Synth Programming Question

The bass line that goes throughout the song. Someone suggested I try three detuned saws with 2 unision voices, with quick decay, taken down -24 semitones. That didn’t sound like it at all, and it sounded muddy too.

So can anyone here help?

Check this out:

This is two pulse waves in unison with pulse width modulation on both of them. I also added a little white noise and then turned the lowpass filter way down.

Sounds close, but I can’t seem to recreate that patch. Do you have a printscreen of the patch so I can try to match it?

Uh, I did it on a hardware synth. :(

What synth are you using?

I only have VSTs: Vanguard and Toxic IV.

on my synth I have the option to set different pulse widths for each of the pulse oscillators, which is important because you don’t want them to have the same pulse width when the lfo is modulating them, you want the two of them changing independently.

Oh ok, thanks for the help.

Got another bass question, then. How do I make this fading in “bass” sound in this clip:

Cutoff is being modulated, I can tell that much, but how do get the actual sound, I’m not too sure. It sounds like maybe something FM.

Fullofkittens was pretty much spot on - it’s a fairly simple PWM bass sound that can be created in many different synths.

Luckily for you, there’s a great free VSTi called ASynth by Antti @ Smartelectronix. Literally the 2nd preset on it is “PWBass” and is ridiculously close to the sound in the Quake video. You could just tweak slightly to give it your own personal touch and it’d be perfect.

It’s a simple sweep of the lowpass filter in the synth, going from low to high. You could either do this with automation, or give the filter envelope in the synth itself a long attack duration.

A quick 10 minute attempt to get something pretty close to these sounds:

(the 2nd sweeping sound is pretty lazy… I didn’t match it very well, but you get the idea hopefully)

That sounds great, thanks.

Since we’re on such a roll here, how about helping out with the bass heard in this song from the movie Goldeneye?
It’s heard at around 0:40 seconds.

this boys trying his luck a bit ain’t he??? :panic:

lol jks, i would help but i know nothing, i just get samples and see if they sound kl :unsure:

Well this is the only forum where people actually HELP with synth programming. KVRAudio for example, just full of people saying, “ZOMG JUST LOOK FOR A PRESET”

Well, better have all these questions posted in one topic than having them from several users in several topics…
Sounds like a good compromise to me…


Well, either way, don’t be afraid to simply experiment yourself, because it’s really not as difficult as it seems. Synths can appear to be very scary at first due to all the parameters and controls, so it’s important to start learning and experimenting with something more basic. Vanguard and Toxic both sound nice, but they may not be the best ones to learn on. At the very least, you should try to start with the most basic preset they offer, which only uses a minimal amount of features. Most synths offer a preset called “Init” or something similar, which is usually just 1 oscillator (typically a sawtooth or a sinewave) with most other stuff disabled. From there you can adjust various things and slowly begin to understand how each parameter affects the sound.

Another very important thing to remember is that it does not matter if you can’t perfectly recreate the sounds you hear by other people. I know it can be frustrating when you want to make music similar to the stuff you enjoy listening to, but try not to focus on that so much. At the end of the day, all you will have are perfect recreations of something that has already been done, which is quite boring imho. Find your own sound and your own direction, and enjoy the process of creating new things that you can call your own.

Regarding the GoldenEye video, it sounds like a real electric bass guitar to me.


One thing you will notice is that any time I try to recreate a sound, it always seems to sound pallid compared to the original… I guess because I don’t go nuts because I’m trying to be clinical? But if I make my own sounds I go nuts and the stuff I make still sounds appealing to me after lots of listening (which is important because I take forever to make tracks).

The attacks do, but then the tails don’t… maybe it’s a bass synth pedal?

Actually I’ve learned quite a lot about subtractive synthesis (waveforms, LFOs, filters, modulation, whatever), and even some FM synthesis, and I’ve made a number of patches.

Occasionally I can program a patch that is a replica of something I’ve heard elsewhere (like one of the bass sounds from “Smack My Bitch Up” from The Prodigy, or the strings from a certain Eurodance song that I won’t name), but there’s still a lot of interesting sounds that I don’t quite know how to re-create, so that’s why I ask for tips on forums.

Anyway, I don’t think it’s a real bass guitar in the Goldeneye vid, but here’s another song from the same soundtrack, with a similar sounding bass, which might help:

It starts at around 0:32 seconds

haha, lollage! first hand exp of that : )

got to be honest i reckon this and dsf are the most helpful forums…

and they all think i’m really clever cos i use renoise :badteeth: we all know the truth

I believe that to be a valid reason ;)