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The NI Massive Performer is a very flexible and helpful controller that is able to be used in a...

Massive Tutorials

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain

The NI Massive Performer is a very flexible and helpful controller that is able to be used in a number of different ways to achieve both complex modulation schemes and instrument automation. This tutorial shows you a little trick that may come in handy when you want to automate an entire synth with it.

[aside title=”Sweet Shortcut!“]Using the NI Massive performer to automate the amplitude of the entire synth is as easy as a single click of the mouse![/aside]

I have shared several tutorials in the last couple years about the NI Massive performer tool and how it can be used in creative ways to accomplish a wide range of tasks. And we have also looked at how the sidechain feature that is found throughout Massive actually works and some of the more common uses you may find applicable to your projects. This tutorial is aimed at bringing those two things together and utilizing one of the more mysterious sidechain features to show you an amazing shortcut to synth automation in Massive.

Let’s start out by building a quick synth. For this example I chose to put together a simple mid range bass, as they are incredibly popular these days and perhaps this particular sound can help some of you as well. I have loaded a Dirty Needle wavetable into OSC1 and OSC2. The pitch value of each of these oscillators is adjusted down, OSC1 is just a matter of cents, but OSC2 is dropped almost a full octave. I also loaded a Dirty PWM wavetable into OSC3 and dropped the pitch about an octave.

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 1

This was then run through a Highpass 4 filter loaded into the Filter1 panel. Since there is no other filter used, all three main oscillators are routed directly to Filter1 and the output mix has also been set accordingly.

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 2

A Brauner Tube Amo is added to the FX1 tab to provide some drive and grit to the sound. A Phaser Mono is added to the FX2 tab to give the sound a little more width and slight motion. And the EQ feature is activated and used to better shape the sound.

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 3
Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 4
Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 5

The total number of Unison voices is increased to two in order to take advantage of the Pan Position feature, which helps to spread this sound across the stereo field. Feel free to use a less extreme setting to focus the bass towards the center of the mix for your projects.

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 6

Now an NI Massive Performer is set up with a simple sequence and set to sync to a ratio of 1/16. This is then assigned to the sidechain controller box on the main AMP panel. This will control the entire synth amplitude through the NI Massive performer.

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 7
Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 8

And for an added touch of character, I have assigned this same NI Massive performer to modulate the Amp parameters of both the Feedback and Noise panels.

Using the NI Massive Performer with a Sidechain Tutorial by OhmLab 9

Below is a simple audio sample of the bass in action along side some basic drums to help give a better idea of how this idea of using a NI Massive Performer to control the entire synth’s output through the use of the main amp sidechain feature.

[audio:https://www.massivesynth.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/Sidechain-Performer-Bass.mp3|titles=Sidechain Performer Bass]

Feel free to shoot a message our way with tutorial requests and/or general feedback you may have for us. Thanks for stopping by!

Cheers,
OhmLab

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