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Vital Moog Part 3 – Four Authentic Presets


In Part 1 we went through some of the basics of replicating the Minimoog and added more advanced features synonymous with the Mini Moog in Part 2 such as the various modulation effects you can create. We ended up with the Free Mini Moog Template here.

As previously mentioned if you can afford a Moog or other analog hardware synth it is really worth getting your hands on one to help you with your sound design.

In this part (Part 3) we use the template built in Part 2 to build 4 authentic Mini Moog sounding Presets which you can download here. This little demo below uses them (excluding drums).

Watch the Vital Moog Sounds Part 3 here..

Images of the 4 Authentic Moog Presets you can download

Moog Bee Preset Image
Moog Bee Preset Image
Moog Magic Round Preset Image
Magic Round Preset Image
Moog Surf Lead Preset Image
Surf Lead Preset Image
Moog Synth Bass Preset Image
Moog Synth Bass Preset Image

Vital Moog Template Part 2

In Part 1 we went through some of the basics of replicating the Minimoog. In Part 2 below we will add thVital Moog Template Part 1e more advanced features synonymous with the Mini Moog and cover the various modulations which really define its sound. Download the Free Mini Moog Template here. As previously mentioned if you can afford a Moog or other analog hardware synth it is really worth getting your hands on one to help you with your sound design.

Watch the video below or keep reading.

TIP 1 – The Model D has a triangle or pulse LFO which can modulate the Filter or Oscillators.

The Model D has a triangle or pulse LFO which can modulate the Filter or Oscillators. The easiest way to recreate this is to add a triangle or square wave in LFO1 to use as the modulator and then drag and drop LFO1 on to the OSC1, OSC2 and OSC3 transpose controls. To adjust the rate of the modulation see part 2 of the tip 5 below. See Tip 6 for Filter Modulation.

TIP 2 – Key Tracking

If you want to use key tracking on Filter 1 use the following values which are the values you can trigger on the Mini Moog by depressing the first, second, both or neither of the keypad control buttons.

Add Key tracking – 33% 67% or 100%

PS remember it should be a ladder filter!

TIP 3 Overload

Replicate the Model D Overload knob by adding Distortion from the Vital Effect window.

TIP 4 Use the Modulation Wheel

Drag and drop the modulation wheel on anything you are using as a modulation source. This will enable you to adjust the modulation depth just like the wheel on a real mini moog. This will enable you to really change the timbre on the fly!

TIP 5 FM Modulation

As well triangle and square modulation (see Tip 1) the Mini Moog lets you use Oscillator 3 to modulate OSC 1 and OSC 2. Remember OSC3 should use one of the following wave types: triangular, reverse sawtooth, sawtooth, square, medium pulse and narrow pulse. Try the following 2 ways:

1 Select your wave type in OSC3 then in OSC1 and OSC2 select FM < – OSC 3

2. Alternatively draw your chosen wave type as an LFO and then drag it onto OSC1 or OSC2 Transpose amounts. In the image below a reverse saw tooth (Saw Down) in LFO1 will modulate OSC1 and OSC2.

To adjust the frequency (speed of the modulation) I suggest changing the frequency to seconds as shown below and then add a Macro to adjust it.

TIP 6 Filter Modulation

The Model D lets OSC 3 modulate both the filter and OSC 1 & OSC 2 at the same time. To modulate the filter draw your OSC 3 in LFO1 and then drag LFO1 on to the Filter control. The matrix values should look like this. Combine this with creating a Filter Envelope using ENV 2 to shape the Attack Decay and Sustain of Filter 1 and you have a really powerful feature for shaping your sound.


TIP 7 Less is More

Remember the Mini Moog is a monosynth and yet created some classic sounds. Do not feel you have to use all 3 oscillators to build your sound; sometimes less is more (Listen to the surf lead in Part 3 of this series which is just a single triangle wave with a modulating Filter and some added overdrive (distortion).

TIP 8 Research

Find some old Moog patch books and see if you can recreate the sounds in Vital Synth based on the patch sheets. Listen to some classic songs which used the Moog for inspiration.

Free Moog Template

Putting all the Tips together I have created this Vital Synth template to help you to make Moog-like sounds. I hope you enjoy it. Click here for the Free Template Preset

PART 3

Click here for PART 3 coming soon which introduces some more Moog style Presets.

Vital Moog Sounds
Vital Moog Sounds

Vital Moog Template Part 1

Get hold of a Moog Synthesiser if you can; they are great for learning sound design and are a classic everyone should have. If you can’t afford one yet here are some tips to create authentic Moog Mini Moog Model D sounds in Vital. Here are some basic ideas which I expand on Part 2. In Part 3 i will cover some more Minim Moog sounds too.

Download the Free Preset which demonstrates some of the tips.

Watch the videos here or keep reading.

TIP 1 – Basic Shapes

Limit your waveforms to basic shapes. Luckily Vital already comes with a Basic Shapes waveform which you can use. To be more precise ditch the Sine Wave and add a cross between a saw wave and a triangle to OSC 1. For OSC3 replace this cross saw/triangle with a reverse sawtooth (Watch the video to see how)

For OSC1 use triangular, triangular/sawtooth (OSC 1&2), reverse sawtooth (OSC3 only) sawtooth, square, medium pulse and narrow pulse.

TIP 2 – Low Pass Filter

Add a low pass Filter. Use subtractive synthesis to alter the timbre of your sound. The Model D had one filter so limit your sound palette likewise. The Moog Model D had its own filter envelope Controls to adjust the filter overtime. This can be done in Vital by using ENV2 and dragging it onto Filter 1. A short Attack Decay and Sustain will not make much difference whereas a longer Attack and Release or both will give a distinctive Moog sweeping sound.

TIP 3 Ladder Filter

Use a Ladder Filter set to 24dB just like the Moog Model D.

Adjust the Cutoff frequency, and resonance and make sure you use a Ladder 24dB for an authentic sound. Use ENV 2 to shape the filter sweep.

TIP 4 Amount of Contour

The Model D only has 1 filter to adjust the cutoff frequency but it also has a knob to adjust the amount of the filter contour. Replicate this by adding a ladder filter to Filter 2. Add a low pass filter to adjust the overall amount of frequency which the cutoff frequency of Filter 1 can adjust. This gives the “Amount of Contour affect”. Make life easier by adjusting it via one of your Macro knobs.

TIP 5 Filter Emphasis

Add a macro to adjust the resonance of Filter 1. This is equivalent to the Filter Emphasis knob on the Model D.

