Dave Smith’s Tempest drum machine has been “retired”, but new products are on the way

Dave Smith Instruments Tempest
(Image credit: Sequential)

After almost nine years, Sequential has confirmed that Tempest - the powerful analogue drum machine that was developed by industry legends Dave Smith and Roger Linn - is to be taken out of production and retired.

The writing has been on the wall for the Tempest since 2017, when Dave Smith announced that he and his team were ceasing development of it, saying that they’d “reached the limits of the instrument’s available memory and processing ability”.

Commenting on the Tempest reaching the end of its life, Smith said: “Our users have put Tempest to a lot of really creative uses over the years, but a time comes when every good instrument deserves its place in the great electronic retirement community in the sky.

“On the bright side, we’re as busy as ever designing new products, and we’ll be telling you about some of these in the next couple of months. So stay tuned!”

Whether one of these new products will be a replacement drum machine remains to be seen. If you fancy getting your hands on one of the final Tempests, meanwhile, you can contact Sequential for details on how and where to buy.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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