Behringer Pro-16 Synthesizer Sneak Preview

Behringer has shared a sneak preview of an upcoming polyphonic synthesizer, the Pro-16.

The Behringer Pro-16 appears to be closely based on the classic Sequential Prophet-5 synthesizer, below, which was recently reissued:

Details are still to be announced, but it looks like the Behringer Pro-16 will essentially be a knockoff of the Prophet-5, with increased polyphony. The increased polyphony, though, promises to be a transformational change to the design, because it may allow the classic Prophet-5 synth voice to be used without concerns over voice stealing.

Behringer says, “Not only did we employ the original circuitries of all 3 revisions, we also added many features such as 16 voices, multi-timbrality, LCD display and a lot more. We started the ideation of this project around 5 years ago and it has since grown into an incredibly powerful flagship synth.”

This is an early prototype, so it may be a year or more before the Behringer Pro-16 is available.

Check out the photos and share your thoughts on the Behringer Pro-16 in the comments!

113 thoughts on “Behringer Pro-16 Synthesizer Sneak Preview

      1. If the deep12 (which it is also awesome !) cost around $64 usd per voice….I’m really hopping and sacrificing all the virgins I know (0)! For this to be less than $1,000……I’m all in for 16 voices for les than $1K …which will be a w e s o m e !

    1. Whether it’s like the rev2 depends whether it’s vco’s or dco’s, doesn’t it? The prophet 5 comparison would suggest vco’s. Is there a 16 voice vco synth on the market, except the Moog One?

        1. The Prologue is such a great synth, I can’t see this coming close in terms of sound/features/build, Behringer will have to compete on price.

            1. Is your Korg experience limited to the Monotron or something?

              The Prologue is a sweet synth and has great build. All their ‘flagship’ keyboards have had great build, in my experience.

              The Behringer synths I own or have used (Deepmind, D, Neutron) are a big step down from what you get from pro gear. The Deepmind has a definite ‘home keyboard’ feel. The build on the D and the Neutron is what I’d expect for the price, but isn’t as good as what you get from companies like Doepfer, Moog, SynthTech, Mutable, Intellijel, etc.

              The ‘D’ was also the only synth that I’ve ever purchased that was unplayable when I unboxed it, because it had not been calibrated.

              I own a couple of Behringer synths and they were fair values, but there is definitely a ‘you get what you paid for’ side to them.

    1. If you copy someone else’s famous design you don’t have to spend money marketing it because it sells itself as a “poor man’s classic Rolex/Ray Bans/Porsche.”

      1. I agree. Based on the pattern of Behringer business practices, I’m not suprised by anything at this point, no matter how salacious or petty.

  1. It’s a shame Behringer isn’t adding multitimbrality, complete with seperate outs, to these polyphonic clones. It would be an incredibly appealing feature, especially in this era of relatively inexpensive mixers and multi-channel recording interfaces.

    1. According to the latest FB posting, it IS multi-timbral. And also uses circuits from all three P5 revisions…which probably means switchable filters.

    2. Behringer have done another post confirming that it will indeed be multitimbral, and it will have circuitry for all three revisions too!

  2. “Harry Potter and the Endless Lawsuits of Doom.” Something about that Pro-16 looks really familiar… 😛

    1. It looks exactly like the Prophet, so late 70s. Very Radio Shack.

      They also teased a Jupiter-8 clone, which will excite many.

      1. Notice how cheap the wood looks on the Pro-16? It’s got that Wal-Mart look of ‘walnut tone’ stain on soft wood.

        It’ll be cheap enough that nobody will care if they cut some corners.

          1. You’re forming your opinion based on bias and not a single shred of experience. I you had any experience in the matter you would know there is nothing wrong with the panels other than they might be made of cheap wood. Nothing to report on them other than that

            I’ve had my Deepmind 12 since January 2017. Around the same time it was released. That’s almost 5 years now. The panels and “laminate” are as good as the day I bought it. As is the rest of the synth

            The wood panels used here are likely the same panels used on all the wooden panelled Behringer synth. I know this because they are also on the VC340 and it’s the same wood

            Fairly petty to dismiss a synth because you think, and I’ll reiterate that you only think, it has bad panels

  3. At least Behringer had the intelligence to put triangle waves on both oscillators, unlike Sequential and their Prophet.