TIP 6 Adjust the Pitch

Adjust the pitch of the Oscillators to create a fuller sound. All 3 Model D Oscillators could be tuned one or two Octaves higher or lower. Try slightly detuning them by a few cents one oscillator positively and the other by a similar negative amount to recreate the analog tuning adjustments that had to be done by hand either deliberately to spread the depth of sound or because the synth had not warmed up!

TIP 7 Voices

Adjust the number of voices to one as the Moog D is a monosynth.

TIP 8 Pink and White Noise

The Model D uses White Noise or Pink noise to add additional colour to its sound or as a modulation source. So try incorporating ideas using the Vital Pink and White noise samples into your sound.

TIP 9 Glide

Make use of the Glide to create some of those well known cool arpeggiated Moog leads.

Free Preset

Putting all the Tips together you should have something that looks like this. Click here for the Free Preset.

PART 2

Click here for PART 2 which introduces more advanced concepts such as Mini Moog modulation.

Vital Moog Sounds
Vital Moog Sounds

Vital Synth Organ Sound Design

I have built a pack of Organ presets which you can purchase on this website or at https://gumroad.com/vitalexp. The pack features 35 Organ Presets for Vital Synth including 37 organ wavetables. All Royalty Free for just £5! Follow the links for more details.

If you want to build your own, here are some tips for getting an authentic organ sound. Watch the video or continue reading….

You can also read my previous article on organ sound design here.

Tip 1 Understand what you are trying to build

There are many types of organs; e.g. Hammond, Farfisa, Rhodes, Vox and other electric pianos or tonewheel organs so do your research to understand what you need to build if you are aiming for an authentic sound e.g.

  • what harmonics does the original use?
  • how many voices does it have or can be played at once?
  • how is it constructed? e.g. if it uses a mechanical hammer hitting a string you may choose to build this percussive effect into your sound.
  • does it have any special features e.g. hammond organs are synonymous with the use of a rotating Leslie speaker, church organs may have bellows.
  • will its location have an effect on its tone for instance e.g. long deep reverb of a cathedral organ or wobbly sound of a fairground organ?

On top of this think about any custom effects you may wish to add (keep reading for some ideas)?

Tip 2 Understand harmonics and additive synthesis

Organ sound design is perfect for additive synthesis, think of each pipe in an organ as generating a different harmonic so if you understand the harmonics of a particular organ and know the Vital Synth wavetable editor you can individually draw the harmonics in the editor. Here’s a hint…organs such as the Hammond, Vox and Farfisa are based on the same principles as church organs.

If you want to understand the wavetable editor in more detail read my article Crash Course In Harmonics and Wavetable Editor.

Drawbar and harmonics
Harmonics and Drawbars

Tip 3 Create a strategy to replicate the use of drawbars

Drawbars adjust the volume of each pipe (or tonewheel if you think about a Hammond), so create tactics in your sound design strategy to replicate how different combinations of tone wheel drawbar positions could be created by building more complex wavetables. You are not going to be able to create perfect replicas since there are literally millions of combinations and you only have 3 Oscillators!

Tip 4 Add effects

Consider adding effects (watch the video to see some techniques in more detail) either using Vital’s effects or create your own using the LFOs:-

Tremelo effects; modulate the volume

Vibrato effects; modulate the pitch

Rotating speakers; think about how to recreate a doppler effect

Wah wah; use the EQ or filter effects

Use the Vital Synth sample feature to add additional realism (or surrealism if it takes your fancy) e.g. replicate the mechanic sounds of a church organ bellows by building a custom sample.

Tip 5 Use inbuilt Vital features

Take advantage of the rotary feature to get a rotating stereo sound (see image above)

Click on the Unison box in the advance settings and create your own voicings

Tip 6 Experiment and use your imagination to create you own custom organs

  • Try building an organ using FM synthesis
  • Think about other percussive sounds that a church organ may create and build them into your wavetable
  • Add bells to get a great modern sound (watch the video to hear some)
  • Combine an organ wavetable with something completely different
  • Use an arpeggiator to create some cool house sounds!

Tip 7 Remember your Organ will only sound good if you play it with the right technique

Listen to your favourite organ players or watch videos on organ technique to improve your own. The way the organ is played is just as important as the sound it makes!

Hear are a selection of some of my favourite players and bands-

  • Georgie Fame, Booker T, The Doors, Procol Harum, Brian Auger, Jimmy Smith, Jackie Mittoo, The Specials, ? & The Mysterians, Fuzztones…there’s too many to mention!!

In Summary

Do your homework, and get an insight about how other organs are built to get a better understanding of the history of sound design. Recreating these instruments is a great way to improve your own sound design techniques as well as really getting to understand your Vital Synth in depth.

If you haven’t got the time or inclination, then please feel free to purchase my organ preset pack with ready made wavetables and effects!

Buy Vital Organ Preset Pack
Buy Vital Organ Preset Pack

Buy Vital Synth Organ Preset Pack

Purchase below or at https://gumroad.com/vitalexp

The pack features 35 Organ Presets for Vital Synth including 37 organ wavetables. All Royalty Free for just £5!

Each preset has been handcrafted with custom macros. Watch the video below to hear all the presets and for more information about what the Preset Pack contains

Organs include:

  • Hammond Organ,
  • Farfisa Organ, Lofi Rhodes Piano,
  • Tonewheel Organ,
  • Vox Organ.

Covering multiple genres: EDM, House, RnB, Rhythm and Blues, Church, 60s garage, Funk, Soul, Ska, Reggae, 60s Soul, Mod, hip hop, dubstep etc.

Crash Course In Harmonics and Wavetable Editor

Learning about harmonics and the Vital Synth wavetable editor modifiers will give you a better understanding when creating or modifying your own wavetable.

For more details watch this video which covers:

  • understanding harmonics and Phase settings in the Vital Wavetable editor
  • creating wave shapes from scratch in Vital Wavetable Editor using the harmonic grid
  • creating Vital wavetables using keyframes
  • creating wavetables using Vital Wavetable editor in either grid or freehand mode
  • Vital Wavetable editor Settings including grid, zoom, amplitude, power
  • tips using Vital Wavetable Editor Modifier including Wave Window, Wave Folder, Slew Limiter and Frequency Filter

After watching this crash course I hope you will be able to apply the knowledge to create better wavetables.

Watch the Video or carry on reading below.

TIP: Right click to download and keep this diagram!

Overview of the Vital Synth Wavetable Editor

Wavetable Editor View

Screen Shots from the video..

