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Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares

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sorohanro
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Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 01:57 PM Reply

Hi everyone

As you know me for quite a while, I'm a jazz person, but recently as a job, I got to teach about computer music production and people were interested in...? can you guess ? right, DUBSTEP. So, I had to research, learn and "do my homework".
I'm thinking that a thread where we can share tips & tricks specifically on this style can be useful (will be useful for me at least).
Let's try to keep it clean, no personal attacks, no "I hate dubstepz" and share in a organized style, put a tytle as "mixing trick", "massive tutorial" or similar, depending of subject.

So far I got several Things to share:
Mixing technique

To keep low frequencies consistent, you may try to put a low cut filter to you "wub" (wobble bass synths), cut the bass out and then put on all track another bass that double all the bass lines, with a cleaner sound, less aggressive but more "bassy".
This works well especially if you have several different wobbles and you use as main bass a simple sine sound.

Instruments

I seen that NI Massive is one of the most popular instruments for wobbles and as well as for leads.
Not everybody can afford this, so, I stumbled upon several free synths that can make a good job with wobbles.
Here's a collection of synths "developed with dubstep and drum and bass specifically in mind". Tried those myself (I might make a demo song soon) and beside the impressive interface there are some really cool features.
ITCHY SYNTHS - VST

Here comes another one, one of my favorites. With envelope generators that you can sync to DAW bpm or draw your envelope shape using your mouse, wobble sound can easily be made from scratch.
Genobazz 2
Out of fun, I made even a wobble preset (well, can be improved but it's just a start). Here on Mediafire:
Wubb bass 1 - tempo sync at quarter note
Wubb 2 - same sound, tempo sync at eighth note

Buoy
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 01:59 PM Reply

Dubstep is my favorite band.


aka SBB! I'm not on Newgrounds anymore, but you can find me here:
Youtube | Soundcloud | Facebook

LiquidOoze
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 02:09 PM Reply

For the people who aren't good with downloading/purchasing VSTs, there's still a lot you can pull off with just 3xOsc. If you use the build-in LFO on the cutoff you can already get a decent wobble. Adding a bitcrusher like Fruity Squeeze would totally do the trick.


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Syztm
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 06:08 PM Reply

At 5/20/12 02:09 PM, LiquidOoze wrote: For the people who aren't good with downloading/purchasing VSTs, there's still a lot you can pull off with just 3xOsc. If you use the build-in LFO on the cutoff you can already get a decent wobble. Adding a bitcrusher like Fruity Squeeze would totally do the trick.

I would like to add another trick to that. By adding a Free Filter and creating an automation clip for the filter cutoff, you can use ''Edit Events'', and then Alt+O to create a custom LFO, which can be edited freely. You can make some more complex ''wobbles'' with it, and be quicker and more efficient while doing so.


New tune: Yag

jpbear
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 06:10 PM Reply

RULE #1

Never use the word wobble.

never
sorohanro
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 07:03 PM Reply

At 5/20/12 06:10 PM, jpbear wrote: RULE #1
Never use the word wobble.
never

Rule #0
Never say never without giving an alternative.

so we'll call "wobbles" bunnies from now.

I listened some of your music and your wo...er... bunnies sound very clear and sort of "abrasive". How you do that, is the EQ or the patch programming ?

Meanwhile:
Massive Tutorial the infamous "yoy" sound (one way to achieve it)
Doctor P Yoi Tutorial (Massive)

jarrydn
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 08:21 PM Reply

steer away from using LFOs, generate your movement with envelopes and note retriggering instead.

jpbear
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 08:43 PM Reply

At 5/20/12 07:03 PM, sorohanro wrote:
At 5/20/12 06:10 PM, jpbear wrote: RULE #1
Never use the word wobble.
never
Rule #0
Never say never without giving an alternative.
so we'll call "wobbles" bunnies from now.

You can call a bass patch a wobble or wub only when the dominant feature is a resonant moving low pass filter. That said, I cant remember the last time I used a moving low pass filter lol.


I listened some of your music and your wo...er... bunnies sound very clear and sort of "abrasive". How you do that, is the EQ or the patch programming ?

Massive into vocodex, resampling if not content with your sound there.

cool filters at each step.

http://www.facebook.com/youfeedme/posts/10150761733858361

sorohanro
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 09:39 PM Reply

At 5/20/12 08:43 PM, jpbear wrote: Massive into vocodex, resampling if not content with your sound there.

