Making an FM8 Growl Synth – Part 2
In the second video tutorial of the FM8 Growl series, we continue to explore the fundamentals behind Skrillex’s famous growl. This time adding the Filter (Operator Z) and the Noise/Saturator (Operator X) into the mix to bring out a nice ringing sound. Make sure when you are finished to save the patch because in the next tutorial we will continue to expand the FM8 Growl.
To kick off this FM8 Growl, turn on Operator F and set it as a 10th Formant Waveform, and turn on Operator E as a PWM Ramp Mod. In the FM Matrix, route Operator E to feedback on itself and to modulate Operator F, and route Operator F to the output. Turn on Operator Z and route it to the output as well. At this time you may also route Operator F to modulate Operator Z. Operator Z will act as filter that will be used to control the Cutoff, Spread, and Resonance of the FM8 Growl.
Next, turn on Operator D and assign it as a Square Waveform with a ratio of 7. In the FM Matrix, assign Operator D to also modulate Operator F. By adjusting the Amplitude of Operator D you can start to hear the digital ringing sound that adds a bit of harshness to the FM8 Growl.
Finally, we will turn on Operator X and Operator C. Operator C should be set as Sine Waveform with a ratio of 16. In the FM Matrix, route Operator Z to modulate Operator X, and then have Operator X modulate Operator C. Operator C should be routed to feed the output.
Now that the FM8 Growl is setup, you can begin incorporating it into your projects. Remember that this kind of synth sound needs to be continuously tweaked to be appreciated. The Cutoff, Spread, and Resonance should be automated to have the parameters change often, or the sound should be mapped to a midi controller for on the fly manipulation. It is important to note that this type of synthesis requires a bit of patience and plenty of practice. If you are having trouble reproducing the sound in the video, you may want to seek advice in the forums.
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