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phace
KVRist
 
156 posts since 21 Mar, 2015

Postby phace; Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:16 am Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

I'm looking for an AM synth instrument since I don't actually know of any. Are these additive synths or is that different? All I've ever really used were subtractive VA, wavetable, and FM synths
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Ingonator
KVRAF
 
11362 posts since 21 Mar, 2008, from Hannover, Germany

Postby Ingonator; Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:09 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

AM means "amplitude modulation" where another term seems to be "ring modulation".

Quite a lot of VA or wavetable plugins seem to include such feature.

Wavetable plugins that include ring modulation (or more than one option) are e.g. Waldorf Largo, Waldorf Nave, Tone2 Icarus (in the Morph modes), Xfer Serum (in the Warp modes), DUNE 2.5, Waves Codex, PPG Wavegenerator and PPG Wavemapper 2.

Along my hardware synths e.g. my Waldorf Blofeld, Novation UltraNova and Novation Bass Station 2 include a ring modulator (or more than one) too.

With many of those you could add the amount of ring modulatinin in the Osc mixer section. It might be called "AM", "Ringmod", "RM", "Ring" or something comparable.
Ingo Weidner - Sound Design
HW: Blofeld, Pulse 2, UltraNova, Bass Station 2
SW: PPG 3.V, Largo, Nave, Icarus, Avenger, Serum, Legend, Saurus 2, Diva, Komplete 10, many more
i5-3350P / Win 10 x64 / Live 9 / Cubase Pro 9 / Studio One 3 / Bitwig 2
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planetearth
KVRian
 
1209 posts since 10 Jul, 2006, from Tampa

Postby planetearth; Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:14 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

phace wrote:I'm looking for an AM synth instrument since I don't actually know of any. Are these additive synths or is that different? All I've ever really used were subtractive VA, wavetable, and FM synths

Interesting. I've never heard of "AM synthesis", but from what I read here (https://www.keithmcmillen.com/blog/simp ... odulation/) it's not the same as additive synthesis, and it's not terribly easy to get what you want from it.

Someone on KVR posted something a decade ago about developing an AM synthesis VST, but after about four posts, nothing was posted about it again. (viewtopic.php?p=2597970)

Tone 2's Gladiator (https://www.tone2.com/gladiator2.html) seems to offer "AM Synthesis", though it's not that synth's main synth engine, so I'm not sure how well it's been implemented. You can try the free demo for yourself, however.

Other than Gladiator and the synth that was never developed, I didn't find any information about an "AM synthesis" VST. And frankly, as potentially difficult as additive and FM synthesis are to some people, I wouldn't be surprised if developers didn't want to take on another synthesis type that most people won't bother trying to understand.

I couldn't even find any audio examples of AM synthesis sounds. The ones in the KVR post don't play, and that developer's website doesn't list an AM synthesis VST (though he has others).

Steve
Listen to some of my stuff here: https://soundcloud.com/shadowsoflife.
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fmr
KVRAF
 
6264 posts since 16 Mar, 2003, from Porto - Portugal

Postby fmr; Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:23 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

Actually, AM is more connected with FM than RM. The simplest AM we can have in a synth is when we modulate the amplitude of the output of an oscillator with an LFO. This is pure AM, but the result will be a "tremolo" (our hear will translate the differences in amplitude as differences in volume, which is what they are actually).

However, if we use a real oscillator (one that oscillates at audio rates, not just low frequence), then the result sound will start to have extra harmonics, much in the ways FM works (but the resulting harmonics are different).

Any modular synth is able to do this, so, I suggest you check a modular, like for example u-he Zebra, Bazille, NI Reaktor,, etc.

If I'm not mistake, Nemesis is also able to do AM, but I'll jhave to check. Also other FM synths many times can do AM too (since they are, in fact, somehow related)

EDIT: Not Nemesis, but Gladiator.

EDIT: planetearth beat me to it :D
Fernando (FMR)
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Ingonator
KVRAF
 
11362 posts since 21 Mar, 2008, from Hannover, Germany

Postby Ingonator; Thu Aug 10, 2017 3:42 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

Ring modulation is a form of ampltude modulation but there are indeed multiple ways of amplitude modulation as fmr mentioned.

