Good patch learning sources (Sub 37)

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Good patch learning sources (Sub 37)

Post by greentank » Sun Jul 05, 2015 2:14 pm

New Sub 37 owner, and first analog synth. I also own a Korg Kronos 2 and a Nord E5, but they're different animals, right?

So after a day of playing around, I'm realizing I need help. I started by taking some patches and trying to copy them in blank spaces...learned a lot, but have become frustrated at the same time. I'm not understanding the roles/differences of the two envelopes, and how they relate to the Mod EG Time settings...and many other things.

Until there are some good Sub 37 tutorial videos on youtube, are there some good general tutorials on creating sounds and explaining the envelopes? Videos preferred, but paper works too.

My sounds don't sound as rich, buttery as the presets, and I'm really anxious to get to where I hear a sound and can quickly construct something close to it.

Thanks for the help - hopefully I'll be more of a positive contributor in the future.

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Re: Good patch learning sources (Sub 37)

Post by JavaLaurence » Mon Jul 06, 2015 1:34 pm

Not long ago (few months) I browsed Amazon to look for books that do exactly that (so no video, but text and diagrams, screenshots), and I did come across a title that claims to offer that knowledge. From what I remember - I didn't buy it - it makes fairly synth-neutral assumptions, like your animal has at least two oscillators, a filter, an LFO, and EG, stuff like that. But it seemed to concentrate on trying to imitate conventional instruments like violin, trumpet, guitar. Still.. I think it could be a useful start. YMMV

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Re: Good patch learning sources (Sub 37)

Post by GregVDS » Mon Jul 06, 2015 1:54 pm

I wrote this in answer to a similar question a few months ago:

What you can do is select an empty preset 'Init Preset', and move slightly one knob at a time, trying to find the setting that reproduces the sound of the init preset.
When you're done, your panel will be set up for a very simple synth sound, and you'll know more or less why and what does each knob. From there, go on and explore.
Try to go from the OSC section, to the MIXER, then FILTER, then to the ENVELOPES. Once you managed that, go and play with the MOD section, GLIDE and ARP. I found it easier to learn the synthesis and the Sub37 following that path.

All the best,

Last edited by GregVDS on Mon Jul 06, 2015 2:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Good patch learning sources (Sub 37)

Post by GregVDS » Mon Jul 06, 2015 2:12 pm

F (Filter) envelope copes with the opening/closing of the filter. Let's play with this one later.
A (Amplitude) envelope copes with the amplitude, or amplification of the sound in itself. It carves in time the sound. As such, this is the most important parameter to try and mimic this or that instrument.

Let's go through ADSR (Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release)

Attack is the TIME the note takes to go from no sound to maximum volume when you hit a key.
Decay is the TIME the note takes to go from maximum volume to sustained volume.
Sustain is the VOLUME at which the note is kept as long as you hold the key.
Release is the TIME the note takes from sustain volume to no sound when you release the key.

Some combinations aren't very impressive: A to 0, D to 0, S to 0, R to 0: no sound or a very very very short tick.
Let's put Sustain to the max ok? That's it, full simple gate, hit a key = sound, hold a key = sound, release the key = silence.
Now that's quite harsh, surely if you try to approximate some real instrument (strings, organ, flute, whatever).
Maybe add some attack time, some release time at first. That's smoother already. Pads are somewhere there.
Now, some sounds need percussive characteristics, try and add short decay and lower a bit sustain. Now the note begins by a kind of volume burst, then stabilize at a lower cruise level.
Some sounds simply need to decay in time, whatever you hold with the keys. That's with sustain level at zero and release at some value long enough to hear the decaying note.
But to hear a note, all the three other TIME parameters need to cumulate in an audible note that takes some time to disappear.

Well, if you can imagine the curve all these params draw in time (simple two axis diagram, in Y, volume, in X, time),
you can also imagine using such a curve to drive the opening/closing of the filter. This helps the carving of the sound, by letting you colour (darken, lighten) the note during its time presence. A bit abstract at first, but you'll get to it playing with the settings.

Filter cutoff knob and sustain knob define both the min and max, EG AMT in the Filter section defines the amount of influence the Filter envelope has, and also the sense of its influence (positively or negatively). These two supplementary steps add some difficulty to grasp simply the filter envelope, at least for me.

When you manipulate the Filter envelope, maybe first use an Amplitude envelope of the simplest type, A = 0, D = 0, S = full, R = 1 or 2 secs, so you hear the change you do.

All the best,


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