Sample & Hold = Boring?

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Sample & Hold = Boring?

Post by premieklovn » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:12 am

Hi

What's your honest opinion on S&H?

To me it's a gimmick.
I think it's OK to use on a bass dronish thing when routed to the filter and it is cool to sync the S&H to the arp on the JP4 but I'm quite sick of the cliche computer noise usage. Do you agree? Have you heard some original use of S&H?

Show me some original use of S&H!

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Post by CapnMarvel » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:18 am

Neil Young had a great track on the 'Trans' record called 'Sample and Hold' that was about computers falling in love with one another.

Otherwise, yeah...kind of a stale sound to me.

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Post by Bitexion » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:21 am

If you have the possibility to change the source then it's great.
Exchange the noise with a sawtooth for instance, and mod an oscillator, and you get a stepped arpeggio following the sawtooth shape. It still samples the sawtooth at the speed you decide, so you get a "staircase" shape that modulates the oscillator instead of "computer bleeps".
I guess you can only do that with modulars, though.

I've never heard a real computer that sounds like a S&H circuit, though :P
I've also heard very nice eerie effect where a slow unison pad fades in random S&H on another oscillator set to very high pitch so you get a tingling sound on top of the evil pad.

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Post by Synthaholic » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:26 am

Besides Halloween and 50s SciFi type sound effects, I've used a subtle, slow S&H on oscillator pitch to add "analog drift" to some of my Microkorg patches. With two LFOs that can both do S&H you can have each oscillator "drift" independently.
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Post by CapnMarvel » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:28 am

Synthaholic wrote:Besides Halloween and 50s SciFi type sound effects, I've used a subtle, slow S&H on oscillator pitch to add "analog drift" to some of my Microkorg patches. With two LFOs that can both do S&H you can have each oscillator "drift" independently.
What do you mean by 'Halloween' effects? You mean like the soundtrack to the movie, or something else?

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Post by Synthaholic » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:34 am

I made a "Halloween sound effects" CD last year. One of the tracks was "Mad Scientist's Laboratory" which used a lot of S&H effects. I also used S&H effects on another track I called "Alien Abduction".
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Post by CapnMarvel » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:36 am

Synthaholic wrote:I made a "Halloween sound effects" CD last year. One of the tracks was "Mad Scientist's Laboratory" which used a lot of S&H effects. I also used S&H effects on another track I called "Alien Abduction".
Ahh, gotcha. Any links so we (I) can hear or buy said CD? :)

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Post by Synthaholic » Wed Mar 05, 2008 12:44 am

I created the CD for fun and gave it away to family and friends. I do have some clips online, but the whole thing is too long (the mp3 files would be big since each track is 15-20 minutes long).

Graveyard Clip
Haunted House
Laboratory Clip
Alien Abduction (edit)
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Post by riccir » Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:23 am

on the sh101 its pretty good for randomly modulating the cutoff if youre using the arpeggiator (that is, they'll both retrigger at the same time, so it sounds like each note has a slightly different cutoff)

so, for syncing it with a sequencer its kind of cool, otherwise yeah it's usually pretty cheesy :lol:

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Post by Angstwulf » Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:37 am

S&H on the oscillators isn't a useful sound but, given every time that I've had a friend's kid go bugged-eyed over that sound, you'd be a cad not to have one of those patches handy.

Cool things that I have done with S&H recently:

On my Virus - set up a very quiet, ambient delay and had an LFO set to S&H to control delay times. Pretty.

On my Desktop EVO - I set up one LFO w/ S&H to control the filter on a drone tone (VCA at 100%, EG at 0%). A second LFO was set to control LFO1 time. The result was this nasty thing that could have come out of a Bernard Herman soundtrack.

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Post by Alex E » Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:37 am

I like S&H. Say whatever you want but I like getting it to a relatively slow speed and think "Cool, where will it go next?"

It's best used for adding flavor to a sound, and if you can route it to PWM, pitch when osc sync is on, or the amplitude, or anyting besides just filter cutoff or pitch on a single osc, it goes far beyond the cliche "computing sound."
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Post by MrFrodo » Wed Mar 05, 2008 1:47 am

My three favourite uses of S&H include the Styx single, "Mr. Roboto," "The Beautiful Ones" by Prince and the Moody Blues' "Talking Out of Turn." Those songs are all great examples of how VCF S&H can be used to the benefit of a song/composition.

I precieve it as "easy access to sound effects." It may not have a whole lot of applications, but it is still a useful feature.
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Post by Solderman » Wed Mar 05, 2008 2:16 am

When I used to have a JX8P, I got this gloopy, nasty sound out of it by routing S&H to filter,pitch and crossmod, all at different amounts. My band hated it. :lol:
+ 1 for subtle use on one osc for a little extra fatness/drift.
Also big agreement for being useful for routing to tons of stuff on the Virus, mostly effects related.

IMO, the S&H modulating filter cutoff is only interesting if it's in time with the notes firing, and like above, subtle is better. I'm reminded of a Brian Eno track called "Tal Coat" where he used really fast S&H modulating filter, and it's kind of annoying to me. I don't really care of it modulating pitch either, unless its crossmod or sync related, so is more just random harmonics.
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Post by JSRockit » Wed Mar 05, 2008 2:24 am

I like it.
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Post by Synthaholic » Wed Mar 05, 2008 2:29 am

Bitexion wrote:I've also heard very nice eerie effect where a slow unison pad fades in random S&H on another oscillator set to very high pitch so you get a tingling sound on top of the evil pad.
Those tingling sounds are great if they're repeating rather than random too. Such as triggered by an arpeggiator, sequence, or a user-defined LFO wave (like on the Motif). A good example of this is at the beginning of "Mr. Roboto".

And yes, I've worked with computers for most of my life, and I haven't heard one sound like that "S&H computer effect" either. Except for my first computer, a Radio Shack Color Computer, where I wrote a program that created that sound effect using a random number generator. ;) I guess I was a synthaholic years before I ever touched a synth. :shock:
Two VCO: thanks to the push rods, one can choose several forms of waves at the same time!
(from a Babelfish translation of a Jupiter-6 site)

Yamaha: Motif XS6, TX802 Roland: D-550 Alesis: A6 Andromeda

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