Create Electro Stab?

Well, I was watching this tutorial from sub-focus. He was explaining how to create a electro stab from using saw waves without detuning. It sounds simple but I have problems actually doing this in Renoise by creating my own Saw multiple saw waves but my attempts were futile. Can anyone give this a shot?

Heres the tutorial its short.

For the basic sound you want 3 sawtooth notes:

  • Base note - 12 semitones
  • Base note
  • Base note + 16 semitones

For example:

  • C-3
  • C-4
  • E-5

The other stuff is just clever manipulation of the volume and filter envelopes. It can be weird and daunting at first, but stick with it and it’ll begin to make sense.

Here’s a quick demo I made for you: (Renoise 2.6 file)
dblue-saw-electro-stab.xrns

Note: Rather than use the instrument’s own envelopes, I have chosen to do the volume and filter envelopes in the DSP chain instead. This allows me a greater degree of control over the various elements, and allows things like the envelope length to be automated and changed over time.

I’ve also used a dummy/trigger instrument which resets the volume and filter envelopes. The velocity of this trigger instrument controls the cutoff frequency of the filter, and the instrument’s note/pitch controls the length of the envelopes. It’s a bit of a weird technique, but I like how it physically separates the oscillators from the control data, and it’s quite an interesting way to work imho. You may prefer to work another way of course. Just experiment and have fun :)

Obviously this is not 100% identical to what Sub Focus is doing, because Renoise does not have a full synthesis engine, but you can at least get pretty close. If you want a more authentic sound, then you’re going to get better results using a proper VSTi synth instead. Sub Focus is using Native Instruments Massive, but almost any standard synth with at least 3 oscillators will do the trick, and there’s a lot of great freeware out there to choose from, depending on which OS you use.

Thanks man, I will look into this. Thanks a lot man.
edit:
Now that I think about it this could be place on the tips and tricks section. Unless its already there and missed it.

No problem. I realise that my technique here may be a bit strange, but hopefully you can still use the basics to get the sound you’re looking for.

I think it sounds great but looks a little cumbersome. Renoise allows for great flexibility as shown in your example, but maybe there’s something to innovate here to make this more intuitive for the masses. This could be done with automation, but then you lose the dynamic approach. I’m thinking how about a seperate effects layer (generator/automation) window that could be usable with a pattern effect command similar to the sample offset command, might be important that position 0 is a OFF state, maybe it should only trigger markers :unsure: … think it’s been discussed before, maybe something like “clip effects” and my head hurts already, so I’ll leave it there :)

As far as the oscillators, I just tried a little experiment using this tool (generate custom wave). It was a little fiddly to figure out what frequency multiplier is 16 semitones, but I think I got it. Then I played with the envelopes to make something that sounds OK. It makes a very harsh electronic sound and doesn’t really sound like the video… not probably what you are looking for. But I think that this generate custom wave tool is worth a look.

Also you have to be careful how many cycles of the wave to generate. There is certainly a mathematical way to figure it out, but I just fiddled with it until it looked like the beginning and end of the sample lined up OK.