Creating Complex Synths

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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yake
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:31 am

Creating Complex Synths

Post by yake » Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:07 pm

Hey board,
I'm new to this stuff. I want to make complex synths that change as they linger. Similar to the motionsynth stuff in korg controllers. I figured out how to chain the synths, for instance strings + bass + the rhythmic synth "ceramic streetwear." However, I want "ceramic streetwear" to only come in after a few seconds of holding down the keys on my controller. I thought playing with attack would help but it just changes the tonality of the synth I want the synth to keep its sound, just come in late.

is there a way to do this?

Thanks.

mikb
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:53 pm

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by mikb » Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:49 pm

yake wrote:Hey board,
I'm new to this stuff. I want to make complex synths that change as they linger. Similar to the motionsynth stuff in korg controllers. I figured out how to chain the synths, for instance strings + bass + the rhythmic synth "ceramic streetwear." However, I want "ceramic streetwear" to only come in after a few seconds of holding down the keys on my controller. I thought playing with attack would help but it just changes the tonality of the synth I want the synth to keep its sound, just come in late.

is there a way to do this?

Thanks.
Just what is "ceramic streetwear"? I can't google it as nothing comes up.

Anyway, are you positive you actually changed the attack of the amplification, i e the VCA Envelope in this "ceramic streetwear" ? It sounds to me you changed the attack of the filter or something else. Or is it something directly in Live that you changed? If the latter, please describe in more detail how you've set things up and what you're expecting it to sound like.
Basic gear info: Macbook Pro with macOS 10.12, Ableton Live Suite version 9 (64bit) with Ozone, Push and APC20 as controllers.

yake
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:31 am

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by yake » Wed Aug 27, 2014 12:31 am

Thanks for the response, mikb. "Ceramic Streetwear" is from an Ableton pack called Samplification. It's in my instrument rack under > Synth Rhythmic. I don't think the specific sound is as important as understanding the process for creating chains. So what I'm trying to do is to get one sound in the chain to come in after some time. Either sync'd with the tempo (ex: 1/8 note) or by time (ex: after seconds). I want the sounds to morph with longer key-presses. There was a link in my original post re: motionytnth by korg that may help:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8reLLV_-wXU

or this diagram:

key press affects chain:
0sec 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5
+Strings............................
+Bass...............
+ rhythm synth.......

I don't know what vca envelopes are or how to find them. I'd like it to apply to other types of synths/effects as well. For example, I'd like to do something where, if I press for more than 2 seconds it will start arpeggiating. (Maybe that is a different question though).

Does this make sense?

mikb
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:53 pm

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by mikb » Wed Aug 27, 2014 2:27 am

yake wrote:Thanks for the response, mikb. "Ceramic Streetwear" is from an Ableton pack called Samplification.

I don't know what vca envelopes are or how to find them. I'd like it to apply to other types of synths/effects as well. For example, I'd like to do something where, if I press for more than 2 seconds it will start arpeggiating. (Maybe that is a different question though).

Does this make sense?
In this case I think it's perhaps better to get to the proper attack control in Sampler, as this is a Sampler pack. The attack macro knob you see in this patch is actually connected to what I called the VCA, which is represented in the "Filter/Global" panel in the volume envelope to the right. The values are mapped and are perhaps not in the range you need.

To fix this go into Macro Mappings by clicking on "Map" above the macro knobs. Find the attack among the mappings and look at the Min / Max values to the right. Choose the proper range for you. Click "Map" again.

Test the Attack again. I also needed to move the "Time" knob to 0% or more and set Vol < Vel to a lower value. Experiment with these and see if that helps with delaying the attack.

I realize I don't fully get what you want to build, except it's a multi-instrument rack of sorts. It's possible a mixer of your instrument collection controlled with your own envelope generator would be more useful, but I'm leaving you with this for now.
Last edited by mikb on Fri Aug 29, 2014 9:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
Basic gear info: Macbook Pro with macOS 10.12, Ableton Live Suite version 9 (64bit) with Ozone, Push and APC20 as controllers.

prebentious
Posts: 310
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2007 12:07 am

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by prebentious » Wed Aug 27, 2014 5:28 pm

How about putting a delay effect on the chain? 100% wet, 0% feedback

mikb
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:53 pm

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by mikb » Wed Aug 27, 2014 6:21 pm

prebentious wrote:How about putting a delay effect on the chain? 100% wet, 0% feedback
Because learning how the synths works is more rewarding. In this case it gives more control as well over more parameters than time.

And if I would use a delay for something like this, I would use a MIDI delay.
Basic gear info: Macbook Pro with macOS 10.12, Ableton Live Suite version 9 (64bit) with Ozone, Push and APC20 as controllers.

Mr Man
Posts: 343
Joined: Sun Nov 12, 2006 4:28 pm
Location: Land Of The Brave

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by Mr Man » Fri Aug 29, 2014 5:37 am

what synth are you using?

uhe zebra2 has multi stage envelope generators (mseg). You should check that out.

mikb
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat Jan 08, 2011 9:53 pm

Re: Creating Complex Synths

Post by mikb » Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:59 am

yake wrote: I thought playing with attack would help but it just changes the tonality of the synth I want the synth to keep its sound, just come in late.

is there a way to do this?
.
I started thinking about using specific envelope generators in a multi-instrument like yours and I remembered all the Max devices that are around — I just recently bought "Dub Machines", a tape delay emulating Max device that I love — and now I found Architect in the Max Device Library.

An Envelope Generator can be routed to volume pretty much in the same fashion as a VCA in a synthesizer. A specific envelope generator would give you one place to fade in and out synth voices coming from different synths that you place in parallel chains in your Instrument rack. I haven't tried Architect yet, but possibly you could also have dynamic control over the envelopes. You could also use several.
Basic gear info: Macbook Pro with macOS 10.12, Ableton Live Suite version 9 (64bit) with Ozone, Push and APC20 as controllers.

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