Creating Basic Vital Waveshapes from Scratch

The video includes demonstration of creating various basic wave shapes using harmonics rather than the grid. Here are some you can try using the harmonic grid:

  • Sawtooth = even and odd harmonics in equal proportion. Good for lead sounds
  • Sine = single fundamental (1st harmonic). Good for sub bass
  • Square = odd harmonics each decreasing in amplitude. Quickly create it by subtracting the even harmonics from a saw tooth wave! Good candidate for pulse width modulation and bass sounds!
  • Trinagle = difficult to create using odd harmonics; try creating it in the grid instead!
  • Pulse (Sqaure wave) = again easier to draw in the grid!

With the knowledge you gain from this video I hope you will be better able to polish your own wavetables!

Harmonics and Phase diagram

How to Upgrade From Vital Plus to Vital Pro

It is easy to upgrade from Vital Plus to Vital Pro to get advantage of loads of additional Presets, wavetables and unlimited text to wavetable functionality, not to mention skins to overlay your favourite synth and more! The steps to upgrade to Vital Pro are below.

Watch the Video or carry on reading below.

Four steps to Upgrade from Vital Plus to Vital Pro

  1. Log into your account at https://account.vital.audio/
  2. Click the ‘Upgrade to Pro’ Button
  3. Make payment by Credit card or PayPal. Note the good news is that the price is discounted by your original Vital Plus payment ($25)
  4. The Upgrade is complete; packs are automatically downloaded and installed when you log in to Vital

Hints & Tips

TIP 1 For upgrading to Pro you don’t actually have to install a different version of Vital; according to Matt Tytel who wrote the amazing Vital synth, it actually downloads new content and unlocks unlimited text-to-wavetable through your account so all you need to do is restart Vital and it will auto download presets (if you’re logged in).

TIP 2 Check out the Discord Server to see the Perk!

Tip 2 Look out for the new skins available to you (go to the Advanced Tab and right click Skin to choose different skins)

Tip 3 Consider backing up your wavetables, Presets and LFOs and Samples before your upgrade ( refer to my artcle if you dont know how to do this)

Tip 4 Check you have the packs and unlimited text to wavetable access after your upgrade!

difference between Vital Plus and Vital Pro

Screen Shots of the process..

Here are the upgrade steps in pictures..

Georgio Moroder I feel love Free Preset and Midi files

Inspired by Attack Magazine’s ‘The Secrets of Dance Music Production’ I have created this Vital Preset to emulate Georgio Moroder’s Moog on the classic Donna Summer track ‘I feel love’. If you want to know more about the technique Moroder used then I recommend their book (I have received no endorsement from them). I hope you enjoy it!

The Vital Preset and Midi File

You can download 3 files: the FREE Preset here (MIDI drum here and arpeggio pattern here) but carry on on reading if you want to find out more about the Preset and how to use the midi files.

Watch the Video to hear the free Vital Preset accompanied by the drum pattern.

The Midi Files

After you have the FREE Preset. Upload the MIDI drum availble here and arpeggio pattern available here into your DAW and set to around 125 BPM. I chose the Ableton 808 Core Kit for my sound albeit the 808 wasn’t around in the 1970’s. I have provided an arpeggio Vital Moog.mid (used in the video) to be added to the VST track which is playing Vital. You can change the arpeggio to C D# F G for the ‘I Feel Love’ riff.

Manually creating the patterns

The drums track and arpeggio are below if you want to manually add them

Dance style drum pattern in piano roll
Dance style drums
Arpeggio Pattern  in piano roll bar
Arpeggio Pattern

The Macros

  1. Macro 1: adjusts the filter cutoff not just on Filters 1 & 2 but also the cutoff on some of the effects. It also adjusts the LFO 1’s smooth value from a very course value to its default value to smooth out the ‘punch’ as the filter increases.
  2. Macro 2: Adjusts the the shape of each Quad Saw so you can adjust to your own taste. If you wanted you could choose your own LFO shapes.
  3. Macro 3: As well as adjusting the resonance on the Filters, the macro also negatively adjusts the amount of distortion drive which would otherwise be too much as the resonance increases. It also increases the decay on the ADSR Envelope dynamically to give it a ‘pumping’ feeling to offset the loss of drive.
  4. Macro 4 is linked to each of the modulation buttons on LFO 4 which in turn modulates Macros 1 to 3. Basically turn Macro 4 to automatically modulate Macros 1 to 3. Turn the knob to hear the effect; its easier for you to hear than me to describe!

Hints & Tips to Make Your Own Changes

  • Try changing the waveforms in each Oscillator
  • I kept the sound Moog-like by using the ladder filter and only 3 voices. Try changing the number of voices and unison settings
  • Create you own arpeggios in your DAW

How to Change the BPM In Vital Synth Standalone Mode

It is easy to change the BPM (Beats Per Minute) when Vital is running as a VST inside a DAW but it is more difficult to change the tempo when in Standalone mode. So unless you just use it standalone running at its default 120 BPM, (equivalent to 0.500s per beat i.e. 2 beats per second) there are two main options you have to change the tempo …ignoring a) installing a DAW as an option, b) just altering the Tempo e.g. from 1/2 to 1/4 or c) placing more beats on your grid. The 2 options are…

  1. To adjust the tempo in seconds
  2. To create 2 macros to speed and slow down the Global Beats Per Second. (click here for the free Preset template)

Watch the Video to see how or carry on reading below to find out more.

Pros and Cons of using Vital Synth in Standalone for setting BPM

Changing Tempo Using Seconds

You can change the tempo using seconds. This will give you an accurate BPM.

Tempo in Seconds
  1. Click on the crotchet quarter note and choose Seconds instead.
  2. The seconds will depend on the speed you require. 0.5 seconds is equivalent to 1 beat every half second i.e. 120 beats per minute (great for house and techno music).

Unless you want to do the math…there are plenty of resources available to look up BPM to Tempo; try googling “tempo to bpm conversion”

or there is probably a “BPM to Tempo Chart” in the back of your favourite dance music book

TIP 1 The beat will also be dependent on where you emphasise your beats on the 8 x 1 grid. Take care of you may end up playing half time.

TIP 2 If you are playing triplets make sure your conversion has been done for triplets!

TIP 3 Unless you deliberately want to have differeing tempos for each LFO please make sure you update the tempo in each LFO which is cumbersome!

Changing Tempo Macros

You can assign Macros in the Global Matrix to speed up and slow down Vital’s Global BPM setting however please note this is only as accurate as you are when turning the macro buttons. It does overcome the need to individually adjust each LFO to the new tempo though.

Macros Settings for speeding up and slowing down the BPM

Add a Macro to speed the BPM up.