As i tried to explain a bunch of synths include dedicated ring modulation (often in the Osc mixer) and most of those i mentioned could also modulate the ampltude with a LFO to create "tremolo".

For example in Waldorf Nave in the mixer you could add ring modulation of Osc1 and Osc 2 called "W1*W2" there and also modulation of Osc 3 and Osc 1 called "Osc*W1".

In the mixer of my Novation UltraNova the options are "RM1*3Lvl" (= Ringmod of Oscs 1 and 3) and "RM2*3Lvl" (= Ringmod of Osc 2 and 3).


In some synths "AM" might be also used as a term for ring modulation like "FM" sometimes is used for adding vibrato even if no audio rate modulation is possible in that synth (what we usually would call "FM").
To make this even more confusing what is called "FM" (= frequency modulation) in the Yamaha DX synths like DX7 is actually "PM" (= phase modulation)...
Ingo Weidner - Sound Design
HW: Blofeld, Pulse 2, UltraNova, Bass Station 2
SW: PPG 3.V, Largo, Nave, Icarus, Avenger, Serum, Legend, Saurus 2, Diva, Komplete 10, many more
i5-3350P / Win 10 x64 / Live 9 / Cubase Pro 9 / Studio One 3 / Bitwig 2
yul
KVRian
 
755 posts since 26 Sep, 2002, from Montreal, CANADA

Postby yul; Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:32 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

AM will not work by itself you need oscillators... ring mod or lfo's sent to volume etc.. Virsyn Tera has a VCA and Ring Mod module both nearly the same you can combine two oscs that will AM each other.
phace
KVRist
 
156 posts since 21 Mar, 2015

Postby phace; Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:43 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

Alright I see.. I just wanted to know if there were any crafty synths which were solely dedicated to AM alone. I know that Albino 3 has an AM function, but I guess it's pretty much ring modulation then in the way that it functions.
generaldiomedes
KVRist
 
147 posts since 14 Apr, 2017

Postby generaldiomedes; Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:46 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

Spire and Avenger both have dedicated AM warp functions.
ghettosynth
KVRAF
 
9627 posts since 13 Oct, 2009

Postby ghettosynth; Thu Aug 10, 2017 4:48 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

If you want to play with AM as a synthesis method. Reaktor is probably the easiest way to do this. Just start with a simple FM synth and route the matrix outputs to AM inputs instead of FM. You'll probably need to sum them with a constant otherwise you'll get nothing out. I used FM6 from the library and just added 0.5 to the AM modulation inputs.

What you end up with is really a bunch of presets that, in many cases, have a similar quality to the FM counterparts only more subdued in some ways and more exaggerated in others. Of course this is because most practical FM synths are really a combination of FM and additive and so many of the algorithms don't really rely on actual frequency modulation, an organ sound is still going to be an organ sound.
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fmr
KVRAF
 
6264 posts since 16 Mar, 2003, from Porto - Portugal

Postby fmr; Thu Aug 10, 2017 5:34 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

phace wrote:Alright I see.. I just wanted to know if there were any crafty synths which were solely dedicated to AM alone. I know that Albino 3 has an AM function, but I guess it's pretty much ring modulation then in the way that it functions.

Actually, the AM function in Albino is EXACTLY what AM is and I described earlier. You have to take into consideration that, in that case, the carrier will be oscillator one, and the modulator will be oscillator 2, and the modulation index is controlled by the volume of oscillator 2. Albino does both AM and FM this way, you simply have to switch one or the other.

As I said, AM and FM are similar synthesis methods, except that, IMO, FM produces richer results, that's why, probably, it has been favoured during the years.
Fernando (FMR)
ghettosynth
KVRAF
 
9627 posts since 13 Oct, 2009

Postby ghettosynth; Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:01 am Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

fmr wrote:
phace wrote:Alright I see.. I just wanted to know if there were any crafty synths which were solely dedicated to AM alone. I know that Albino 3 has an AM function, but I guess it's pretty much ring modulation then in the way that it functions.


As I said, AM and FM are similar synthesis methods, except that, IMO, FM produces richer results, that's why, probably, it has been favoured during the years.


