Friday, 7 November 2008

Analogue vs Digital

So, for fun I wanted to do something with my currently extremely limited modular: I patched 2 ADSR's from my A-143-2 into self-trigger mode, with their speeds set to high. This creates two oscillators with a waveform which goes from saw-wave, to triangle and into ramp. Then I ran them into my passive ring-mod. The output was recorded while I tweaked away at it.

Then I decided to go crazy, I put the soundfile into a track in Ableton Live and set the sample's playback setting to complex, I recorded tempo-changes to create fft'y time-stretches where needed. Next up was dtblk, binding settings to a midi-controller, made automating it a really good time. The end result was bounced to a new file, as I wanted a fresh start.

Next up was loads of filtering, using PSP Nitro, Oligaric, Arcdev Cyclotron and much more. This was done in parallell, in order to create more movement in the sound.


If you're wondering how I get it to integrate well with the modular sound, then I can give you some pointers.

1. Always work in 96 Khz and 24 or more bits, to avoid aliasing at all times, especially when working with recorded modular material! Then when all processing is finished, you can use some nice resampler, like the one by izotope which is available inside Audiofile Engineering's Wave Editor, for mac users, Adobe Audition's resampler isn't too bad either. Doing it this way will create a highly vivid result.

2. Automate

3. Automate

4. Automate, I really can't stress this enough, without movement, even if it's hard to hear it, effects and such which are static is what a lot of people associate with a digital sound.

5. Use your DAW and plugins to do things which aren't possible in the analogue world (why try to make your computer something it's not?), ideally, use a modular software, such as Plogue Bidule as a modular effect to control these plugins. Plogue Bidule can be utilized with multiple inputs and outputs to create extremely complex routings.

6. NEVER, and I mean NEVER, synthesize a waveform on a computer unless it's meant to have digital characteristics, a highly trained ear simply tells it from an analogue one instantly, unless it's a painstakingly accurate emulation, like d16-group's phoscyon, but it is the only example of an analogue emulation that has actually tricked one of my friends ;-)

No comments: