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In celebration of this time of year when things start to get a bit dark, a bit...sinister and...

In celebration of this time of year when things start to get a bit dark, a bit…sinister and haunting, this lesson will show you how to design an NI Massive horror synth that can be used in a wide range of projects!

With all the work I do creating sounds, music, atmospheres and environments for filmmakers, I thought it would be fun to share some of the darker capabilities of this amazing synth with this NI Massive horror synth tutorial. A great sound to use in darker projects like Dubstep, Dark Dn’B, Psy Trance, Indurtrial, Grime and other popular genres that feature dark cinematic sounds. Using a synth like this one can add a certain intensity and tension that helps to draw your audience in and take your music to a whole new level.

It begins with loading a Vulgar wavetable into OSC1 and dropping the pitch by one octave. Then a Carbon wavetable is loaded into OSC2, set to run in Bend+ mode, also dropped one octave and routed to Filter1. And lastly a Square-Saw wavetable is loaded into OSC3 with the pitch dropped two octaves and the Amplitude turned down a bit.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 1

Now an Envelope is set up with a long attack and release, with the Decay volume stopping just short of maximum. This envelope will be used many times throughout the designing of this NI Massive horror synth. For now, it will be assigned to modulate the Pitch, Wt-position and Intensity paramaters of OSC1 and OSC2. It is also assigned to modulate the pitch and intensity of OSC3. Meanwhile, the main Amp Envelope’d Decay volume is turned all the way up and the attack and release are extended a bit.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 2

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 3

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 15

A Double Notch filter is loaded into Filter1 and a Lowpass4 filter is loaded into Filter2. The same envelope is then assigned to modulate the Cutoff and Resonance parameters of both of these filters.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 4

Now the Modulation OSC is set up. First, a Ring Mod is assigned to OSC1 and modulated by the same envelope again. Then the Filter FM feature is assigned to Filter1.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 5
NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 6

The Noise oscillator is loaded with a Water Pipes preset and the Color parameter is modulated by the same envelope, its routing slightly biased towards Filter1. The Feedback feature is set up with the Amp knob being modulated by the envelope as well.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 7

One Insert is added, a Sine Shaper, with the Dry/Wet knob being modulated by the envelope.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 8

Reverb and a Dimension Expander are added to make the sound much bigger and deeper. The EQ is used to accentuate the low end presence of this NI Massive horror synth.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 9
NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 10
NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 11

The Voicing tab is where the total number of Unisono voices is increased to three. These voices are then spread out across the stereo field through the Pan Position feature. The Wavetable Position feature is used to slightly affect the sound as it develops, and this is automated by the same envelope that has already been used several times in this sound. Lastly, the Pitch Cutoff feature is used to create some phasing and is modulated by the same envelope.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 12

OSC3 is set to Bypass in the Routing tab, which is then put into action by turning up the Bypass slider on the main Amplitude panel. This is why the envelope that is assigned to control so many features did not have the Decay volume turned all the way up. So OSC3 can be heard partially unaffected by the filters and the Sine Shaper. A subtle, but nice touch to finish off this NI Massive horror synth.

NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 13
NI Massive Horror Synth Tutorial by OhmLab 14

Below is an audio sample of this NI Massive horror synth in action to give you an idea of what it can sound like. No processing was added outside of Massive and what has been shared in this tutorial.

[audio:https://www.massivesynth.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/NI-Massive-Horror-Synth.mp3|titles=NI Massive Horror Synth]

If you have a tutorial request or would like to share one of your own, please send us a message today before you leave. Thanks for stopping by!

Cheers,
OhmLab

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