Yep.

That said, I'm now pretty happy with my most recent experiment. If you crossfade an FM patch between AM and FM you get an interesting enough texture morph. I'm not that interested in trying to understand how to obtain complex/rich results with AM, per se, but to take an existing FM patch and get a range of textures from it is worthwhile, especially since it's with a Reaktor synth that I use anyway.

On Edit: Well, yes, it is subtle, and there's a good reason for that, because it's not working correctly....doh! In any case, it's still useful, but FM6 actually does AM out of the box. It's per operator so you can start with any of the DX/TX waveforms and then use that as an amplitude modulator of a subsequent sine wave. If you're just looking to experiment with AM, it will get you started at no cost, assuming that you already have Reaktor, of course.

https://www.native-instruments.com/en/r ... show/3127/
Examigan
KVRAF
 
4057 posts since 15 Sep, 2005, from East Coast of the USA

Postby Examigan; Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:40 pm Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

From KV331Audio's website about Synthmaster: "VA, Additive, Wavetable, Wavescanning, Phase Modulation, Frequency Modulation, Pulse Width Modulation, Ring Modulation, Amplitude Modulation, Physical Modeling and SFZ Sample Playback synthesis" and yes I recommend it. :wink:
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planetearth
KVRian
 
1209 posts since 10 Jul, 2006, from Tampa

Postby planetearth; Thu Aug 10, 2017 1:55 pm Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

phace wrote:Alright I see.. I just wanted to know if there were any crafty synths which were solely dedicated to AM alone. I know that Albino 3 has an AM function, but I guess it's pretty much ring modulation then in the way that it functions.

That's what I thought, and why I was looking for dedicated AM synthesis plug-ins. It appears AM synthesis can be done in synths that already do many other types of synthesis, but it seems you still need to know how to craft the sound (as a pure "synthesist" would) to get any results.

I'm not sure if any of the synths mentioned have presets that are based solely on AM synthesis, or have controls that are dedicated to shaping sounds made with AM synthesis (the same way FM synths have controls for the operators and such). I have Gladiator and one or two of the others, and nothing really "stands out" as an "AM synthesis patch" (again, not in the same way that the ones that use FM synthesis do).

Steve
Listen to some of my stuff here: https://soundcloud.com/shadowsoflife.
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pekbro
KVRian
 
1072 posts since 29 Sep, 2010, from Maui

Postby pekbro; Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:23 pm Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

Another alternative: Fathom Synth... $11 atm, quite a capable and interesting
synth. AM, FM, Wavetable etc...

https://www.fathomsynth.com

https://www.kvraudio.com/marketplace/fathom-synth-by-seaweed-audio

-Cheers
ghettosynth
KVRAF
 
9627 posts since 13 Oct, 2009

Postby ghettosynth; Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:45 pm Re: Can you reccomend an AM synth plugin?

planetearth wrote:
phace wrote:Alright I see.. I just wanted to know if there were any crafty synths which were solely dedicated to AM alone. I know that Albino 3 has an AM function, but I guess it's pretty much ring modulation then in the way that it functions.

That's what I thought, and why I was looking for dedicated AM synthesis plug-ins. It appears AM synthesis can be done in synths that already do many other types of synthesis, but it seems you still need to know how to craft the sound (as a pure "synthesist" would) to get any results.

I'm not sure if any of the synths mentioned have presets that are based solely on AM synthesis, or have controls that are dedicated to shaping sounds made with AM synthesis (the same way FM synths have controls for the operators and such). I have Gladiator and one or two of the others, and nothing really "stands out" as an "AM synthesis patch" (again, not in the same way that the ones that use FM synthesis do).

Steve


The aforementioned FM6 has proper AM as well as FM+RM built into each operator. So, you can use the very same DX algorithms to build chains of AM modulated operators where each modulator, and its associated envelope, are used to modulate the amplitude of the next operator in the chain. With that by itself, however, you are limited to a sin wave carrier, but arbitrary modulators.

I prefer my patched variant, but even as is, it does give you the ability to experiment with AM in the same way that one typically creates FM patches. Now, whether or not the DX FM algorithms are as ideal for AM is a different question.
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