  1. Assign Macro 1 to Global Beats Per Minute.
  2. Set the Slider Amount to its max.
  3. Label Macro 1 ‘Speed Up’.

Add a Macro to slow the BPM down

  1. Assign Macro 2 to Global Beats Per Minute
  2. Set the Slider Amount to its minimum
  3. Label Macro 2 ‘Slow Down’.

Free Global BPM Macros Preset Template

Click here to get the template with the 2 Macros already built which you can use to experiment with.

Conclusion

Both these ways of adjusting the BPM when Vital Synth is in standalone mode have their pros and cons and unless you really cant use either a free or paid for DAW e.g. because of CPU or supportability then these 2 options work. Perhaps they are best used when you are designing draft sounds and generating ideas before crafting them in more detail once you are in your DAW where you can add extra bells and whistles using automation, arpeggiators, midi and sound effects and the like.

How to Upgrade to the Latest Version Of Vital Synth

It is easy to upgrade to the latest Version of Vital Synth in a few easy steps. This article covers what you need to know before upgrading, how to get the latest version and the install process.

Watch the Video or carry on reading below.

Before you begin

  1. Check which version you are on
    • Click the Vital logo in the top left of your Vital Synth to check your Vital Synth release version number is. (image below shows Version 1.0.7)
  1. Log into your account at https://account.vital.audio/ to check what the latest available version is.

TIP 1 Its worth checking out the Discord server or Vital Forum to keep abreast of latest version changes.

Version Number

How to Upgrade Vital to the latest Version

TIP 2 Personally I always back up my custom Presets, Wavetables, LFOS and Samples before I upgrade Vital to the latest version. For details on how to back up your files check my article How to backup your Vital Presets. Remember to back these to cloud or offline storage too!

TIP 3 Close down your Vital Synth before the upgrade process starts to avoid any error messages.

  1. Log in to your Vital Account at https://vital.audio/
  2. Download the latest Version (TIP read any release notes so you can see what has changed)
Check versions and history
Check versions and history
  1. Download the latest executable file.
  2. If the file doesn’t automatically run then you may need to click it to execute it.
  3. Follow the installation instructions wizard
  4. Below are the images for Version 1.0.8

After Installation

  1. Open Vital
  2. Click the Vital Logo and check you have the latest version
  3. Look out for any new features added in accordance with the release notes
  4. Double check your Presets etc all still work

How to Backup your Presets, Wavetables, LFOs and Samples

In this article I will show you an easy way to backup your custom Presets, Wavetables, LFOs and Samples using the Export Bank function which you can then save offline or to the cloud.

Alternatively watch the video here

Why back up your Vital Presets, Wavetables, LFOs or Samples?

As well as recovering from a hardware crash, or that moment when you have realised you have accidently overwritten your favourite Vital Preset which can’t be recreated, backing up your Presets can help you to better organise your sounds for housekeeping purposes. For example you could have a bank of sounds used for a particular recording session or a maybe a particular genre which you seldom use but don’t want to delete, or perhaps its just so that you can share your Vital patches with a friend.

How to Back up Your Vital Presets, Wavetables, LFOs or Samples

  • Select the ‘burger’ menu
  • Select the Export Bank function to backup your Presets, Wavetables, LFOs or Samples (or choose Export Preset to backup individual Presets)
  • Select the Presets, Wavetables, LFOs and Samples you want to Export (Tip: hold Shift for selecting a group of Presets or select ‘+’ to add individual Presets)
  • Enter an Export Bank name
  • NB Only samples you have stored in Users > username >Documents > Vital> User >Samples (or non pc equivalent) can be exported
  • Select Export Bank
  • Choose a location and click Save

Ok so the job is done, but do remember to back up your Export to offline / cloud storage for safekeeping!

The Export Bank is stored in the format *.vitalbank and to import it back into Vital use the Import Bank from the ‘burger menu’.

Vital Export Bank Screen
Vital Export Bank Screen

Fast way to create a simple bell using Vital FM (frequency modulation)

I have been experimenting with bells for a while using different methods in Vital to create them. So far, the easiest way I have found is using the Vital FM (frequency modulation) function. Rather than using a LFO to modulate Oscillator I have use a wavetable in OSC 2 to oscillate OSC 1 by setting the FM OSC 2 function in OSC 1.

The free Vital preset is available here

Watch the Part One of the Video here. Part 2 is also now available.

What is the FM OSC 1, FM OSC 2 & FM OSC 3 function?

FM has a ‘carrier’ frequency which outputs the sound and a ‘modulator’ which modulates the carrier to create a new sound. Vital uses FM when an LFO modulates the wavetable. The LFO (low frequency oscillator) is not audible as it is tuned below 20Hz.

The FM function in Vital sets an oscillator to be modulated by the another oscillator so you can use a wavetable to modulate another wavetable rather than an LFO. So for example if you select a wavetable in OSC 1 and set the function to FM OSC2 you are telling Vital to oscillate OSC 1 using OSC 2. So OSC 1 is the carrier and OSC 2 is the modulator.

You can have 2 Oscillators being modulated by 1 carrier or you can chain them together e.g. OSC 1 is modulated by OSC 2 and OSC 2 is modulated by OSC 3. This may sound complicated but using it to create a bell is very simple!

How to create a Vital Synth Bell using FM

To create the bell, OSC 1 will be the carrier and uses a simple sine wave. OSC 2 is the modulator and is set to a Quad Saw. There are 2 key points to create the sound.

  1. Set OSC 1 to FM OSC 2. This setting is a function found in the drop down box under the Phase Distortion knob.
  2. Turn the volume level of OSC 2 to 0 so it is not audible. Its role is just to modulate OSC 1.

What Next?

Have a look at Part 2 of the video for other ideas e.g.

  • Adding filters to help shape the sound. Experiment with key tracking, band pass filters and comb filters.
  • Add white noise to create extra ‘shimmer’ or create your own shimmer with a real or synthesised sample.
  • Add harmonic or inharmonic waves in OSC3 and modulate them with the Quad Saw in OSC 2 (Set OSC 3 Phase to FM OSC 2).
  • Add chorus and delay to give a more unnatural ring effect, or some distortion, compression and EQ to adjust the feel.
  • Add Macros so you can quickly adjust the parameters to taste.
Part 2 Next week
How to Create an FM Bell Part 2

VIDEO: Subtractive Synthesis to create a slow sweeping Vital pad sound. Plus free Preset

You can create a great Slow sweeping pad using subtractive synthesis. In this video I show you how to modify Vital’s Envelopes and Filters to create a clean sounding pad. You can get the FREE PRESET HERE

You will learn

  1. How to adjust the Envelope Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release, Hold and Delay to get a pad to slowly grow in volume and decay over time
  2. How to use a low pass filter to gradually open up the sound
  3. How a comb filter can shape the sound over time
  4. Using an LFO to adjust the volume
  5. How Key tracking can open up the filters based on the pitch of the note played
Link to Subtractive Synthesis Video
Click here to watch the Video

Use these steps to create your own pad sounds. Enjoy!

