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Surely you have been experimenting with musical synthesis if you have been into music production for more than a few months and make beats regularly. So, what level are you at? Do you wish to do more but just don’t have the knowledge? Want to make more exciting sounds but can’t find the inspiration or workflows that allow you to get into that zone? Don’t worry so much. Let’s go over a few things here, and maybe your head will clear up a little bit.

Do you consider yourself a really good beat maker? Even the most simple-looking and basic subtractive synthesizer can be very involved and demanding of the user, which is you. One of the best tips you can be offered is this: before you start twisting knobs and moving things around, consider how the sound you’re envisioning can be programmed. The more you do this, the easier it will be for you in the future to decide on a sound in your head and replicate the sound through your speakers by twisting the right knobs and moving the right faders.

It truly is an artform to be in awe of. I am still amazed when I watch YouTube videos of guys making insane sound patches with such precision and drive.

Think about how the sound changes over time and use the filters to emulate your feelings about the sound in this department. Think of different sound sources in the way they would help you to make your final sound. For instance, a square wave has a sound that is perfect for modelling wind instruments with, as its hollowness lends well to the task. On the other hand we have the saw wave which is a bit more even with a slight edge. If you’re programming string sounds or some types of cutting leads, the saw is your weapon of choice.

It’s always worth thinking about ways to add subtle feeling and character to your synth sounds. For acoustic instruments that you can synthesize, this is very important. The believability can be judged based on the expressiveness alone of, say, a synth guitar or violin. These are oft-offended instruments when it comes to emulations. Beginners and advanced patch makers should take note!

You can’t just loop things indefinitely without modulation. If you do, you’ll be left with a cold tone that can be disastrous for the warmth that you should try to get out of your virtual instrumnets. So what can you do? Well, still loop, but instead of just finding a good cross-over point to loop with, apply subtle filter envelopes as the sound evolves. This is the trick to making sounds that are palatable to your audience.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, May 12th, 2010 at 7:12 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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