  4. I hope to live long enough to see all the Behringer synths fall to rock bottom second-hand prices, at which point a new generation snaps them up and produces paradigm-shifting new music which none of the present bellyaching naysayers could ever have conceived of. Synth content: I adore my Vermona Perfourmer mkII.

    1. I’m really hoping that you’re still around in…probably 2 or 3 years. I’ll join you in having a good laugh. 🙂

    2. It has more or less happened already. My local buy & sell is full of Behringer gear

      Also a Deepmind12 was €1199 on its initial release about 6 years ago. Now you can get them new for €722

      They’re not going to get much cheaper than that unless you go second hand

      There’s a DM12 on my local site now for €600

  5. My studio room is too small for what’s coming from Behringer – first the 2600 – then the Poly D – then a DS-80 and now a Jupiter and a Prophet – clearly the solution is for me to move to a bigger house!

  6. With slow digital envelopes and cheaply sourced internal components, you too can sound just like John CRAPenter…almost

    1. Digitally controlled VCAs are used for Envelopes and LFOs precisely because they are faster and track more accurately than the analogue equivalent and not vice versa as your suggesting

      You’d be hard pressed to find any synth maker these days who did otherwise because if they did, people would say it was shit and slow

      I’ll wager DSI/sequential and Behringer all get their components from the same places – bar Behringer, none of them make their components themselves

  7. I am not sure this fits in the usual ‘knock off’ or clone territory, it seems (and looks) quite different and is a vast improvement (in least in terms of polyphony) over the Pro 5 (who’s basic sound and architecture have been copied by a lot of manufactures in the past)

        1. Since when is ‘knockoff’ an ‘epithet’?

          ‘Knockoff’ is the main selling point for most of Behringer’s synths. Look at any Behringer Facebook post, and almost every comment will be “Make a cheap version of xxxxxxxx”.

          The only reason that Behringer is a player in the synth market is that lots of people are happy with knockoffs vs paying a lot more for the real thing.

          1. Knockoff implies an inferior imitation. These are clones, but enhanced with >3x the polyphony of the original, USB MIDI, etc..

            Synthtopia seems to be using “knockoff” as a way to disparage Behringer while providing a good deal of exposure and publicity, and to drive clicks and pro/anti-behringer flame wars in the comments – a strategy that appears to be working.

            1. “knockoff’ implies a cheap copy of another company’s product – because that’s the definition of ‘knockoff’ – and it’s the whole reason people buy Behringer synths. They’re knockoffs of popular synths, and people want a cheap Minimoog, a cheap 303 or a cheap Prophet.

              Behringer has literally said that copying other company’s products is their business strategy.

              So why do Uli’s true believers have a hissy fit every time they hear the word ‘knockoff’?

              Explain to me why the word gives you so much butthurt.

    1. auratones are made to sound like mums kitchen radio.
      auratones are really irrelevant in 2021.
      Music became really heavy on bass the last 30 years.
      can’t hear any of that on those. 😉
      who would buy this?!

      1. People that understand mixing love Auratones, and know enough to avoided monitors that ‘hype’ your sound.

        Also, your comment is strangely beside the point.

          1. Admin: Personal attack deleted (name-calling).

            Note: Saying your comment is “not a personal attack just a good observation” doesn’t make name-calling any less of a personal attack.

          2. Auratones are often used as a reference speaker for radio, and yes, how a finished track might sound on a TV speaker. Referencing the final mix on a variety of speakers is essential to getting the balance right and ensuring it sounds good regardless of what it’s being played on.

            If this concept is funny/pointless to you, then you probably haven’t had much experience finishing a fully realized song of your own, let alone “understand mixing (lol)” [sic]

            1. the point is you cant mix what you cant hear.
              “mums kitchen radio”, auratones or control 1 or what have you, are no reference you can trust. 😉

  8. While I applaud Behringer for finally leaving their preset-less monosynth designs behind, I gotta admit that I hope for the final design to lose that Deepmind-style cooling fan on the back of the unit. As far as I know, the original Prophet never had a fan inside, did it?

    I would also like to encourage Behringer to invest in some nicer grain wood or a lighter-colored wood. I can’t help but feel the prototype looks kind of bland in comparison to the original, seeing them both side-by-side.

    16 voices of polyphony will be very, very cool though. If they can smooth out possible tuning issues and add a patch layer function to play 2×8 voices simultaneously, they will have a real winner here.

    I’m looking forward to see this product progressing!

    1. “As far as I know, the original Prophet never had a fan inside, did it?”
      You forget one very important thing.. Behringer doesn’t do clones they produce placebo’s.

      If you want a Prophet buy a real Prophet. They come with full warranty and last a long time after that, great housing, wonderful keybed, quality components and overall premium feel. And so many amazing sweet spots that it becomes hard to make it sound like crap.

      But.. If you love to be fooled and tricked than Behringer is your best friend.

      Just don’t forget they use your money to attack reporters, steal identities, sue people on the internet, destroy small synth companies, twist facts, avoids paying taxes etc. And still have a hard time to come up with any form of originality.

      Happy shopping. 🙂

  9. It’s a bit of a shame they don’t have any confidence in themselves and their engineers and feel the need to copy appearances and designs.
    I mean this looks like an interesting product in it’s own right. It’s obviously not going to be a clone of the Prophet 5, they would not be able to put more than three times the original circuitry in there at a competitive price, so it’s going to be its own thing perhaps with a lot of overlap of the DSI sound, that’s for others to judge when it comes out.
    But why do they need to copy the graphics down to using the same font?!
    If they wanted to make a vintage looking synth it’s completely possible to do that without copying someone else graphic and layout design!
    Why not build something that is great judged on its own merits?
    It doesn’t bother me much when I see products using a ladder filter based on an expired Moog patent.
    It does bother me when you essentially are trying to sell products based on the name, goodwill and legacy of people and companies which you have zero connection to…
    So build the synth, make it better than anything you gathered inspiration from, but skip trying to package it as a product from another company!

    1. It has nothing to do with not having confidence in themselves and their engineers. It has to do with more sales and making more money by doing it this way. Judging by the length of the backorders for Behringer synths, they’re making money.

      1. The endless knockoffs highlight that Behringer hasn’t designed anything original that their customers prefer over another copy of a 40-year-old design.

        It’s clear that Uli originally had hopes to do more original designs, like the Deepmind and Neutron, and then had to shift gears when he saw how people were more interested in the Boog.

        1. No, Behringer just makes what people wants… if people stopped wanting the old designs..then Behringer stopped re-making then…very simple..

          1. Precisely – but that’s not going to happen

            Why would we not want them when rich youtubers and synth hoarders have been rubbing unaffordable original synths in our faces with video demos for years now ??

        2. Maybe scratch the Deepmind from the list of original designs. Yes, it evolved into something of its own with the capable mod matrix and the extensive effects section, taken more or less directly from their digital mixing boards. But the prototype was called “Phat 106” for a reason. And it shows in the oscillator and filter sections.

          Here’s a translated article I dug up with the whole backstory regarding the Deepmind’s origins:

          1. The “Phat 106” was a stepping stone in developing the Deepmind.

            But does the Deepmind have the same features as the Roland Juno 106? No.

            Is it named similarly to the Juno 106? No.

            Does it copy the look of the Juno 106? No.

      2. I think so, it is about money. Synths like Deepmind and Neutron are probably not selling enough to sustain their business and large manufacturing facilities. Even Alesis had Andromeda, Behringer could have done more.

        1. Andromeda was amazing, but it doesn’t seem to have been the start of a sustainable analog synth business for Alesis.

          Unfortunately for Alesis, the analog renaissance didn’t ramp up until a few years later. Eurorack existed but I don’t think it had caught fire just yet.

