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Synthesis / Sound Design

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    The Secret Of The Big Red Button

    Synth Secrets

    After more than five years, Synth Secrets reaches its conclusion (and conclusions!). Will we ever look at synthesis in quite the same way again?

    Techniques Jul 2004
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    More Creative Synthesis With Delays

    Synth Secrets

    In the penultimate instalment of this long-running series, we delve deeper into what can be achieved with just a few delays and some creative routing...

    Techniques Jun 2004
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    Creative Synthesis With Delays

    Synth Secrets

    Effects can play just as important a role in sound creation as the elements in a synth's signal path — provided you have access to their constituent parts. We take a closer look at effects synthesis using simple delays.

    Techniques May 2004
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    From Analogue To Digital Effects

    Synth Secrets

    When synthesizing sounds, the effects you place after your synth's output are often as important as the synth itself (just think of last month's Leslie). As we near the end of Synth Secrets, we consider how a digital effects processor works.

    Techniques Apr 2004
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    Synthesizing The Rest Of The Hammond Organ: Part 2

    Synth Secrets

    We conclude our analysis of the fabulously complex beast that is the Leslie rotary speaker.

    Techniques Mar 2004
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    Synthesizing The Rest Of The Hammond Organ: Part 1

    Synth Secrets

    As with so much surrounding the Hammond organ, there's much more to the Leslie rotary speaker than meets the eye, and synthesizing its effects involves considerably more than just adding vibrato, as we find out in this installment.

    Techniques Feb 2004
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    Synthesizing Hammond Organ Effects

    Synth Secrets

    So, you can synthesize a Hammond's tonewheel generator -- but what about its all-important effects? This month, we look at recreating the Hammond's percussion, vibrato, overdrive, and reverb -- and find that it's harder than you might think...

    Techniques Jan 2004
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    Synthesizing Tonewheel Organs: Part 2

    Synth Secrets

    If you followed last month's advice, you'll know how to synthesize a basic Hammond tone on a Roland Juno 6. But can the same technique be applied to any other synth?

    Techniques Dec 2003
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    Synthesizing Tonewheel Organs: Part 1

    Synth Secrets

    Long before Bob Moog built his first synth, there was the Hammond tonewheel organ; effectively an additive synthesizer, albeit electro-mechanical rather than electronic. So emulating a Hammond with an analogue synth shouldn't be too hard, right? Well...

    Techniques Nov 2003
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    Practical Flute Synthesis

    Synth Secrets

    As we saw last month, there's much to synthesizing a convincing flute sound — and yet basic analogue monosynths have offered reasonable flute patches for 30 years. Surely the process can be simplified?

    Techniques Oct 2003
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    Synthesizing Simple Flutes

    Synth Secrets

    The Monty Python team once famously claimed that being able to play the flute was a simple matter of 'blowing here, and moving your hands up and down here'. But there's a lot more to it than that...

    Techniques Sep 2003
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    Synthesizing Pan Pipes

    Synth Secrets

    The characteristic sound of flute-like instruments is complex — but fortunately not so complex that it can't be emulated fairly successfully with a synthesizer...

    Techniques Aug 2003
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    Articulation & Bowed-string Synthesis

    Synth Secrets

    The skilful articulation of a synthesized string patch can improve it no end, even one created using very basic building blocks, as we saw at the end of last month. But we can take this approach much further...

    Techniques Jul 2003
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    Practical Bowed-string Synthesis (continued)

    Synth Secrets

    After putting all our bowed-string synthesis theory into practice on a Korg 700 last month, we found that the result was only acceptable as a string sound with a lot of wishful thinking. Can we improve on it?

    Techniques Jun 2003
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    Practical Bowed-string Synthesis

    Synth Secrets

    Having looked at the mechanics of how a bowed string instrument generates its sound last month, it's time to put these principles into practice, using nothing more complex than a miniKorg 700 monophonic synth...

    Techniques May 2003
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    Synthesizing Bowed Strings: The Violin Family

    Synth Secrets

    Following our success at synthesizing the sound of analogue string machines, we hone our techniques with a view to recreating the sound of the real thing...

    Techniques Apr 2003
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    Synthesizing Strings: PWM & String Sounds

    Synth Secrets

    Pulse-width modulation is a vital tool in achieving lush-sounding synthesized string pads — so what if your synth doesn't have it? Fear not, for PWM can itself be synthesized. Here's how...

    Techniques Mar 2003
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    Synthesizing Strings: String Machines

    Synth Secrets

    Analogue synths can't synthesize every sound, but the attempts made to replicate the sound of orchestral strings were so successful that so-called string machines became much-loved instruments in their own right. We begin a voyage into the world of synthesized strings...

    Techniques Feb 2003
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    Synthesizing Acoustic Pianos On The Roland JX10 [Part 3]

    Synth Secrets

    When trying to copy a real piano with an analogue synth, if one patch doesn't quite do it, two just might...

    Techniques Jan 2003
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    Synthesizing Acoustic Pianos On The Roland JX10 [Part 2]

    Synth Secrets

    How did they make that sound on a subtractive synth? We continue to dissect the analogue 'Acoustic Piano' Performance from Roland's 1986-vintage JX10.

    Techniques Dec 2002
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    Synthesizing Acoustic Pianos On The Roland JX10 [Part 1]

    Synth Secrets

    As explained last month, synthesizing the sound of an acoustic piano is difficult, but it can be done reasonably realistically, as the 1986-vintage Roland JX10 shows. We find out how Roland managed it...

    Techniques Nov 2002

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