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9.3 Advanced Synthesis: Synth

Although Synth is actually an abbreviation for Synthesis, in the context of Dance Music Instruments, Synth is one of 5 main digital instruments: Bass, Lead, Synth, Strings and Pads (descriptions in Chapter 8).


Elastic Synth
To create an interesting elastic synth, two main filters are required.
Elastic Synth.mp3

1) Create a stab synth (quick attack and release).
2) Add a Delay with ¼ or 1/8 bar delay.
3) Add a Wah Wah filter, with a full range, medium depth, 330 ms attack and 200 ms release.
4) Record a rhythmic pattern with between 2 or 4 chords per bar.

 

Multi Mod Synth
Using a combination of slow (1/2 bar) and quick (1/16 bar) LFO modulated Cut Off filters crates an interesting dynamic over time.
Multi Mod Synth.mp3

1) Create a stab synth (quick attack and release).
2) Assign LFO 1 (frequency of at 1/2 bar) in the modulation matrix to a Band Width Cut Off filter, with a positive value (see diagram below)
3) Assign LFO 2 (frequency of at 1/16 bar) in the modulation matrix to a Low Cut Off filter, with a positive value (see diagram below)
4) Add saturation and a touch of delay and reverb.
Record a rhythmic sequence.

Fig 1: An LSO assigned with a positive value in a modulation matrix will oscillate from the current value up first, and then down. For example, if Cut Off 1 was set to 50%, the LFO would rise up to 100% and then down to 50% again. An LSO assigned with a negative value in a modulation matrix will oscillate from the current value down first, and then up. For example, if Cut Off 2 was set to 50%, the LFO would fall down to 0% and then up to 50% again.

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