Cool trick. I have to try it. Thanks :)

http://www.facebook.com/youfeedme/posts/10150761733858361

As I half agree with this point, there is a point in discussing techniques. YouTube tutorials are uni-directional while a discussion is a dialog (sometimes).
As for motivation, mine are two:
1-keep my job as I know what to teach.
2-combine dubstep techniques with other kind of music.
I think mixing a wo...sorry, a bass synth patch with a moving filter (and low frequencies filtered, so it's not a bass patch anymore) can liven up a sampled brass section in soundtrackish music, or alternating it with a heavy riffed guitar can add more "grittiness" to it. Tried it with jazz, didn't work too well but maybe I should try more...

dj-Jo
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 20th, 2012 @ 10:59 PM Reply

At 5/20/12 08:21 PM, jarrydn wrote: steer away from using LFOs, generate your movement with envelopes and note retriggering instead.

Say I use FL Studios with Massive..

Envelopes... Like Automations attached to an effect in the VST used for a dubstep synth?
And what do you mean by note retriggering?

Sorry but I never really knew a lot of musical vocabulary when it comes to DAW use haha
I've been using LFO's and i think it's time for a change.


I suck at grammer ^ can't you tell?
Yoooooouuuutuuubeeeee

midimachine
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 12:08 AM Reply

At 5/20/12 10:59 PM, dj-Jo wrote:
At 5/20/12 08:21 PM, jarrydn wrote: steer away from using LFOs, generate your movement with envelopes and note retriggering instead.
Envelopes... Like Automations attached to an effect in the VST used for a dubstep synth?
And what do you mean by note retriggering?

envelopes are envelopes. attack, decay sustain release. note retriggering = lots of shorter notes instead of one long note.

you can use automation, too. you can use slide notes on fruity native plugins (wasp, sytrus etc.) in lieu of filter automation as well. but yeah, LFO's are hella ungainly if you want tight rhythmic filtering.

also don't use 3xosc for any of your main leads/bassline. it's an incredibly versatile synth, but it uses sampled waveforms which don't sound very good.


p.s. i am gay

The-iMortal
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 02:32 AM Reply

OhmForce Ohmicide is a fantastic distortion plugin for dubstep growls.

there's my contribution.
Nechura
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 02:45 AM Reply

Creating a sidechain for your snare aswell as your kick can help it to stand out more. You can do this by sending every mixer track you want affected by the snare's sidechain to a single track then sidechaining it's volume with a controller to the snare.

LiquidOoze
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 02:57 AM Reply

Here's an epic wobble/bunnie patch I made myself, and used in some of my songs. I'm not posting the .ksd here because I know that then half of the downloaders can't open it.

Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares


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gavkay21
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 04:31 AM Reply

At 5/21/12 02:57 AM, LiquidOoze wrote: Here's an epic wobble/bunnie patch I made myself, and used in some of my songs. I'm not posting the .ksd here because I know that then half of the downloaders can't open it.

is that a "ya ya ya yoi yoi yoi" bass. Thats what it looks like at first glance

LiquidOoze
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 05:22 AM Reply

At 5/21/12 04:31 AM, gavkay21 wrote:
At 5/21/12 02:57 AM, LiquidOoze wrote: Here's an epic wobble/bunnie patch I made myself, and used in some of my songs. I'm not posting the .ksd here because I know that then half of the downloaders can't open it.
is that a "ya ya ya yoi yoi yoi" bass. Thats what it looks like at first glance

Well the cool thing is that when you play a note on C4 or higher, it sounds like a really wet wobble (like the ones in 'Daft Punk - Prime Time Of Your Life' and 'Marting Solveig - Ready 2 Go' for example), but when you go down an octave you get in the 'yui' range, and another octave lower will get you in that nast 'yoi' range. I have a song in which I use this wobble a lot but I can't risk a ban by putting the link here.


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jpbear
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 11:13 AM Reply

At 5/21/12 02:45 AM, Nechura wrote: Creating a sidechain for your snare aswell as your kick can help it to stand out more. You can do this by sending every mixer track you want affected by the snare's sidechain to a single track then sidechaining it's volume with a controller to the snare.

essential to clean mixing

Usernamemyarse
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 11:29 AM Reply

Ive found that granular synths can give some awe-inspiring drops and wobbles (Check out the music from Eskmo and Amon Tobin for some examples) and im still working on finding some good grooves for club-oriented dubstep, of course, using the typical dubstep kick-snare combo @ 128 bpm seems to have some good results.


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Breed
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 21st, 2012 @ 11:31 AM Reply

FM8 is probably the most popular FM synth for dubstep so not a bad venture at all. FM synthesis is a bit of a pain to get a hold of but well worth it. Ultimately as everyone finds out though, its not about the synth per se.