          I think DSI (now Sequential) really helped to get the analog polysynth ball rolling again with the Tetra and the Prophet ’08 and then slowly moving up to expensive flagship/monster synths and redesigns/reissues. Korg also did a great job of starting at the low/affordable end with things like the Monotron, Volca, Minilog and then adding more expensive synths and reissues.

  10. Hihi, why create anything new?
    Copy of xyz creates high media buzz and sells like sliced bread.
    I bet Behringers own creations dont sell so well.
    Just keep on raving how wrong this is, it just creates more hype and attention, fools. 😉

      1. This person does have a point. It’s a PR model similar to certain highly divisive yet very popular politicians. Behringer understands that humans react emotionally and they take advantage of it. By talking/blogging about it so frequently and so passionately we’re doing most of the marketing work; it’s very efficient and successful for them.

  11. “Knockoff” – check
    “Synth Justice Warriors” – check

    Must be a Behringer posting.

    I welcome another 16V analog. Too few of them as it is.

      1. Space heater!

        But seriously you’re right. Pianos need 16 voices at least, but analogs it’s hard to justify unless multi or at least dual-timbre for splits and layers.

        1. You must only use short decays on all your patches, because otherwise your comment makes no sense.

          What was the polyphony on the most successful polyphonic synth ever, the Yamaha DX7?

          16 voices. Having 16 voices means you can use sustain or patches with long decays and not have to worry about voice-stealing.

          I’ve got a Prologue 16, and if you do a dual-timbre 8-voice patch, you have to work around voice-stealing. Never an issue with single-timbre 16-voice patches.

          1. I had the same experience with my Kawai K4. I used it mostly like a poly VA rather than a rompler. Playing 8-note dual programs was always a bit tricky compared to 16-note single programs. Of course, the solution is to buy two (or overdub) and layer two single programs, or polychain if your synth supports that. And don’t get me started on 4 voice vs 8 voice programs on my poly-800.

      2. Hi Dacci Pucci, If you play piano-style with long release tails you need about 16 voices. A progression of three chords using two-hands, and you’re into note-snatching with an 8 voice synth. So most people make do with short release times and compensating for that with oodles of digital reverb.

        True though, multitimbral would be much more interesting.

      3. I do. I can hear voice stealing on my Prologue 16. Thanks!

        Yes, long release times, percussive envelopes.

        Also, I program my own digital oscillators, that makes a huge difference.

        I will be making a something out of this with modifications – so yeah, I need 16 voices.

        Wtf do people think they need to tell you what you need? Sheesh.

      4. “For what exactly does anyone need a mono-timbral 16 voice synth though”

        1) anything that plays more than 16 notes at once

        2) anything that plays much less notes than this but has long sustain and release envelopes

        3) people these days sequence their hardware with this thing called MIDI – you might have heard of it

  12. I don’t know why I never managed to buy a single Behringer synth.
    Perhaps it’s because their process is so well streamlined, it managed to suck all life out of it.

  13. I think the we’ve finally stopped caring. Only 16 comments in a day. Its usually about 45 by now. There’s always going to be someone who wants to say a speech but I think we’ve become desensitized to the Behringer’s knockoff mission. With them announcing a new knockoff every 25 minutes, I’m starting to think this was a planned attack and a pretty good strategy. Everyone will have something to say but money talks, louder.

  14. Pro tipp: If you have 10 fingers and can barely play three-note chords, you will not need a 16-voice mono timbral synth.

    1. With five fingers playing octaves in the bass and three notes in the right hand, you’ll have voice-stealing every time you change chords with a Prophet-5, unless you use patches with a short decay. This limits the types of patches that are practical on a Prophet-5 and limits what you can play. That’s why they made a Prophet-10.

      For keyboard players, 10-12 voice polyphony is really the minimum to have, if you don’t want your patches/playing to be limited by voice-stealing.

      With 16-voices, it’s a complete non-issue.

