Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

VST, AU, AAX, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion
recursive one
KVRAF
3847 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Post Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:28 pm

layzer wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:55 pm
SMH wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:17 pm
Convincing analog filter model is a MUST and sometimes you don't even need oscillators!! :hihi: (Tho it has great oscillators too. :love: )

https://soundcloud.com/smh2600/admiral- ... b-on-strat
lol, why do people insist on posting examples that present the audio using mediocre mastering? dont they realize it makes the synth sound like any of the thousands of old synthedit or flowstone synths out there?
This audio is a single track of a guitar processed by Poly Ana as an external effect and, if I understand it right, if was posted in order to demonstrate the Poly Ana's filter character. I don't see how "mastering" could be of any relevance to this task.

What do you think "mastering" is?
You may think you can fly ... but you better not try

recursive one
KVRAF
3847 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:19 am

Urs wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:14 am
recursive one wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:23 am
On the other hand, other kinds of digital sounds, such as produced by wavetable, FM, additive oscillators - these sounds often haivng the tendency of being harsh/cold - wouldn't they benefit from the analog filter coloration?
That's pretty individual. It may do so, it may not. Subtractive synthesis is based on the idea that oscillators can easily produce sound with a homogenous spectrum, and filters are used to create movement within that spectrum. It's the simplicity and predictability therein, which makes rich and interesting sounds available with very few parameters.

The other oscillators you describe are not necessarily limited to a homogenous spectrum. Whether filtering makes sense, and what effect it has depends on the properties of the signal generated. The more sparse the spectrum, the less work for the filter, the less effect, the less predictable the outcome.
Thanks, that makes sense. I had an idea at the back of my mind for a long time "what if I had these awesome Repro or DIva filters in my favourite wavetable/FM synths", I see that this would not necessarily translate to better sounds.

Anyway, some of the recent synths do offer analog-modelled filters and wavetable and FM oscillators, so it's probably the matter of finding osc/filter combinations that actually work (instead of making actual music lol)
Urs wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:14 am
Nope, true unison (voice level, not oscillator level) is awesome with characterful filters. It's just also not quite resource-friendly.
Screw the resources, give us the best possible sounds! :hyper:
Last edited by recursive one on Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
You may think you can fly ... but you better not try

AnX
KVRAF
3662 posts since 17 Nov, 2015

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:22 am

to make a synth stand out you need to drown all the factory sounds in reverb

ramseysounds
KVRist
183 posts since 9 Jul, 2014 from UK

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:31 am

A filter is a filter is a filter. It's just an EQ, no?
All it does is cuts off frequency below a set point.
Sure there are different types, but they all do the same thing essentially.
IMO. :tu:
I wonder what happens if I press this button...

punkfest2000
KVRist
101 posts since 13 Sep, 2005

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:43 am

Interesting topic guys. I've always been a bit confused when someone comments "the filters sound great ...the filters are beautiful...ooh the filters on that synth are to die for". Well hang on, what do you mean the filters sound great? How do you define good or bad with regards to a filter? I'm a guitar guy and don't understand synthesis, but isn't that like saying an EQ (cut only) sounds great or the tone knob on my guitar sounds great? I get that a filter changes the original sound that is fed into it, cutting frequencies and all, and that differently designed filters would have different outcomes, but man, reading here about synths on KVR it's like the "filter" is king.

Some good stuff in the postings here and I feel I have a little better understanding of it now.

resynthesis
KVRist
379 posts since 17 Sep, 2007 from Planet Thanet

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:07 am

^ I think that's like saying all fuzz boxes sound the same :) Filters may have their own differences in the same way that a Big Muff differs from a Zonk, for example.

User avatar
layzer
KVRAF
5922 posts since 11 Jun, 2006

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:08 am

recursive one wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:28 pm
layzer wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:55 pm
SMH wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:17 pm
Convincing analog filter model is a MUST and sometimes you don't even need oscillators!! :hihi: (Tho it has great oscillators too. :love: )

https://soundcloud.com/smh2600/admiral- ... b-on-strat
lol, why do people insist on posting examples that present the audio using mediocre mastering? dont they realize it makes the synth sound like any of the thousands of old synthedit or flowstone synths out there?
This audio is a single track of a guitar processed by Poly Ana as an external effect and, if I understand it right, if was posted in order to demonstrate the Poly Ana's filter character. I don't see how "mastering" could be of any relevance to this task.

What do you think "mastering" is?
well you dont know much about presenting audio in "the best possible" light as it relates to
presenting a painting in the visual arts. ask any commercial vst vendor how much relevance
mastering plays in trying to make their products sound good.
ps. dont f w/ me you will lose.
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recursive one
KVRAF
3847 posts since 7 Feb, 2013

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:13 am

layzer wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:08 am
ps. dont f w/ me you will lose.
Yep, I will lose my time.

