Synthesizers and their (true) sound

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
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Re: Synthesizers and their (true) sound

Post by briandc » Fri Feb 19, 2016 9:10 pm

pflosi wrote:Seems that this thread indeed was helpful to you! The recognition of the importance of modulation is key indeed, although it is also only a model in the sense that it highlights some (important) aspects, while eclipsing others. Like a floodlight pointed to an object. But at least "modulation" takes into account the various forms of interdependence between single functions. Think of the functions as building blocks for a bigger picture.

To quote Allen Strange:
In the introduction to [i]Electronic Music: Systems, Techniques, and Controls[/i], Allen Strange wrote:
  • Theorem 1: Anything which can be measured can be translated into an analogous voltage.
  • Theorem 2: Voltages may be changed by:
    1. Addition to another Voltage
    2. Subtraction by another voltage
    3. Inversion
    4. Integration
    5. Quantization
    6. Multiplication by another voltage
  • Theorem 3: In an ideal situation within the electronic media, any desired musical parameter may be determined and controlled by any voltage.
  • Theorem 4: Given theorems 1, 2 and 3, you are free to create as you wish!
Couldn't say it any better myself. It describes all of it. Basically the whole world of audio engineering.

Since I was unashamedly posting self-promotion already, maybe you want to check my Monthly Patching thread which is devoted to exploring unusual routings to create fun timbres. With extensive descriptions :thumbright:

Cheers :drinks:
Thanks for the link to your patching work. I'll take a look at it from time to time, for sure! (already started!)
Any "patch-work" being done is always nice to read about! :)

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Re: Synthesizers and their (true) sound

Post by tom Cadillac » Sun Feb 21, 2016 7:50 pm

I'v been experimenting with some very basic drone synths recently - and adding wild effects to make them interesting - using things like 2 alesis inekos where I can create some original sounds and some wild realtime modulations using the effect knobs. Its a primitive style but very satisfying - the frostwave sonic alienator is another favourite - you can use the switch that alters the chain of effects in it ( filter v decimator) to produce rhythmic effects and kind of play it like an evolving beat. Hope that makes sense. You can check some of the results on my soundcloud page - 'rainbow melt' makes use of the rainbow machine (from earthquaker devises I think) :D
"On the following day , the sorcery undespairingly continued: I changed my series, chose other sequences, cut other lengths, spliced different progressions, and hoped afresh for a miracle in sound." (Stockhausen)

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Re: Synthesizers and their (true) sound

Post by cornutt » Thu Mar 03, 2016 10:20 pm

I tend to regard the entire recording or sound reproduction chain as fair game. 8-) This stems from the era I grew up in, when the whole "studio is an instrument" philosophy was taking hold e.g. Pink Floyd (although there were certainly others before them who did it). So to me there isn't really a distinction between the "instrument" and the "effects"; it's all part of a continuum.

On a polyphonic synth, you can sort of draw a distinction between the synth engine and the effects by defining anything that is replicated for each voice (such as filters) as being part of the synth engine, and anything that works on the composite mixed output of all of the voices as an effect. But it's not hard to imagine taking something that's usually thought of as an effect, such as chorus, and replicating it so that each voice has its own. So now "chorus" is not necessarily an effect; it depends on where it is in the chain. And besides, even this distinction disappears when you look at monosynths. Paraphonic synths put a (the) filter after the voice mixer. And some guitar synths have "hex fuzz", where each string has its own distortion circuit.
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