VIDEO: Text To Wavetable

Vital Synth is famous for its Text to Wavetable feature. Watch the Video here or follow the steps below. The video shows the easy steps to create the Text to Wavetable voice and shows how to add some extra effects to enhance the voices using Chorus, Delay and Compression. I then take the liberty to mash up the sound to create a unique Lead rhythm from it.

The Basic Vital Text to Wavetable Steps

  • Right Click in OSC 1
  • Text to Wavetable
  • Enter word e.g. “disco dancing”
  • Choose language
  • Hit Enter
  • Select Vocode under the Unison Control
  • Select Formant under the phase control (optional)
  • Adjust Unison Voices (optional)
  • Change LFO 1 to Saw Up
  • Drag and Drop LFO 1 on Wavetable

You are now ready to play your new Vital Synth Text to Wavetable sound. Have fun!

Text to Wavetable Tips

  • Remember to save the wavetable so you can use it with other sounds!
  • Enhance the voices using Chorus, Delay and Compression
  • See what happens when you add Formant Filters
  • Try playing the sound backwards by reversing the circle on the LFO 1 modulation anticlockwise
  • Try copying and pasting the wavetable to OSC 2 and OSC3 and repitch them or apply other modulations / effects to get weird phase effects

VIDEO: What Why and How to Map a Midi keyboard to Vital synth

Why should you assign your MIDI keyboard to Vital Synth?

Firstly, by mapping your MIDI keyboard to your Vital Synth you can control the dials on your Vital Synth using your MIDI keyboard. The advantage is you can forget about your mouse and get more creative with your playing as you can rapidly adjust parameters either in a methodical or random way to hear the impact the assigned dials will have on your Preset.

Secondly it will speed up your workflow and thirdly, it is so easy to do, why wouldn’t you do it?

WATCH THE VIDEO Watch how to assign your MIDI keyboard to Vital Synth here

The Video shows step by step instructions how to map your MIDI keyboard to Vital Synth.

How to assign the MIDI keyboard to Vital Synth PART 1

Watch the step by step video or follow the instructions below.

First decide what you want to assign:

  1. How many assignable knobs / sliders / pads / controllers on your MIDI keyboard do you have?
  2. Decide which controls on the Vital Synth you want to control
  3. Decide if you want to group multiple or individual controls to a single knob on your keyboard e.g. all 3 Oscillator Unison Voices could be mapped to a single keyboard controller
  4. Do you want to control the knobs you use most or maybe map to the controls which are in another Vital tab to save time getting to them e.g. the Effects or Advanced controls?

Once you know which controls you want to map to, you can start assigning the Vital controls to your MIDI keyboard

How to assign the MIDI keyboard to Vital Synth PART 2

  1. Select the Vital Control and Select > LEARN MIDI ASSIGNMENT
  2. Turn the dial / slider / pad on your MIDI keyboard that you want to map to
  3. Its as easy as that! You have now assigned the dial!
Learn Midi Assignment label
Learn MIDI assignment label

How to clear the MIDI keyboard assignment

The MIDI assignment will remain, even if you restart Vital unless you right click on the assigned dial in Vital and select > CLEAR MIDI ASSIGNMENT

Clear Midi Assignment label
Clear MIDI assignment label

Hints And Tips for Assigning your MIDI Keyboard to Vital

  • On my Akai MPK mini I have assigned Knobs 2 to 4 to Attach, Decay & Release.
  • I also assigned Knobs 4 to 8 to Macro 1 to 4 respectively.
  • I have left Knob 1 unassigned so I can choose what to assign it to depending on what I am working on e.g. I may assign it to quickly turn the filters ON or OFF or activate an effect.

The MPK has 8 assignable knobs which can be mapped to Vital Synth. Even better these come in banks so even more mappings are available!

It also has 8 mappable pads (but at the time of writing I haven’t been able to get the pads to work).

VIDEO: Vital Synth Macros and Examples

The Vital Synth macro feature is brilliant; my only wish is I could have more Macros! This article walks through the basics of macro functionality, and design tips and tricks. There is also a link to a video and 2 accompanying Presets with worked examples.

Visit YouTube for my video which walks through the creation of 5 different Macros.

You can download the Free Vital Presets here.

VIDEO: 5 Step by Step examples of creating Vital Synth Macros

  1. Blend Two Oscillators (Preset Part 1 & 2)
  2. Use the Vital Matrix to detune the Oscillators to add dynamic movement (Preset Part 1 & 2)
  3. Build a Macro to control the other Macros (Preset Part 1 & 2)
  4. Use LFO 1 to modulate Macro 3 (Preset Part 1)
  5. Use a Macro to control LFO 1 and enhance LFO 1 with the Mod Remap (Preset Part 2)

How to add a Vital Synth Macro

Example Macro image

Macros can be added by dragging or dropping the macro control on any other control which turns green on the Voice, Effects or Advanced screens.

Alternatively they can be added via the Matrix screen which is sometimes easier and also enables you to keep track on your various macro assignments.

The macro will then automatically adjust the value of what it is controlling when you turn the dial.

Vital Macro Basic Functionality

  • Each of the four macros can be assigned to multiple controls.
  • Each assignment is represented by a circular icon.
  • Each Circular icon is colour coded e.g.
    • GREEN or PURPLE icons represent Oscillators, LFOs and other controls on the VOICE and ADVANCED pages (the colour depends on whether other Macros have already been assigned to the same control)
    • PURPLE icons represent Macros
    • SANDY/GOLD icons are assigned to Filters,
    • Effects assignments are coloured the same as the effect e.g RED for distortion, YELLOW for flange etc.
  • Each Circular icon can be assigned a value representing the amount or level it will apply to the control it is assigned to.
  • If fully shaded in the macro amount is at its maximum value and pro rata if partially filled (like a pie chart).
  • Use the pencil to rename each Macro to remind you or people you share your Preset to what it does.
  • Double click a Circular icon / pie to remove it – take care there is no undo!
  • AVOID Creating macros with severe pitch or volume changes which could hurt ears!!
  • REMEMBER to save versions of your preset as there is no undo button!

