how to roll your own Operator drums

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Tone Deft
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how to roll your own Operator drums

Post by Tone Deft » Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:41 am

my latest fixation that I suck at. any simple, brief tips appreciated.

I have presets I can study, it's been talked about a lot and I've hesitated starting this thread when I can kinda help myself but there's some wicked talent up in here. I can get kinda close but not quickly.

simple is key. this can be a DEEP topic, I just want to get quick and competent at it.

do people always use the 'verticle' Operator config?

forge posted a good tip about drums rising slightly in pitch after being struck.

any tips appreciated.
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C.S.
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Post by C.S. » Mon Mar 03, 2008 12:37 pm

I usually use the bottom row second from the right modulation setup. Where B>A and D>C. This way you can have two different drum sounds triggered from the same note. So in a simple setup I would have a bd for operators A and B set on sync 1/4. This way I get a standard 4x4 beat when I hold down a note (for my taste I usually set these to fixed freq that way no matter what key is pressed the bd always sounds the same). For the second operator setup I would make C a triangle wave and D noise. By varying the volumes of these you can come up with sounds the range from electronic snares, to hh, to hi freq beep like perc. I then try different combinations of envelope re-triggering for both operators to come up with interesting snare/hh combos. Once I am happy I tweak the time and tone knob to get the final sound.

example: http://web.mac.com/corywaters/iWeb/Cory ... 20Perc.adg

forge
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Post by forge » Mon Mar 03, 2008 1:13 pm

unless you're going for a specific minimal techno typr sound I'm not sure I'd try and do EVERYTHING in operator

avoid cymbals like the plague - they are a dark art and in the works of the SOS synth secrets dude "even the mighty Kraftwerk were defeated by them"

make of that what you will

but it totally depends what you're after - what type of sounds are you trying to create?

UKRuss
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Post by UKRuss » Mon Mar 03, 2008 1:41 pm

Nice topic. Something I definitely would like to hear what other people do too. Gonna fiddle around with c.s. ideas to start to get a feel. I'll post up what I discover...if anything.

I do use just a basic operator sine wave gated by sidechain from another kick track to add tone. Purely because you can change the note to tune the kick to your tracks key and lengthen and shorten with the release. Easy with L7's sidechain gate! :D

forge
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Post by forge » Mon Mar 03, 2008 1:58 pm

UKRuss wrote:Nice topic. Something I definitely would like to hear what other people do too. Gonna fiddle around with c.s. ideas to start to get a feel. I'll post up what I discover...if anything.

I do use just a basic operator sine wave gated by sidechain from another kick track to add tone. Purely because you can change the note to tune the kick to your tracks key and lengthen and shorten with the release. Easy with L7's sidechain gate! :D
yep that's a good tip - like the old trick of using the test tone from an analog console routed out into a gate that's triggered by the kick to add beef

michaellpenman
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Post by michaellpenman » Mon Mar 03, 2008 2:04 pm

http://www.zshare.net/download/84027714c0da1d/
There is some minimal drums i have created in operator.
Tips-
use fixed values
mix in noise with all your sounds but make this a secondary osc.
make good use of the pitch envelopes

Toob
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Post by Toob » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:06 pm

Nice topic! I'm trying to master Operator myself. You could read Live's lessons about Operator as well.

And that is really cool C.S. and Michaell!!!
Last edited by Toob on Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Angstrom
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Post by Angstrom » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:21 pm

forge wrote: avoid cymbals like the plague - they are a dark art and in the works of the SOS synth secrets dude "even the mighty Kraftwerk were defeated by them"
make of that what you will
but it totally depends what you're after - what type of sounds are you trying to create?

Here's an open hi-hat sound based on the old analogue drum machine type. Its openness is controlled by velocity, so harder = more open. If you want the max release time to be longer, then map a macro to Operator's "time" control. Thats what I do.

To use it - just drop it into a drum rack, or trigger it with note C3

Download Operator open hi-hat

there is (obviously) a closed version of this, but I'm sure you can work that out for yourself.

UKRuss
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Post by UKRuss » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:38 pm

Ah, nice work lads.

rspectful of Tone's request for simplicity, I have a q.

Is there a fundamental reason why synth drums might be better than samples? just more tweakable is is there summat more to it?

Angstrom
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Post by Angstrom » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:39 pm

tweakable

forge
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Post by forge » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:42 pm

yeah the only reason is tweakability

if you want more real or recognisable drums you are probably far better off using samples - you can still do a hell of a lot to them with Si/ampler

UKRuss
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Post by UKRuss » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:53 pm

Tweakability. s'cool. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing other important benefits/advantages etc.

Angstrom
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Post by Angstrom » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:59 pm

well, 'expression' is a crucial part.

the way that synths intermodulate means that performance parameters like velocity driving an oscillator to modulate another; that produces useful variation which samples can't usually reproduce.

It still falls under tweakability - but perhaps also into 'playability'

UKRuss
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Post by UKRuss » Mon Mar 03, 2008 4:03 pm

That's what I mean. Using one parameter to modulate others etc., I need to get into some of that.

Right, playability, manipulation, particularly in a live environment.

I see that. Looking forward to getting home this eve and trying some out.

ethios4
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Post by ethios4 » Mon Mar 03, 2008 4:08 pm

I look forward to adjustable curves in Operator....much more versatility for drum sounds.

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