Creating Custom Claps with FM8
Before anything else gets set up, the total number of Unison voices is increased to two, the synth is set to run on Mono mode and the Detuning is turned off. Now that these small changes have been made, we are ready to begin designing the core of our clap sound in the FM Matrix. This type of sound relies heavily upon the Noise/Saturation operator (Operator X), so this is routed directly to the main output strip right away. Operator F is also used, and is running the default Sine wave. This too is routed to the main output strip. Operator E is used as a Modulator, and is running a 10th Formant waveform. Make sure that the Key Sync feature is enabled on each of the operators to ensure consistent delivery of sound.
Now that the basic noise has been programmed in the FM Matrix, we can begin shaping the sound with the Envelopes. Since all three operator’s will have similar envelope curves in the end, you can save a little time by using the Link feature initially. Once they have been set up with a basic pluck curve, you can unlink them and begin tweaking them individually until the sound behaves the way you like. The envelope for Operator X will have a longer release than the others to allow for a more realistic clap behavior.
The last step of the process is to bring the clap to life with a few effects units. An Overdrive unit provides the distortion and grit. A Shelving EQ allows for the bottom end to be removed and a Peak EQ lets us accent some of the mids that expose some more clap-like character. A touch of Reverb and the sound is complete! You can experiment with some different waveforms loaded into your operators to achieve your own custom claps!