Vital Macro Advanced Functionality

  • I recommend that you prioritise or group your macro functionality to maximise their use e.g. design them so that they can be used in combination with each other or build them in a way that more esoteric functions wont disrupt more subtle changes.
  • Enter specific values in your macros (right click > enter value, or Ctrl/Cmd + Mouse to accurately adjust the value) or adjust the pie chart value with your mouse.
  • Use the right click to avoid tabbing to the Matrix it gives you options to Enter a value, Remove, Bypass, Make UniPolar/BiPolar, Mono/Stereo
  • Use the right key to assign the macro to your midi keyboard its easy to do!
  • Values can be positive or negative. Turn on the Bi-Polar setting to assign positive and negative values.
  • Use Macros to adjust the value of another control value/parameter by dragging the Macro on to the other button. You will see a green dot in these controls like an embossed radio button to signify it can be controlled by a Macro.

Vital Matrix Screen

  • Get to know the Matrix page which will make macro assignment easier and to experiment with new target destinations.
  • Order the Matrix screen columns by clicking the title bar to sort e.g. by Source or Destination
  • Click the #No. in the first Column to temporally turn an assignment off i.e. ‘mute it’
  • Use Bipolar to send positive and negative values based on the direction of the macro knob turn
  • Right Click on the amount to Enter exact values. Zero (0) is in the middle with negative values to the left and positive values to the right.
  • Don’t forget to add Stereo effect settings for lead parts
  • Use the Morph setting to apply ‘s’ curve type modifications rather than just linear adjustments
  • Use the Mod Remap to further modulate your transformations.

My final tip is that the Matrix is a great place to reverse engineer other Vital Preset Macros to get a better understanding of the art of the possible.

Global and Transpose Snap Explained

What do the Global Snap and Transpose Functions Do?

The Vital Synth transpose and global snap functions can help to create automated arpeggios by snapping Vital’s output or your keyboard midi output to the grid. Global Snap will snap the midi keyboard outputs to the nearest note mapped in the global snap mapping, whereas the Transpose Snap will automatically map sounds generated by the Vital Synth to the keys you have mapped. I will provide details below and examples including a free arpeggiated sound preset using the transpose snap feature and a full demo how I created it.

SEE ALSO THIS VIDEO Watch a 90 second video on Youtube on how to use Transpose snap to create a simple arpeggio

FREE ACCOMPANYING VITAL PRESET for an arpeggio created by the transpose function which you can customise yourself.

Where to find the Transpose and Global Snap Functions Enlarged
Where to find the Transpose and Global Snap Functions

How to activate Transpose Snap and Global Snap

To find the Snap functionality in Vital Synth click on the keyboard dots located on the Pitch panel. Transpose snap is the default setting with the dots turning purple when selected. Global Snap is activated when the Global Snap button is pressed and the buttons turn green. Think of the series of dots as a mapping of the 12 notes on a piano keyboard between an Octave i.e C C# D D# E F F# G G# A A# B

Transpose Snap Explained

At first glance it is easy to think the buttons don’t do anything as you can switch on different combinations of buttons and when you press your midi keyboard nothing changes. However when you assign an LFO in Vital to the Pitch Transpose control it suddenly springs into action and the LFO will trigger the notes you have mapped out in the Transpose note mapping.

The best way to start is perhaps mapping out a minor triad (1st flattened 3rd and 5th shown in the image below) and then assign a triangle LFO to the pitch transpos. Slow down the tempo frequency to 2/1 so you can hear more accurately the sound you are generating. Keep your finger pressed on the C note and you will hear Vital playing the minor triad.

Transpose Snap Buttons
Transpose Snap Buttons for minor triad: 1st flattened 3rd and 5th

Whilst the mapping is based on the C Scale it will automatically transpose the LFO if you start with a different root note. Try changing key (root note) and you will hear that the triad is still correctly played.

Global Snap

Vital’s Global Snap feature will snap the midi key’s input to the nearest note that you have mapped on the Global Snap mapping no matter what note you play on your keyboard. So if you have mapped 1, 3, 5 and 7 (C, E, G, B) on the Global Snap (see picture below) no matter what key you press on your midi keyboard it will automatically snap / transpose to the nearest mapped note.

A few things to note:

  • if 2 mappings are equally spaced it will automatically resolve to the higher note. If the root note C is mapped then it transpose to the octave of c if that is higher
  • Global Snap does not transpose as you change scales and maps directly to a C Octave on the piano. It will transpose by Octave e.g. C4, C5 etc

Global Snap Key Mapping
Global Snap Key Mapping; Notes 1 3 5 and 7

When to use Vital Transpose Snap and Vital Global Snap

Transpose snap probably has more uses than Global Snap. You could use Global snap to avoid hitting ‘bum’ notes in live gigs [ Wow imagine being able to play live gigs again] or live recording in your DAW but personally I am more likely to use it with Vital’s random function or an LFO to make sure that any random notes generated are in the right key of my riff.

In addition its great for for automatically creating interesting arpeggiated sequences by playing pre-determined notes with a rhythm you have designed in your LFO.

Watch a 90 second video on Youtube on how to use Transpose snap to create a simple arpeggio

Click here to download a free Vital preset for creating arpeggios created by the transpose function…just adjust the notes in the transpose pitch and the shape of your LFO.

Vital Synth Sample Player buttons

Are you confused what each of the Vital Sample Player buttons do? In this article I describe what the Vital sample player buttons do and how they work when used in combination with each other. Selecting multiple Vital Sample Player buttons will give you a multitude of options; from playing the sample as recorded, to tempo pitching it, randomly pitching it, randomly starting it, playing it backwards and forwards and everything in between.

Vital Synth Sample player

The sample player’s capability is a great way to add sparkle to the sound you have designed but to get the best out of it you to need to understand what each button does. I describe the 4 sample player buttons below and what they sound like when used in combination and a link to a free sample to help you understand each function. At the end there are 3 beginner’s tips in readiness for a future article delving into sound design using the sample player in more detail.

Vital Synth’s 4 Sample Player buttons: What do they do on their own?

