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How do I make awesome dubstep sounds? How does Skrillex do it? I get these questions a lot, and...

Massive Tutorials

Quick & Easy Series: Nasty Wobble Bass in NI Massive

How do I make awesome dubstep sounds? How does Skrillex do it? I get these questions a lot, and quite frankly you can find too many of these kinds of tutorials on YouTube and various forums already. So I am going to do something a little different here. Get ready to learn the basics of building your own sick bass sounds that you can put your signature on!

In this installment of the Quick & Easy NI Massive Tutorial Series I will show you how to create the basic template of a nasty bass sound that you can go back to again and again when making new projects. The key here is to not get too complicated in the beginning and to experiment after that. I believe that if you find something that works, something that you will be able to build on, then go with it! So here we go. It only take a few steps to make, but once you are done you save it as a preset. Then when you want to make a new bass sound, you load it up and start mixing it up a bit. This is so stripped down that it leaves tons of wide open space for you to work with while expanding upon it. And it only take about a minute! (It will take you longer to read through this than it will to make it.)

All you need is one oscillator so you can turn off OSC2 and OSC3 right now. And for OSC1 select Vulgar from the dropdown menu. Other will work too, but this will give you a deep and nasty base to your sound right from the very beginning.

There is a default envelope by design in Massive s let’s make a quick adjustment to the 4Env tab. All we need to do here is turn the Level all the way up. This leaves a ton of room for you to mess around in here later.

Now let’s visit the 5LFO tab just to the right. Again, since we are just making a template that will will be built upon later, we want to make a few changes as possible. Set it to Restart and Sync it to 1/4. Now if you want to start with a faster wobble, all you need to do is up the ratio a bit to 1/4, 1/8, 1/2, 1/16, etc. And when you come back later to build a bass for your projects all you need to do is assign a Macro to this setting to automate your control of the speed at which the bass wobbles. One more thing and then we move on, and this is just a personal preference thing. Move the sine wave move the sine wave over a little so your sound starts at the peak. You can leave this setting as it is by default, if you like.

Now to add a quick filter. On the FILTER 1 panel, select Scream form the dropdown menu and adjust the knobs and slider to match the image below.

Moving on to Effects. On the FX1 tab, pick the Brauner Tube and set it up to match the image. This should enhance the overall fatness and drive of your sound.

For the FX2 tab, choose the Dimension Expander. This is going to open the sound up quite a bit and spread it out. For now we will leave the EQ off, as this is simply a template and we do not know how it will be use in the future.

Now grab the 5LFO controller and assign it to the Wt-position of the OSC1 panel and you are done.

Run through a few notes and make whatever fine tuning you want to, but keep in mind that is a template and not the ultimate bass sound ever created. That comes later. 🙂  My next best advise to you in this matter is to spend five more minutes on this. Close out this project and start over. Make five more instances using this same method. Get used to where the components are that are required to make this kind of sound. Then spend another five minutes swapping out oscillators to create different sounds. Now change up the filter and effects we used in this lesson and see what you get. Now add more oscillators. The options are virtually limitless, so it’s just about impossible for you not to find something new and fresh you can call your own. You may be amazed at the wide range of possibilities this one little preset will open up for you.

If you like this kind of quick and easy to follow walkthrough format, let us know by leaving a comment below. You can even request a topic for a future post! So what are you waiting for?



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