The Tempest from Dave Smith Instruments is a monstrous drum machine designed in collaboration between Dave Smith and Roger Linn. The feature set that DSI took on for this beast is beyond ambitious and five years since its release it is still missing some features and suffers from a few significant bugs.
By no means does this make the Tempest unuseable. I constantly use my Tempest for live performances and in the studio and I love its capabilities. The problems arise under specific circumstances. For example, a legato mode with glide for monosynth sounds has yet to be implemented, so I can’t use it play bendy lead lines with portamento as I am wont to do. For me this isn’t so bad because I can play those lines on another synth and focus on using the Tempest as a very flexible drum machine.
However, we all use the Tempest in different ways. Because I have many approaches to it I often have to jump through hoops or find alternatives. Other users have found that it doesn’t live up to its potential and either sell the machine or shelve it in hope for an update. A community of users at DSI Forums have created a petition to DSI for an update. If you own a Tempest please follow the link below to participate in the petition. The Tempest is a great machine that’s still in production, so it makes sense for DSI to invest in a little bit of fine tuning.