Heavy Guitar Distortion

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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ccg123
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Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2016 9:40 am

Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by ccg123 » Fri Jan 29, 2016 9:53 am

Hi,

Is it possible to create the distorted guitar effect of Primal Scream's XTRMNTR album entirely through synthesis?

What plugins, VSTs or Audio effects would I be looking at?

I have Ableton Live 9 suite and can only afford free samples and plugins currently.

Thanks,

ccg123

Division Monarchy
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Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 10:54 pm

Re: Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by Division Monarchy » Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:47 am

It seems like they put most elements on that album thru distortions. All the tools are in Ableton Suite. Use Overdrive, Saturator, Amp, Cabinet, Tube, Compression... All those will dirty up your sound. Look into how guitarists set up their effects chains. Run the synths and bass through them too. Experiment a lot. Try creating some multiband distortion using an effects group. You have so many options with what you already have in suite. No need to waste time trying to hunt down more stuff until you work with the great options you already have. And when you are ready to invest more money, I would recommend even picking up a fuzz pedal to route stuff through.

ImNotDedYet
Posts: 244
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Re: Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by ImNotDedYet » Fri Jan 29, 2016 8:04 pm

You could also try amp sims. Guitar Rig if you have Komplete. Amplitube 4 and a few sims and pedals from IK Media is free if you download the custom shop. Disadvantage is custom shop is a bit of a pain. But, it's free.

Angstrom
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Re: Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by Angstrom » Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:43 pm

I've done quite a bit of experimentation with sounds through distortion and seeing why guitars and pianos sound very different from a synthesized tones through distortion.

I can synthesize the sound of an effectless stratocaster playing a specific note using operator to create the harmonics and various attenuations. The problem is that in a "real" instrument each note is different in harmonic makeup. You will be familiar with the sound of a sample pitched up an octave or two, well an accurately created synth note suffers the same sonic flaws.
So ... once that synth sound is run through distortion the flaws become emphasised.

It's a difficult problem. A complex problem - unless you want to hit it with the hammer of effort and use a very competent softsynth and think long and hard about how the harmonics vary up the frequency spectrum and figure out how to morph from one harmonic state to the the other as the pitch rises ... If you do THAT then the input and output of the distortion units will be varied enough to not sound like pitched-up shit.

I've done expecriments but then I remembered that I own several guitars and its 1000% quicker to sample a guitar riff and distort it than it is to synthesize a distorted guitar.

ccg123
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Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2016 9:40 am

Re: Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by ccg123 » Sat Jan 30, 2016 10:05 am

I've done expecriments but then I remembered that I own several guitars and its 1000% quicker to sample a guitar riff and distort it than it is to synthesize a distorted guitar.
I'd be fine with using samples and then applying distortion. I take its probably a better idea to use a basic sample so that I have more control over the distortion effects?

I'm mostly doing electronic music so a distorted guitar sound would not be used as a lead but for layering.

Angstrom
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Re: Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by Angstrom » Sat Jan 30, 2016 2:30 pm

You say "a sample" and what I assume you mean is "of a riff". Yep, thats what I'd do.
Most people would try to use a multisampled sample set of "guitar", but they tend to sound awful. Much better to get 8 bars of choked notes and chords then chop that up / warp it. Then run that through the effects. It will sound much better.

I've found that its possible to get nice/passable guitar setups with Ableton's native effects.
I find that a sort of "dual amp" setup with two parallel chains addressing different distortion needs works best. It gives more stereo variation in the sound and a better range of tones for playing styles.

However, for a beginner its probably difficult to put something like this together so I'll just post the racks.

Angstrom
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Re: Heavy Guitar Distortion

Post by Angstrom » Sat Jan 30, 2016 3:46 pm

OK,
I put up some examples and 4 "guitar amp" racks to download, all wrapped up in a Live set.

you can download 4 "guitar amp" racks. Pull them apart, etc.

http://angstromnoises.com/ableton-guita ... d-effects/

if anyone has questions or quibbles perhaps best to do it on this thread ... viewtopic.php?f=4&t=219973

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