I have labelled the 4 buttons as follows:

  • Keyboard Trigger
  • Random
  • Forward Loop
  • Backwards Loop
Keyboard Trigger ButtonKeyboard Trigger: Plays sample at pitch of midi controller keyboard by altering sample tempo (slowing the sample up or down to achieve the pitch)
Random Trigger ButtonRandom Trigger: Randomly triggers sample anywhere within the sample
Forward Loop ButtonForward Loop: will retrigger the sample loop from the beginning of the loop once the loop reaches the end
Reverse Loop ButtonReverse Loop: Will retrigger the sample loop and play in reverse (backwards) from the end of the loop.
Vital Synth Sample Player functionality

Using Multiple Vital Sample Player Buttons

So now you understand the basics you are probably asking what if I choose multiple sample player buttons? The answer is there are a multitude of variations to choose and each has its own effect. You will need to decide what effect you want to achieve and then chose the right combination unless you are feeling lucky and want to just randomly select them!

Below is a table describing the combinations and what the Vital Synth Sampler will do based on the buttons you turn on and off.

Vital  sample player functionality matrix
Vital sample player functionality matrix

As you can see depending on which buttons you chose you will either be able to play the original sample or pitch it with your keyboard (remember to tune the sample first). The interesting function is that when random is switched on the sample player will start the pitch randomly based on the range of my Akai MPK mini’s Octave range setting which I was not anticipating.

Try out the Sample player settings for yourself!
In the resources folder I have included a small sample of the C major scale which you can download and insert it as your own custom sample; as its a scale it will help you identify the various functions more clearly than say a sample of your favourite pet or arpeggiated lead synth!

Try using multiple Vital Sample Player buttons to hear the multitude of sample player options; from playing the sample as recorded, to tempo pitching it, randomly pitching it and randomly starting it, playing it backwards and forwards. I suggest that you play around with each combination to fully get under the hood of its capabilities. Remember You can further modify the sample by using the pitch button controls or assigning an LFO against them (try random pulses) to completely mash your sounds up!

3 Beginner Tips using the Vital Sample Player

  1. The sample player is triggered by ENV 1 so make sure the ADSR is set up to play the length of your sample and does not cut it short unless that is what you want.
  2. Turn off the Oscillators to hear the sample clearly when first trying it out
  3. Build up your own set of samples and name them in a dedicated folder where you can choose them direct from the Sample player.

Organ With Drawbars & Free Vital Preset

My Vital Synth sound design steps to create an organ including tips for additional voicings, achieving a Leslie effect and use of advanced macros to emphasise different drawbars. Keep on reading and then for further discussion read a new article on Organ Sound design here or buy the Vital Organ Preset pack here

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FREE VITAL PRESET

Vital Organ and Drawbars

Drawbar Basics

Each Drawbar position has a different pitch and I had to choose which positions / tactics to go for in my design blueprint since there are not 9 oscillators available. I needed to consider how to potentially double up sounds to get the sound I wanted and I drew my inspiration form the legendary Yamaha CS1x Bluebook – Advanced User Guide which was the first keyboard I ever owned. There are a number of ways to create the organ sound I used a combination of additive synthesis and frequency modulation.

Draw Bar Position (pipe length)Pitch Adjustment
116′-12
25 1/3′+7
38′0
44′+12
52 2/3′+19
62′+24
71 3/5′+ 28
81 1/3′+31
91′+38

Drawbar design

Initially I decided to set the pitches of the 3 Vital Synth oscillators as follows to give drawbars 3 , 1 and 5 respectively:

  • Osc 1 Pitch 0 (drawbar 3)
  • Osc 2 Pitch minus 12 (drawbar 4)
  • Osc 3 Pitch + 19 (drawbar 5)

Using the Oct Note key on Osc 1 and Osc 3 will give the additional Pitches + 12 and + 31 being drawbars 4 and 8 so in total this will create drawbar sounds for 1, 3, 5, 4 and 8. You could choose other voicings to suit your taste.

Oscillator Design

Use basic sine waves to replicate the organ and single voices to replicate individual pipes. Leave the Unison to 1v (i.e. 1 voice) since each pipe is a single voice.

  • OSC 1
    • Basic Shape. Leave the Pitch at 0.
  • OSC 2
    • Basic Shape. Adjust Pitch to minus 12 (-12).
  • OSC 3
    • Basic Shape. Adjust Pitch to +19.
  • ENV 1
    • Leave the Envelope in its pre-set mode with a fast Attack (0 ) to help get a clicky organ sound.

The basic organ has now been set up.

Initial Organ LFO Matrix

Let the Fun Begin

The fun part is now adding various adjustments to the basic oscillators to create the organ and Leslie speaker effects. I wanted to use the LFOs to do this rather than the in-built effects where possible to try out the Vital Synth’s capabilities. Other possibilities could be using the Pan or spread functions.

  1. LFO 1
    – Choose the random pulses as a starting block then even them out as shown below



    – Assign these to OSC 2 & OSC 3 Pitch Cents adjustment control (either drag and drop or use the matrix to assign the LFO to each oscillators ‘tune’ value) to get some pitch modulation to create the basis of the Leslie speaker effect. Ensure the 2 adjustments offset each other e.g. set one to minus 0.3 and the other to + 0.3
    – Smooth LFO 1 taste by adjusting the pulses and the LFO amount in the matrix (small values are good values otherwise the organ will warble too much).
  2. LFO 2
    – Use a simple Sine wave or Triangle wave to adjust the Level of OSC 1, OSC 2 and OSC 3 to further give the impression of the doppler effect of a rotating speaker using Amplitude modulation.
    – Assign LFO 2 to OSC 1, OSC 2 and OSC 3 level knobs by drag and dropping it on the Level Knobs (or use the Matrix) and adjust the value to 1.00 in the matrix or circular control.

So now you have a basic Vital Synth organ with a Leslie effect but here are suggestions to explore some other advanced features of the Vital Wavetable Synth.

  1. Adding two additional drawbars to the voicings
  2. Emphasising the Leslie rotary effect
  3. Incorporating the modulation Wheel
  4. Simulate pulling out the drawbars
  1. Adding two additional drawbars to the voicings

You can re-pitch the exiting Oscillators to represent different drawbar pitches. But I have tried to add 2 additional drawbars (positions 4 and 8) to give 5 drawbars in total. Although this isn’t perfect it kind of works…

  • drag and drop the Oct Note located in the bottom right hand corner of the Vital Synth to OSC 1 Waveframe and OSC 3 Waveframe (or assign it via the Matrix tab). This creates additional drawbar pitches of +12 and +31 (i.e. positions 4 & 8).
  • for different drawbar voices consider changing the original oscillator voicings e.g. change OSC 2 to a Pitch of +24 so the Oct Note will also give a pitch of +36. There are more details below about assigning a macro to increase the volume of these 2 new drawbars separately.
  • In the matrix adjust the Mod Remap for these two items to a complete full rectangle (screenshot below)

    Oct Note Mod Matrix

You will hear the additional Octaves play on all notes other than each value of C. I will be interested in reading up on the manual when it comes out on this!

