NI Massive Preset Series: Distorted Bass Drop
Welcome back to the second installment of the brand new NI Massive Preset Series! This time we will be creating a nice distorted bass drop that can be used in all sorts of projects and music genres ranging from electro house and trance to dubstep. As always you will be able, and encouraged, to follow along with the pictures and audio samples provided below. And even though you get to download the preset for free at the end of the walkthrough, you should save your own and have fun changing things up along the way! And remember that we’d love to hear from you with the sounds you end up making from the many tutorials here by visiting either the MassiveSynth Facebook page or the OhmLab Facebook page.
Let’s get started with this new bass drop! First lets pick a couple of oscillators to generate our base sound. As you can see, I have selected Reducer from the OSC1 panel dropdown menu and A.I. from the dropdown menu of the OSC2 panel. We do not need panel OSC3 for this sound, so I have turned it off. You should also take notice that I have made adjustments to the knobs of both oscillators, and you match yours up to what you see in the image below before moving on.
Next, we need to set up a basic envelope. Go to the 1Env tab and adjust the settings to match the image below.
Now to hear what we just made, we will assign the envelope to both oscillators that were set up in the first step. Do this by adding the 1Env controller to the Pitch value on both the OSC1 and OSC2 panels and set both to -24.00 (which is exactly 2 whole octaves down), as shown in the image below. The sound will be changed immediately, which you will also hear in the audio sample provided.
We will now create a second simple envelope to affect the amplitude of the oscillators. Start by clicking in the 2Env tab. No adjust the knobs to match up with the image below. Your wave should look the same once the settings are correct.
We will now take this new envelope and add it to both the OSC1 and OSC2 panels by assigning it to the Amp knobs, as seen in the image below. You may hear a slight change in the audio sample.
Now for the final steps. We will bring the sound to life and provide added control by setting up a couple of Macros. Let’s start with naming the first Macro. On the Macro 1 knob I have typed in the name Intensity (you can call it whatever you like).
Now we will be adding the distortion and a little more punch. From the FILTER1 panel, select Scream from the dropdown menu. Go ahead and assign Macro 1 now to both the Cutoff and Scream knobs of the new filter and adjust the setting to match the image below. By leaving the Cutoff dial down a bit, we have created more room for the sound to increase in overall intensity through the new Macro control. As you will hear, the sound is just beginning to take shape but still has a way to go.
Move now to the FX1 tab and select Brauner Tube from the dropdown menu. Next assign Macro 1 to both the Dry/Wet and Drive knobs and adjust the settings to match those in the image below. You will hear a big difference in the audio sample this time.
Heading down to the INSERT 1 panel now, select Bit Crusher form the dropdown menu. Now assign Macro 1 to the Dry/Wet knob and adjust the settings accordingly. You will hear that the sound is more pleasing and has a greater overall appeal as you turn the Macro 1 knob up and down through the full range of intensity.
So we have built a good starting point for a distorted bass drop and given it some fairly decent control over the overall intensity of the sound. But we still need to give you control over the way the sound evolves. So, let’s set up one more Macro before we end the tutorial. I have named Macro 2, Attack.
Click on the 1Env tab. Now assign Macro 2 to the Attack knob and add just a little juice to it, as seen in the image below. As you will hear now, just a small twist of the Macro 2 knob will increase the attack by a lot, providing you with much more control of your drop.
One more step and we will be done. Assign Macro 2 to the Delay knob of the 2Env tab, and adjust the setting according to the image below.
The sound you hear in the final audio sample is just a starting point. And with only two Macros set up and a large majority of controller slots and other parameters untouched, it can easily be made into your own unique sounds to use in many projects in the future. The Macros we have added here in this tutorial give you decent control, but you should definitely play around with them and make sure you get everything you want out of them. Try going back to each of the panels and experimenting with the settings. Change the starting Pitch of one or both oscillators. Choose a different tube amp. Try adding some Modulation. Turn on the EQ. Add some Noise and/or Feedback to make it more interesting. You also have another Filter, FX and Insert panel to play with. And don’t forget you still have another oscillator to add if you want, which could quickly change everything. So as you can imagine, and hopefully will see for yourself, simple template patches like this one are a great way to jump into making elements with the bare bones work already done for you, and they only take a few minutes to build and save for future use.
Download the free preset here: Basic Distorted Bass Drop Template