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Electric pianos in Reason

Electric pianos in Reason

Welcome back to another creative sound design topic. Today I am going to create myself an electronic piano that is based on a wide range of different theories. While some electric pianos (like the Rhodes for instance does) uses hammers that strike a metal plate which then goes through an amplifier. This has a similar character and concept when playing, for instance, a Vibraphone. Major differences there is that a vibraphone uses different sticks, while the Rhodes piano uses a type of hammer and the sound output will go through an amp.

11 months ago
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Playing melodies around scales

Playing melodies around scales

Today's article is all related to Reason 9. Just because of the idea we are going to use players to make a song much faster (and it may also be an aiding tool later to know how to make a melody later). The reason why I am using players is simply that since Reason 9 I haven't really played any chords manually myself (as I am starting to realize this). One may argue that using players is like cheating to create music. When you understand the idea of making music than players in Reason 9 will make things a lot easier to get things done (without forgetting the whole theory behind it). You may have seen me bounding together a whole article about building chords last week. That is the theory behind it... today we'll be expanding on this to make melodies the easy way.

12 months ago
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Layered plucked chord player

Layered plucked chord player

Welcome to another article about sound design using the Subtractor. As some of you may well know the subtractor still has a special place in my heart for many reasons. Because it is simplistic to use by looking at it. It has most of the important options to make a sound (while honest, it is not the best there are better options). And it is a synth to work fast with. In most cases, I am into layering my sounds using a combinator. Today I would like to throw in the process on how I have managed to create a chord builder using the Reason 9 players while using the subtractor. There are different things you can do with it, but I will just throw in the basics so you can expand on this after reading this through. The angle I am going for with this setup is to have a house classic type of plucked lead that could work well in any type of Electronic Dance music type of genre.

12 months ago
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Control Voltage Step Sequencer of Thor

Control Voltage Step Sequencer of Thor

In the following article, I would like to focus on one specific element that sits inside Thor the Polysonic Synthesizer. It will be the curve output from the step sequencer. While in practical usage the step sequencer is often used to play a sequence in a linear direction. A similar thing could be said for the Matrix Pattern Step Sequencer. Sometimes we just need a simple tool that allows a curve that can be stepped differently per note and sometimes we don't. There are all kinds of different options to make this work. For instance, we could use a velocity setting to act like a "hidden" cv controller (for instance using a Velocity to Filter to mimic the idea of a VCF (Voltage Controlled Filter)). In the next few paragraphs, I would like to use the curve from the Thor synthesizer to mimic this idea but have different things to control its output.

12 months ago
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Shepard tone

Shepard tone

Music can really play tricks with the mind at times. In the following article, I will be describing one technique that does a really mind job at best. The Shepard tone I am going to describe is something that often is used in cinematics to create suspense for instance. Others use it just for the fun of it being an illusion. It kind of would be similar to those images from Escher.

one year ago
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Subtractor layers using Propellerhead Reason

Subtractor layers using Propellerhead Reason

Welcome back to another article about our good old friend, the subtractor polyphonic synthesizer. The thing with this classic synthesizer it just never gets old. Every time I load it up, it just puts a smile on my face. Might it just be because it screams classic and old, or just because I am revisiting an old friend. Every time I pull a few strings on this thing there are always different type of sounds I can get from it. While limiting myself out with that old thing (hey remember that Reactor Refill I did back in 2015? That was all based on subtractors). The reason why I always love to use this synthesizer is because of the option of subtractive phasing. Multiply I personally do no use that often just because I always have a feeling it tends to make it rather unstable sonic wise. While subtractive can be used to sweep through a wave form rather gradual or in some cases rather fast. There are plenty of different options.

2017-09-25
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Modular synth with subtractive synthesis

Modular synth with subtractive synthesis

Welcome back to a quick article about a modular synthesizer setup. While I have been working with different concepts and ideas regarding building different styles of modular synths there is one combination I never have dreamed about doing: A Modular build with subtractive synthesis. While in theory it is quite similar as previous build I did regarding using Thor. You can for instance read in my previous concept about setting up a Thor build based on that idea (linked up in the related section at the bottom of this article). I also did similar builds using the NN-XT because it can have its unique options regarding to filters. However, for some reason I never had this idea to do it with a subtractor. And to be honest, it can be quite cool to do it.

2017-09-18
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Creating an Ambient Pad with Textures

Creating an Ambient Pad with Textures

Welcome back to another Tutorial about Propellerhead Reason. Today we'll be looking at ways we can create an ambient pad or ambient drone. While I have touched this subject on different occasions I would like to go through a linear approach while building a layered pad and talk you through the basic ideas and thoughts about why I am doing this. Others may have a different opinion on the subject because an ambient pad can be created in many different ways. Hence I am choosing a linear direction on this approach so have some ideas to either create one for yourself or learn different methods to improve the technique on pad building. With this intro done for, lets get started with making an Ambient Pad.

2017-09-10
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Ambient Bass

Ambient Bass

In this tutorial we'll be looking at ambient music in Propellerhead Reason. A lot of times ambient tracks are pretty much 'empty' as a whole. In comparison to, lets say, EDM music there is much more going on. Ambient tracks are usually about drones and soundscapes. While in a lot of times the bass line can be used as a syncopation for the track itself. They can also be used in different ways to drive the listener nuts at some point, not really realizing what is going on with the track. This is also on of the reasons why an Ambient Bass is pretty hard to do right. Because you want to avoid the so called four to the four type of rhythm. And because they are sometimes hard to make from a sequence perspective it often gets underestimated.

2017-09-01
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Essential LFO tricks part 3

Essential LFO tricks part 3

In this article series about essential LFO tricks in Propellerhead Reason we will be looking at different ways to use Low Frequency Oscillators to control different settings in stock device. In our previous articles we mainly have been looking at the Subtractor synthesizer. Later we'll go more in depth using the malstrom graintable synthesizer and thor the polysonic synthesizer. In theory it is a basic pattern or oscillator that repeats the same cycle. You can use these to control different settings with in the synthesizer itself. At some point these settings are limited to the connection they internally have. If you use a Combinator in Reason you can modulate different parameters with different low frequency oscillators while doing so. In this article we'll try to shed some light on the latter.

2017-07-05
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Essential LFO tricks in the subtractor part two

Essential LFO tricks in the subtractor part two

Low Frequency Oscillators (LFO for short) are nifty little things to automatically modulate different settings inside a synthesizer. While these modulators are often being overlooked, in this article Hydlide will be diving more in depth about what powers lies ahead while using an LFO in Propellerhead Reason. They are present in most of the common synthesizers (like the subtractor, malstrom and Thor), here we will be looking mainly at the subtractor analog synthesizer. 

2017-07-03
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Essential LFO tricks in Reason

Essential LFO tricks in Reason

One of the most overlooked tools in Reason are the build in LFO (Low frequency oscillator) from native stock devices such as the Subtractor, Malstrom and Thor. In this article Hydlide will mainly look at the powers of the subtractor LFO. The example files in this case are custom combinator patches (which should load up in Reason 5 even). The LFO in the subtractor has its charm and comes with patterns like triangle, Ramp, reverse Ramp, Square, Random and Drift. The LFO2 is often not being touched, yet this one is quite interesting to use in certain sound design techniques. We'll be touching different segments for different LFO settings and types in a linear direction. This might shed some light on what you can do with an automated pattern inside a synthesizer like the Subtractor in Propellerhead Reason.

2017-07-02
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