A lot of great techniques in making reeses for DnB or neurofunk apply to dubstep as well. Resampling over and over can create really interesting distortions or other processing on basslines for example. I also agree that LFO's should be avoided. You can get much more interesting shape with an automation although if youre using ableton or another program that doesnt have automation shapes it can be a bit of a pain.

Morphing is pretty key to getting an interesting sound. Filter automations are pretty standard, but really anything is on the table as long as it doesnt lose its power in the process to much(I would also try fiddling with pitch, distortion, flange, etc). Layering basslines allows you to do more complicated morphs without losing that power. Having a sub bass line is key to getting that very powerful sound.

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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 22nd, 2012 @ 12:32 PM Reply

A requirement for teaching dubstep is to describe all your basses with a nice adjective before hand. It is recommended to use a combination of words such as dirty ass bass. If you're feeling creative make up words! Ex:sick as fuck chizzle fizzle bass sizzle.

Swearing optional but strongly recommended.

sorohanro
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 22nd, 2012 @ 05:29 PM Reply

At 5/21/12 02:32 AM, The-iMortal wrote: OhmForce Ohmicide is a fantastic distortion plugin for dubstep growls.

there's my contribution.

Well, if you are on tight budget, or no budget at all, here is a free multiband distortion that can partly replace Ohmicide.
http://www.vst4free.com/free_vst.php?id=556
TriDirt
Features:
* Adjustable crossover frequencies with linked knobs.
* 7 different waveshapers for variety of sounds.
* Post filtering option (PF) applies low pass filtering at first and second band.
* Balance control applied before waveshaping for wide stereo effects.
* All bands and post filtering don't use processing power when inactive.

The-iMortal
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 23rd, 2012 @ 03:29 AM Reply

At 5/21/12 11:13 AM, jpbear wrote:
At 5/21/12 02:45 AM, Nechura wrote: Creating a sidechain for your snare aswell as your kick can help it to stand out more. You can do this by sending every mixer track you want affected by the snare's sidechain to a single track then sidechaining it's volume with a controller to the snare.
essential to clean mixing

I've never explored sidechain compression. After these posts, I feel I have to do some research and give it a try.

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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 23rd, 2012 @ 08:49 AM Reply

At 5/23/12 03:29 AM, The-iMortal wrote: I've never explored sidechain compression. After these posts, I feel I have to do some research and give it a try.

Sidechain is ESSENTIAL. Also, to get a little growl, I've had luck attaching some guitar distortion efx to the bass.


no, really...DON'T CLICK THE PIC

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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 23rd, 2012 @ 12:07 PM Reply

At 5/23/12 03:29 AM, The-iMortal wrote: I've never explored sidechain compression. After these posts, I feel I have to do some research and give it a try.

Sidechain is a must for every dubstep/dance song.


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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 24th, 2012 @ 02:22 AM Reply

Far out, you guys aren't kidding. So THAT is how French producers deliver that punch. I cannot believe I have not found out about sidechain compression till now.

I'm not home at the moment, but when I am, I'm going to try this tutorial out.

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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 24th, 2012 @ 05:43 AM Reply

YES... YEEEEEEEEES!

Sidechain is the answer I've needed for so long. Thank you guys so much. This has totally revolutionized my music!

+1 for NG audio community

LiquidOoze
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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 26th, 2012 @ 08:41 AM Reply

Also, in NI Massive, if you put a scream filter on any oscillator/waveform combination and put a random LFO on the scream knob, you can create badass synths too.


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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 26th, 2012 @ 08:57 AM Reply

At 5/26/12 08:41 AM, LiquidOoze wrote: Also, in NI Massive, if you put a scream filter on any oscillator/waveform combination and put a random LFO on the scream knob, you can create badass synths too.

Amen to that, I like to mix a Low-pass and the scream filter, i generally put an LFO on the lowpass and an envelope on the scream filter just to put some extra movement.


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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 30th, 2012 @ 03:59 AM Reply

My two cents: I've never touched Massive, too expensive, I use ES2 for all my synths. You can get a very interesting sound by formant shifting synths I've found, so maybe that'll help out all the poor folks like myself.


Best be knowin, MoonBurn be postin'.
Download my EP for free RIGHT NOW

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Response to Dubstep Tips & Tricks & Shares May. 30th, 2012 @ 10:27 AM Reply

At 5/30/12 03:59 AM, AKACCMIOF wrote: My two cents: I've never touched Massive, too expensive, I use ES2 for all my synths. You can get a very interesting sound by formant shifting synths I've found, so maybe that'll help out all the poor folks like myself.

Yeah, you really dont need expensive synths if you have the know-how.


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