dsp blog for xoxos.net

the badness of badness

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a few times a year i peep into the samples forum at kvr. while i have a fair (going on 2 decades online) collection, i rarely have them on a machine because i never use samples..

there are few sample products i find much application for besides removing capital from ambitious and inexperienced persons. one is percussion.

and often, as i have today, one encounters a collection of synthetic percussions.

while i am quick to condemn many participants in music software for their depraved cruelty towards living and breathing creatures, i prefer not to judge those who may simply be acting out of the same enthusiasm that such persons seek to exploit, let’s barge ahead anyway.

so: if you are thinking of releasing a pack of synthetic percussion (aah, memories..) allow me to inform you ahead of time that 95% of the content is likely total cack, a waste of everyone’s time (even your experience since you were thinking about how to make other people like things for money the whole time).

most synths do not have envelopes steep enough to use for patching kicks. the exponential contour of analogs simply cannot create an attack and release in one stage.

if you are adamant about this, may i suggest listening to a few vince clarke productions as he has an aged mastery of patching ‘real’ percussion (eg. snares). here’s a big hint if you can’t – think short. big, flabby synth snares with a long tail may sound like a neat synth patch, but the buzzyness you liked is useless as a snare and the attacks aren’t developed enough to truncate. those sounds will *never* be used in anyone’s music.

the hats are useless as well. when patching, you decided the timbre was noisy, and different from white noise, but eg. many are too grainy because of your focus on “interesting noise” when patching.

(then again.. i noticed the other day the 909 oh or crash ROM sounds like the stick hit twice.. never noticed that in the post filtered sound).

if you really don’t have a good idea of what a utilitarian synth percussion patch is like, aim for brevity. that will help you focus on improving what’s there.

same response to just about every synth pack i’ve heard since i released mine (which were only marginally more general purpose ftr) (except for the straight-off-the-box 808909 collection stuff.. they’re applicable but of course it’s straight profiteering and ought never be recompensed).

one of these days i’ll show them all. people rarely comment on percussion in my tracks, it’s probably because they’re patched so well (maybe not so much my kicks). eg. if i go through years of tracks and record all the hihat patches, people would probably think most were processed 909s et c.

i’m thinking of all the times i’ve heard better synthetic cymbals (ok, percussions in general) than mine. none of those times are associated with people who sell samples. the most useful synth hats in these collections are generally the highpassed synced stuff vince et al. use, which is where we get into that depravity thing again. synth1 and such are free.. there’s no need to buy a sample of a highpassed synced osc.

gosh! the extreme rightness of what i say, huh.


Written by xoxosvst

May 4, 2013 at 8:17 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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