Creating a Nice Basic House Pluck Synth with NI FM8

If you produce house music, you already know about the eternal quest for the ideal synths for your music. This FM8 tutorial shows you how to craft your own pluck synth in just a couple of minutes!

A house style pluck synth is a very simple sound to accomplish in FM8. The real fun begins once you have the basics down and start to experiment with this knowledge. Native Instruments really put together a perfect tool for sound design when they released the latest version of FM8. It’s quite remarkable what you can do with just one operator and a filter, as seen in this helpful tutorial video.

To begin, route Operator F through Operator Z, which is the main filter in FM8. This way the entire sound being generated by Operator F is processed before it reaches the main output line. Operator F is loaded with a Sawtooth waveform and is fed back into itself to generate some grit and more character to work with.

Next step is the shaping of the filter envelope. Once you have the delivery you like, you can add in a little noise modulation by routing Operator X into Operator Z directly. This introduces noise into the mix prior to the sounds making it to the main output. Increasing the Release of the Amplitude Envelope on the Easy/Morph window allows to sound to ring out slightly without having to disturb the envelope of the filter envelope you have already drawn in.

Moving now to the Effects window, the Psyche/Delay effect is inserted and provides a lot more depth and movement to the sound. Now it’s really taking on the classic house style sound. Some Reverb gives the sound more space to move around and develop in, as well as ring out. The main cutoff knob in the Operator Z interface is the key point of modulation here if you wish to automate the sound’s delivery over a period of time, either through automation or manual manipulation.

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Category: FM8 Tutorials