So I won't.
You may think you can fly ... but you better not try

AnX
KVRAF
3662 posts since 17 Nov, 2015

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:14 am

layzer wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:08 am
recursive one wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:28 pm
layzer wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:55 pm
SMH wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:17 pm
Convincing analog filter model is a MUST and sometimes you don't even need oscillators!! :hihi: (Tho it has great oscillators too. :love: )

https://soundcloud.com/smh2600/admiral- ... b-on-strat
lol, why do people insist on posting examples that present the audio using mediocre mastering? dont they realize it makes the synth sound like any of the thousands of old synthedit or flowstone synths out there?
This audio is a single track of a guitar processed by Poly Ana as an external effect and, if I understand it right, if was posted in order to demonstrate the Poly Ana's filter character. I don't see how "mastering" could be of any relevance to this task.

What do you think "mastering" is?
well you dont know much about presenting audio in "the best possible" light

like your Soundcloud examples ?

i didnt see you put up any links to wav files....

Stefken
KVRian
771 posts since 9 Nov, 2016

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:52 am

recursive one wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:19 am
I had an idea at the back of my mind for a long time "what if I had these awesome Repro or DIva filters in my favourite wavetable/FM synths", I see that this would not necessarily translate to better sounds.

Anyway, some of the recent synths do offer analog-modelled filters and wavetable and FM oscillators, so it's probably the matter of finding osc/filter combinations that actually work (instead of making actual music lol)
Well, there is FM and FM.
I like the way it is implemented in the Arp Odeyssey where you are in a subtractive model but can add FM (effect) giving the sound a somewhat dissonant flavour (when used in small amounts).

I'm now experimenting with the modular route where you can add filters, fm possibilities, anything you want and build your own synth. I make no secret of the fact that I love the Vult filters in Voltage Modular and hoping his Vessek oscillator will be added soon.

User avatar
whyterabbyt
Beware the Quoth
26480 posts since 4 Sep, 2001 from R'lyeh Oceanic Amusement Park and Funfair

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:22 am

ramseysounds wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:31 am
A filter is a filter is a filter. It's just an EQ, no?
nope.

All it does is cuts off frequency below a set point.
nope.
Sure there are different types, but they all do the same thing essentially.

nope.
"The bearer of this signature is a genuine and authorised pope."

chk071
KVRAF
18153 posts since 11 Apr, 2010 from Germany

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:25 am

That's why i love those multi quotes.

You didn't really say much, except that you disagree with about every single point he made, did you?

User avatar
whyterabbyt
Beware the Quoth
26480 posts since 4 Sep, 2001 from R'lyeh Oceanic Amusement Park and Funfair

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:27 am

layzer wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:08 am
well you dont know much about presenting audio in "the best possible" light as it relates to
presenting a painting in the visual arts.
hmmm, ive done a wee bit of work helping people present audio related to their paintings in the visual arts. your insight would be appreciated, so please go ahead...
"The bearer of this signature is a genuine and authorised pope."

User avatar
vurt
addled muppet weed
39528 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:28 am

AnX wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:14 am
layzer wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:08 am
recursive one wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:28 pm
layzer wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:55 pm
SMH wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:17 pm
Convincing analog filter model is a MUST and sometimes you don't even need oscillators!! :hihi: (Tho it has great oscillators too. :love: )

https://soundcloud.com/smh2600/admiral- ... b-on-strat
lol, why do people insist on posting examples that present the audio using mediocre mastering? dont they realize it makes the synth sound like any of the thousands of old synthedit or flowstone synths out there?
This audio is a single track of a guitar processed by Poly Ana as an external effect and, if I understand it right, if was posted in order to demonstrate the Poly Ana's filter character. I don't see how "mastering" could be of any relevance to this task.

What do you think "mastering" is?
well you dont know much about presenting audio in "the best possible" light

like your Soundcloud examples ?

i didnt see you put up any links to wav files....
hes only presenting synthedit and flowstone freebies.



:hihi:

User avatar
whyterabbyt
Beware the Quoth
26480 posts since 4 Sep, 2001 from R'lyeh Oceanic Amusement Park and Funfair

Re: Are filters what make the sound of a synth stand out from the crowd?

Post Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:31 am

chk071 wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:25 am
That's why i love those multi quotes.

You didn't really say much, except that you disagree with about every single point he made, did you?
well spotted, do you want a cookie? :clap: :hihi:

of course, if i'd actually pointed out why he was wrong for each point you'd probably be whinging about pedantry, wouldnt you.

but combfilters and allpass filters clearly arent EQs, clearly not all filters are lowpass filters, and as the overlap between answers one and two shows, clearly not all filters do the same thing.

happy now, or have you got anything useful of your own you'd like to contribute on the matter?

:hyper:

edited: for typo
Last edited by whyterabbyt on Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
"The bearer of this signature is a genuine and authorised pope."

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