2. Emphasising the Leslie rotary effect

To recreate the effect of a Leslie speaker speeding up or slowing down while you are playing in realtime add macros to adjust the speeds of LFO 1 and 2.

  • Macro 1
    Assign to LFO1 Tempo
    Rename the label Vibrato 1
  • Macro 2
    Assign to LFO2 Tempo
    Rename the label Vibrato 2

Remember to adjust the max and min parameters to taste. See my final touches below to create a mechanical whirr. I set Macro 1 Tempo to about +1 and Macro 2 Tempo about +2.25

3. Incorporating the Modulation Wheel

Assign the modulation wheel to Macros 1 and 2 by dropping it on the 2 macros that have just been created so the LFO 1 and LFO 2 vibrato can be changed together using the modulation wheel

4. Simulate pulling out the drawbars for Hammond effect

I decided to emphasise the 2 2/3 layer (OSC 3 pitch 19) by assigning Macro 3 to adjust the modulation amount of OSC 1 , 2 and 3. However the key to this is that the Macro must have a positive effect on the value of OSC 3 but a negative impact on OSC 1 and OSC 2.

To achieve this either turn the amount knob (circle) in the Vital Synth Matrix counter-clockwise for the Modulation of OSC 1 & 2 and clockwise for OSC 3 or easier still just edit directly in the Matrix as below. Now when the macro is turned in the matrix view 2 green bars should move from left to right for the OSC 1 and OSC 2 Levels and the OSC3 Level should move from left to right. You should audibly hear the higher pitched OSC 3 come through the mix. I re-named Macro 3 “Hammond”.

Remember I created 2 additional drawbars above. Well to increase their level the same principle can be applied to the 2 additional drawbars. Rather than doing it directly in the matrix use Vital Synth’s drag and drop capability;

  • Drag and drop the Macro 4 selector onto the Vital Synth OCT NOTE knobs that were created earlier.
  • Rename Macro 4 ‘Drawbars’
  • Turn the ‘Drawbars’ macro and it will increase the modulation amount i.e. volume level of OSCs 1 and 3
Macros 3 and 4

Final Touches and Summary

There are other ways to create these sounds but I wanted to explore some of the main features of the Vital Synthesizer to get under its bonnet, so here are some other ideas and suggestions.

  • Add a Box Fan in the sampler to add a bit of mechanical sound that the old organ and speaker would make as it whirred around
  • Turn on the VEL TRK keyboard velocity tracking to register those palm slapping glissandos!
  • Consider automating the stereo spread key as another away of getting a Leslie effect
  • Add the Reverb or Chorus effect to give an additional timbre; you could even assign them to a macro. I recorded my sample with the Chorus Cutoff being modulated by LFO2
  • Consider adding distortion for a dirtier sound
  • Play with panning and spread to get similar Leslie tremolo effects
  • Use EQ in your DAW to take off the high and low ends

I hope you have enjoyed this article. Please let me know and subscribe to get future updates!

Buy Vital Organ Preset Pack
Buy Vital Organ Preset Pack

Vital Reese Bass Design & Free Preset

For my reese bass sound I used a combination of FM and subtractive synthesis to give a wobbly bass.

You can DOWNLOAD THE FREE VITAL PRESET HERE

Woobly Reese Bass accompanied with drums

The basic steps are below

  1. OSC 1
    • choose a Pulse width wave detune the pitch to -12 (i.e. 12 semitones being an octave lower). To add extra depth to the final sound detune the pitch further by -3 cents (this is found to the right of the Pitch control)
    • choose your preferred number of voices (I went for 2) and modify the detune to about 5%. A lower number of voices and detune setting will help the bass to cut through in the final mix.
  2. OSC 2
    • choose Basic shape & detune 2 octaves (-24 semitones) and adjust the pitch by +3 cents to offset the detune of -3 cents in OSC 1
  3. ENV1
    • Use the preset ADSR so the bass reaches full volume immediately before it sustains and decays

Now you have a basic bass start manipulating and shaping the sound and create a ‘wobble’.

  1. Filter 1
    • Filter 1 will be used create a wobble to the bass using a low pass filter (analog 12dB)
    • Increase the drive to taste and keytracking to open up the filter more or the lower notes but less on the higher notes by turning the knob anti clockwise.
  2. LFO 1
    • LFO 1 will be used to modulate the filter to give the wobble.
    • Choose a triangle LFO and drag LFO 1 onto Filter 1 to control its sweep.
    • Remember to set the LFO to Sync mode to Sync with your DAW’s tempo otherwise the wobble will be out of sync with your drums
  3. Filter 2
    • Adjust filter 2 to taste I went for an analog 24DB low pass filter to create a steeper cut-off.

The finishing touches: effects and sound shaping to your taste..

  1. If desired, add Glide, Octave Scale and legato to get the pitch glide between notes
  2. Adjust the Spread; mono is probably better.
  3. Try assigning Random 1 to filter 1 and 2 to add nuances to your sound
  4. Add distortion and flange as required
  5. Consider adding macros to control the distortion drive & mix or the flange feedback and Dry Wet sounds
Reese bass settings
Wobbly Reese Settings

An introduction

This year has had a massive impact on what we do and how we do it and given plenty of us time to reflect on what we want to do with our lives. Prior to lockdown I had already planned to leave my 9 to 5 job, get married and go travelling…. so 4 cancelled trips and a cancelled wedding later I had plenty of time on my hands and decided to get more serious with music production.

I invested in a course at the School of Electronic Music in my hometown of Manchester and that really solidified my decision to invest more time and energy in electronic sound production. I can’t rate their course highly enough.

At the same time I discovered the Vital Wavetable Synth; a cool, amazing low cost wavetable synth. So I thought what better than to give my sound production and design focus by creating a blog to publish and share my sound creations, hints tips and the like.

I hope it will be a journey from simple sound design to more complex challenges as I develop my understanding. I also hope to cover other subjects such as workflow best practice and the like as I develop my own best practice.

Finally to be clear I know there is a great users official forum hosted by Vital Audio and I am not trying to compete with this and I would like to thank Matt Tytel for making such an amazing product and making it available free. So THANKS Matt!

If there are any subjects or sounds you would like me to address, please let me know! In the meantime I will start with some FM and subtractive synthesis while I get to learn more about the wavetables themselves!

Thanks for taking the time to read this and please come back soon to hear my first wobbly reese bass and my first organ which I will document as soon as I can!