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Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 11:17 am
by si.
Hello there! This tutorial, the first in a series, will show you how to build your own granular synthesis system using Ableton Live (but the principles can be extended to any software sequencer) by slicing and re-sampling audio clips.

First comes a quick explanation about granular synthesis then straight on to the instructions...

read it here

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 6:00 pm
by Neon Breath
Really cool, I'm a granular maniac and I'm really interested (obsessed!?) by this type of synthesis, thanks for sharing this!

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:40 pm
by juanlittledevil
Wow really great post! Can't wait to go play with it in the studio and maybe make something to simplify the process... :)


-- Juan

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:41 pm
by Usedtobe
sweet!

something else along those lines...

get your audio file in a simpler. big brackets are around the entire amount of sound you want to mess with. Set the loop really tiny, with the fade all the way fading, so you got a nice little smooth tone, the modulate (or play!) the loop size and the start position. magic i say

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 11:38 am
by garyboozy
good stuff! always good to see other people's approaches to similar goals

i made a timestretching/granular synth rack using Sampler, where the grains are controlled by the rack's arpeggiator's velocity amount,
so you have full control of speed of the sample, can freeze it, reverse it, alter the smoothness of the grains via adsr etc.
can also play chords with it (kind of..)

grab the rack from here

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 1:45 pm
by chapelier fou
garyboozy wrote:good stuff! always good to see other people's approaches to similar goals

i made a timestretching/granular synth rack using Sampler, where the grains are controlled by the rack's arpeggiator's velocity amount,
so you have full control of speed of the sample, can freeze it, reverse it, alter the smoothness of the grains via adsr etc.
can also play chords with it (kind of..)

grab the rack from here
Wow, great idea. Can't try it now, but i surely will. Don't own sampler, though.

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 12:43 pm
by garyboozy
ahh, doesn't work with Simpler unfortunately; unlike Sampler, it lacks the ability to modulate the sample offset time.

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:51 pm
by chapelier fou
Yeah i know. But i hesitate buying sampler for years...
[OT] one thing which make me not buy it is that you can't midi map "loop start" and "loop length". But i've heard there is an easy solution, with modulation or something like that, right ?

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 9:08 pm
by 0fps
That's a good one :)

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 4:38 pm
by ckluxen
great!

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 5:59 pm
by juanlittledevil
So I finally got to try this out at home, and you weren't kidding about the amount of work needed to make a simple edit. I wish Live had the ability to say insert warp markers at given intervals, or is there? Has anyone tried reverse engineering the analysis files?

The result was very wicked indeed, still haven't found a good way of making an instrument out of this tho, has anyone else had any luck with it?


-- juan

Re: Tutorial - Granular Synthesis in Ableton Live

Posted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:51 pm
by ckluxen
There`s another solution than the one garyboozy has done.
His patch is really clever and very useful for longer samples, but with the price to loose the velocity control of the sound and that`s bad for drum sounds.

So, I think it`s quiet simple for single drums taking the sound into arrange and stretchin to a quarter note via repitch warp and consolidate it.
Next slicing to 1/32 notes in session mode (slice to midi) and saving all the single simpler instruments and copy them back into your slicer preset.

I have a link of one I build yesterday, u just need a single note triggering and all the slices get fired via arpeggiator, the random midi device and the set note length.

But it`s much easier using sampler, use slice to single sampler preset at 1/32 division, save the sampler set and get it back into your slicer preset.
That way u only have to change one sampler device to fill your preset with a new sound. And there are really many things you can do into sampler.

There are both presets in the file, the simpler and single sampler preset.
To use the sound in different tempo you should sample at lower bpm perhaps.

The preset I uploaded uses the setting from the tutorial, 8 slices fired in a 1/128 division.

sorry, but I don`t know how to upload the folder.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/9840607/_granul ... anualr.als
here`s the sample, just change it manual:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/9840607/_granul ... 0hat-1.aif