DSI Evolver - opinions?

best mono hybrid synth ever!
I have the version encoders (
MEK) and today I did the treatment with DeoxIT … all encoders are defective returned as new!

I had one twice, over the years, and I have to say that it is a great synth but that I never clicked with the interface. I am one of those simple minded people that likes to see it all laid out in front of me. The matrix made my head swim.

One thing I dislike is the clicking envelope. Especially on very low frequencies and closed cutoff this is hearable. But that’s a known issue at Dave Smith Instruments. They say it’s not a bug, it’s by design!

Interesting, thanks for the explanation guys.

I like what the nord modular manual says :
Note: A very short attack time can produce a click in the be- ginning of the sound. This is only normal according to physics theory.

I don’t even always like to think of it split left and right, but closer to dual mono. Setting the left and right filters to different cutoffs + self resonance is nice!

The “DSI sound” I think is mostly because they let the cutoff go to 164 instead of 127. Most of the time it’s too bright that high, but it’s useful every so often.

The polyevolver interface always seems to want me to make “proper” somewhat classic synth sounds. I mean, it’s very easy to get delicate VS like ambient and delayed sounds or big, in your face unison leads and that sounds great, but it’s not really the kind of music I make.

If I only looked at it as a single instrument i’d probably get on with it better. I guess I’m more of a “groove box”, focus on less things at once person. Now that I think about it, it’s great when jamming with other people and they take care of other parts.

I find the polyevolver does better percussion synthesis than the tempest by a mile. It’s all the other stuff in the tempest that makes it interesting. You have up to 8 resonant filters, forget the # of analog oscillators for a moment. :slight_smile: Resonant sine can be delayed and routed back into an audio input for high pass and distortion, often more usable than on the output, also to trigger the sequencers in various ways and for more filtering, etc. FM + RM + delay feedback for your mid/upper register percussion stuff and layering textures. So even with less polyphony you end up with what I find to be fuller, more complex sounds.

…Damn, I have it packed up now for safe keeping while I decide what to do, but now I want to get it back out! :dizzy_face:

Waldorf also cite the laws of physics and some other solid science for clicking behaviour in the Q series - so that’s DSI, Nord and Waldorf all saying “by design”

So… It’s probably not an issue unless there’s a global conspiracy of synth makers :slight_smile:

cheap envelopes tend to click.

No problems with my polyevolver. Very versatile. The envelopes may not be the fastest but I have never taken issue with that. Perhaps the clicking being talked about has to do, as previously mentioned, with very fast attack times? If you are interested in one, I suggest looking into the poly pe edition. The upgrade from encoders to pots is reportedly well worth it. Fwiw, I have a fair amount of high end new and vintage synths in my studio space…the polyevolver is easily one of my favorites-the sequencer, the modulation capacity, and its ability to do traditional sounds all the way to otherworldly make it one that I reach for on almost every project.

[left]I had been drooling on it since it came out. I eventally got one a couple of years ago. The possibilities are huge, very cool and capable synth.
The matrix program surface is clever. But I don’t know, I finally did not manage to click with it. I made a man happy by selling it like 4 months later.

I did this track with it, L’art Saigne. Feedback.

L’art Saigne…
by Steve Gardet

Holy fruckin epicness!!! Rough ride at times but holds the edge magnificently - what a synth to get lost in

Here a session with an Evolver, MnM and Micromodular. The Evolver kicks in at around 3.10. I think it complements the Elektron sound very well. It’s a rude in-your-face synth, also capable of spacey sounds but more in a Kraut way than in an ambient way. I mostly use it for rhytmic synth patches, and the occasional classic analog sound, which I try to avoid all the time.

Hey guys
I understand that clicky envelopes are made “by design”. i have a mopho and use it very often for nice “clicky” percussion sequences with VERY short envelopes (alva noto style). sounds beautyful for ceran styles. anyways if you dont want the env´s to click just add bit of attack/release and they wont click :slight_smile:
anyways one of the dave smith synths in your arsenal can only be possitive (i wish i had cash to get prophet 12 … but…)

I was planning on saving up for the new Elektron, but then one of these popped up out of the blue on the local craigslist today dead cheap, so I jumped on it, and have now messed with the Evolver for about an hour! I figured that this one coupled with the OT could make an alternative sort of Poly Evolver, although strictly speaking a monster multi mono-evolver, but that’s cool. I like it so far, although the editing system is a bit confusing still. I’ll have to read the manual or something at some point, I reckon. Found what seems to be a very good alternative manual here as well;


The same guy that made some killer guides for the Microwave XT. :slight_smile: I’ve got a lot of questions, but figured I’d keep them to myself after I’ve RTFM, as it’s probably all in there. No power button though! That was a surprise.

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had one a long time ago and used it mostly for very colorful and unusual leads. sold it. bought another one and almost sold it recently but then i started using again lately for making percussive sequences and basslines. i make sounds with it i can’t come close to on my other synths. great for experimental drones and drum hits also also. i think my favorite sounds are the lead sounds it produces. very worthwhile synth to invest time in.

I like it. Beautiful sounds, interface is a bit difficult to me, but anyway - great synth. I used one of the presets here - some people like this :wink:


Reading the manual is essential, if only to learn what the tiny display is trying to tell you. After that is done, I think you’ll appreciate how every function is available right there on the surface.


Reading the manual is essential, if only to learn what the tiny display is trying to tell you. After that is done, I think you’ll appreciate how every function is available right there on the surface. [/quote]
Sat down with the manual and the Carbon-guide this morning for a couple of hours. Figured out most of the things that was puzzling me. What can I say? It’s just incredible that this thing is a one voice synth! The sound it can churn out is just immense. Looking a lot forward to exploring it more and using it with the OT. :slight_smile:

I owned many va and analog synth from Viruses to Moogs ans a lot in between and I tell u that:


Great powerful sound, thick, great filters, greaaat envelopes. Problem is that many people get stuck in its presets which stink! The demos on youtube makes it underated. It can sound really good. Those distorsion like sounds is because of people using some stinking presets. U can do anything with it. Really deep synth.
Together with the Moog is has the greatest character to me :wink:

Nice! How long have you had yours? do you still use it a lot? :slight_smile: The more I understand this thing, the more I like it. I still think it clips a bit too easily, and it has a tendency to turn everything into a very chaotic noisy mush, but that’s probably because I don’t know it too well yet. Made a couple of pretty neat patches today. Very exciting synth. Just when you think you’ve applied all there is of modulation to it, then “no, there’s still like 15 different modulation options available”. And as we all know - lots of modulation options = sweetness!

I have it for a few years, but I still discover new sound territories with it. I also own other synths so I did not concentrate on it as much time as it deserves, but together with the Moog sounds as great as it can be. I am waiting soon for a Pulse 2 to see how good it sounds, but from all the analog hardware I tried, I kept only Evolver and Moog SubPhatty. I know Evolver is not only analog but it doesn t matter, actually it s great for that too… too bad it’s only monophonic. At a certain point I was thinking to buy another 2 to chain them…but too much of a pain. :slight_smile:

Yeah, it sounds pretty good only using the analog oscillators, but I have to say, it’s when you mix in the digital that the interesting stuff really seem to kick in. But cool, thanks for saying! That’s encouraging, I love synths that doesn’t feel limited. It’s funny you mention the SubPhatty, as I had a Little Phatty for a while, and although it had a nice chunky sound, it just felt incredibly limited to me, there just wasn’t a lot to tweak. But that’s another discussion. :slight_smile: