. Odd time signatures are one of those that is on the 'first features to add after release' list. I wrote the UI and sequencer code flexible enough to allow odd meters, so it shouldn't be too far out

  • Marc

    Ahhhhh, so they plan on making it capable of odd meters??? That's all I needed to know. Hopefully, that is true.

  • Yucatec Morillon

    Sounds are coming from Samples!!!! A friend of mine bought it and regret it!!!
    for 1000 Euros would be accepatable,for 2000 it is not:
    Wait a little,price will fall down soon. Papi Linn and Papi Dave must get back to earth and remember
    that we r not all Rich Bitch ready to pay 2000 Euros for a machine based on samples….

  • the dude

    yucatec its a analog drum synthesizer!