How to make this nice bass

How to make that sound...
levm38
KVRer
3 posts since 11 Feb, 2019

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:46 am

Good Morning

I use ableton and I have Serum and Spire only for now.
As I am a beginner in sound design, I just wanted to ask if someone knows how to generate this kind of bass, I just love it.
It starts around 30s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2OaYnCiZhjA

Kwurqx
KVRist
170 posts since 15 Jun, 2017

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:43 am

Since you are apparently quite new at this: it's a pretty generic SAW sub oscillator bass. That's a good thing, since many synths can create these sort of basses.

2 SAW oscillators, 1 SAW tuned an octave down. Sub at 100%, the other turned down a little (-6 or 7 dB)
Send this through a 24 dB/oct Lowpass filter (pretty much closed, around some 130 Hz), little bit of resonance.
Filter cutoff modulation ENV, steep attack then decay of say half a second (to no sustain level), just an octave and a bit of modulation amount. Short release.
Amp ENV, steep attack then decay of say half a second to some 90+% of sustain. Short release.
MONO Legato (do not retrigger envelopes). And a bit of Portamento time (25 ms or so).

Notes: C, D#, C where D# to C is mono portamento (where the D# is held down, while playing the C).

So far, so good. Then for the nasty details....

There are many "SAW" oscillator shapes. And many different sounding 24 dB/Oct filters. Some filter drive and/or waveshaping/distortion may be needed to get that "grunt". They also all sound/react different.

So if you want an "exact match", there are many more variables. But....if close is good enough, you'll get it.

The superb and very versatile and FREE Vember Audio - Surge surely offers all the needed ingredients (and much more). It can even shape/mix the oscillators waveshapes to get even closer.
https://www.kvraudio.com/product/surge-by-vember-audio

But simpler synths will probably also come close.

levm38
KVRer
3 posts since 11 Feb, 2019

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:43 pm

Thanks a lot for taking the time, I will try to do what you say in Serum which is the only I got, or Spire, and I will give a try to the one you mentioned as well, some of the things are like chinese to me, but I will come later with questions if I have,

levm38
KVRer
3 posts since 11 Feb, 2019

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:04 pm

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This is more or less what I did, but I have somethings that are not clear when I look at serum

https://www.screencast.com/t/PjeqjTEuFBFL (https://www.screencast.com/t/PjeqjTEuFBFL)

If I put the octave -1 it sounds really ugly.
The bass I got looks like more electro house (Benny Bennasi style)

Did I understand well the filter cutoff env?

And the notes I used,

https://www.screencast.com/t/fxhk4Kf6w (https://www.screencast.com/t/fxhk4Kf6w)

Kwurqx
KVRist
170 posts since 15 Jun, 2017

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:29 am

Since you are not allowed to post media files (yet) I can't hear your result. Just going by the picture of the Serum GUI. I'm not a Serum guy. So can't tell everything by a pic of the Serum GUI....

I do notice that your second oscillator is not a SAW (at all). Also, I don't see a (sub)oscillator transposed an octave (or -12 semitones). And the "normal" oscillator not at some 80% volume compared to suboscillator 1. Both oscillators outputs appear to be sent through a 24 dB/Oct Lowpass filter (which is good). Filter cutoff modulated by an ENV with a short Decay (which is good). Quite some attack time (over a 100 milliseconds which may be a bit much, but no attack time is too fast). Not being familiar with Serum, so I don't see the ENV AMOUNT (which should be just a bit). I can't tell how (or by which ENV) the AMP (volume) is modulated. Also it looks like MONO and LEGATO are not engaged? And no portamento time?

Translating the "recipe" to the relatively simple and (also) FREE Ichiro Toda - Synth1, I get a very similar result using the Synth1 "normal" LP24 (so not the non-linear ladder). Filter cutoff around 40 (of 127), a bit of resonace and drive (both 15). And modulation amount at some +6 / 7 (of +64).
https://www.kvraudio.com/product/synth1-by-ichiro-toda

I'm sure that both Serum and Spire will be very able to produce satisfying results.....

CHOOS
KVRist
186 posts since 3 Nov, 2010

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:31 pm

Hi.

I just had a look.
It's a simple low-passed square

User avatar
BlitBit
KVRist
206 posts since 28 Nov, 2013 from Germany

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:01 pm

CHOOS wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:31 pm
It's a simple low-passed square
+1

I would also tend towards a low-passed square instead of a saw wave because it has a slightly hollow sound to it.

Kwurqx
KVRist
170 posts since 15 Jun, 2017

Re: How to make this nice bass

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:21 pm

CHOOS wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:31 pm
Hi.

I just had a look.
It's a simple low-passed square
Really? Almost all partials are filtered away. So the basic oscillator shape is not obviously seen, even in the attack. But you mean just a pure 50% -1/+1 pulse square? One with just odd partials? It doesn't sound that "odd" too me. I thought undetuned subosc SAWs, tried and thought the result to be close enough. Do you drive this square hard though the filter then? And/or use a non-linear filter? Surely there are not only odd partials there?

Not saying you're wrong here (or I'm right), but I'm just surprised. I have not put the wave in a wave editor to see the shape, nor pushed it through a spectrum analyzer to see the spectral content. But now am tempted to have a closer look.

Anyway, what works works. When there's so little partials left in the signal, you can't go wrong too far.

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