    1. That would be very cool – and obvious for a 16V synth. :0) if they can do it for one 16V synth, they can do it for any of them. Kudos for common firmware. Here’s hoping they all have 16V with layering.

    1. If folks are actually listening to what you play, I doubt a label will make a difference.

      This just in: MOST PEOPLE don’t care about a perceived Behringer injustice. Most folks recognize it as business as usual in literally every other mature profitable industry.

      1. What industry are you referring to where it’s okay to register a famous brand old name as your own as start making cost reduced copies of their 40 year-old products as your own? The automotive industry? Nope. The stereo industry? Nope. How about computers? Nope again.

    1. That only works if you like having a personal computer around while you play. I do not.

      Nor would I spend money in any vintage synthesizer. There’s no value in them for me.

      1. You can buy a Minimoog for $6k or a Behringer Model D for $300. I know what most people will do. If you have the $$$$ for expensive vintage synths, awesome, most don’t.

  15. Seems like all these premature Behringer concept announcements are a strategic effort at claiming market share & effectively narrowing/stunting/boxing out their competition? Call me crazy but I’m quite sure there’s a long game they’ve got in mind by announcing so many copycat ideas so far in advance.

    1. Yes there’s a bigger picture and you already named a few reasons. 🙂
      But the synth community can push back hard by trashing them with facts online.
      And don’t forget to trash big retailers, investors, banks etc that made deals with Musictribe as well.
      The more whistle blowers out there the bigger the picture becomes for everyone.
      It will cost Musictribe and the corrupt investors in the millions and at some point they will loose interest and find other markets where they can act as parasites.

      1. In the meantime, in the real world, many Behringer synth products are best sellers, judging by the sales ranks on Thomann. You can talk “bigger picture” all you like and put in some of your uninformed kneejerk opinions in for good measure, but you’re just another synthesizer justice warrior with no idea about business.

        1. Looking at the sales ranks on Thomann are probably deceptive.

          Last year Behringer lost a lot of retailers, so in many countries their synths are only available now via one or two online retailers. Thomann is one of the few places in Europe where you can get Behringer gear now.

  16. If it has 16 voices, it’s really not a “knockoff” of the Prophet-5.

    More like a souped up clone of the Prophet-10!

  17. If the midi implementation is on point, then sign me up! The big drawback of many of Behringer’s clones is that they don’t offer up modern midi control, usually only a few parameters such as note on events and velocity :-/ Listen up Behringer: we need fully-fledged midi-instruments!

    1. To be fair, most of Behringer’s knockoffs are of synths from the 70s, when there was no MIDI. So they’re copying the old synth circuitry and tacking on a cheap MIDI to CV converter.

      They’d have to do some original design work if they wanted to add patch memory and MIDI CC control, and the people that buy a Behringer synth understand that they have to cut some corners to make them cheap.

  18. Well – the original Prophet was made by mr.Midi himself, so the MIDI has to be on par, or better. And it had patch memroy as well. On the other hand – put patch memory into a Model-D and it will no longer sound like a Minimoog. There was an article in Soundonsound about the original Minimoog reissue (Gordon Reid) that explained the problems that made Moog decide to go for very rudimentary MIDI. Connect something into the circuit for control that isn’t in the old original – and the sound change. You have to choose – original sound or more features. I think that is the main reason for not pimping up the knockoffs too much. With the Prophet you don’t have that problem – it already had heaps of digital circuits inside controlling the parameters.

  19. Shame about the cut corner of the chipboard-style pressed wood thats stained brown. Some grain would have made all the difference to the look. Obviously its made to a price but for such a big synth they should added $100 bucks and made a big visual improvement

  20. When the orignal P5/P10 has a problem, you feel bad, angry about the quality of the high price point, all the money/time spend on repair. With the P16 just throw it in the trash and get a new one. The latter approach one is more common with consumerism today. Not good, but that’s the world now. Retailers probably have now seen their current/future P5/P10 orders go down due to the vaporware news. Not good news perhaps for Focusrite.

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