The envelope thread.

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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by ::BLM:: » Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:11 pm

eggnchips wrote:I like to increase the attack time on percussive elements such as hats or maracas, taking away the thwack. It kind of blends them into the background, making them more subtle. Great if you're after that kind of mood.
Yeah I do this all the time.

Also I tend to put my single drum samples into individual samplers so I can modulate the ADSR throughout the track. I like to record modulations of the release time throughout the tracks on things like open hats just to make the track move a bit more and so its always changing throughout the track.

Regarding envelopes on synths rather then samplers, there is a trick on the prophet08 using the modulators section to self modulate the attack and decay meaning that you can dial in whatever envelope curve you want. It's a pretty cool effect, that I use all the time on my bass and perc sounds.
Last edited by ::BLM:: on Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by hydrogen » Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:39 pm

steevio wrote:ok to answer tony,

i'm sure some beginners dont go as far as properly exploring envelopes, if youre using sampled loops etc..
i know i didnt fully explore their possibilities when i started out, i would just get a nice punchy decay on sounds slap some reverb on and away you go, not even thinking about what i could do with stuff like modulating the information in the sustain and release tails, to create musical reverb type effects instead of actually smoothering my sounds in effects, which was the effective and easy option.

if theres no mileage in the discussion for people, sorry, - i tried.
naw.. man its the focus of the thread my bad! Enveloping a sound is so general and yet so critical for interesting things to happen. At the core its the sculpting of the sound so of course you are going to use an envelope... it could also be interpreted as the expression of the sound. The implementation is different on different hardware, i remember a while ago that steevio mentioned the significant difference between them is in the speed of the envelopes... and the more hardware i get this is EXACTLY the case and too me its why my moog rogue sounds so much different the the vermona. (well they have different types of envelopes too... ADSR, AD)... but the speeds are different, one sounds more round than the other. My juno cannot make really sharp sounds because the envelopre is always kind of round. The monomachine also has really interesting envelopes... its not standard ADSR. some kind of other method.

Whats interesting to me is the use of triggered envelopes in a track, be it retriggering an LFO or ADSR. either way you are taking a preset path and applying it to some parameter(filter, volume, ...). This is definitely one of the biggest aspects of techno for me in the way the sounds are made. I find it difficult to find a similar analogue with acoustic instruments.
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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by oblioblioblio » Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:52 pm

I think the topic has some mileage, I think the thread title probably wasn't the best.

I just have 2 envelopes in my whole system and no traditional LFOs, bu I modulate the fck out of them, and they provide a lot of timing information, and I have some tools that can take these signals and move them around and combine them with other things.

I think there is a subtlety when modulating envelopes that is often overlooked, esepcially if using reverb. I think a lot of this subtlety comes from the VCA, which can overdrive or clip. I have a VCA that can respond to signals linearly or exponentially, and when exponential you can definitely get a strong overdriven click if desired.


Maybe it might be more interesting to expand the topic to other kinds of control signals as well? I have a soft spot for random changes, especially the smooth ones that come from Buchla Source of Uncertainty type devices.... wind/rain/ocean ... does it for me, that's for sure!

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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by steevio » Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:02 pm

as an example of something that may not have been considered.

has anyone used an envelope as an oscillator ? i'm sure the modular guys will have, but is that not transferrable to software world ?

i like to get an envelope shape that is really groovy, over say a beat or bar length, then loop it and take it up to audio speed, now its an oscillator in which you customised and sculptered the waveform in a different time dimension.

if you loop consecutive positive and inverted envelopes, you get more of a sine or pulse type effect, all positive and its more like a sawtooth or triangle. if you then start modulating the envelopes in different ways, you get an animated waveform rich in deep harmonics....
Last edited by steevio on Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by loopdon » Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:03 pm

steevio wrote:ok to answer tony,

i'm sure some beginners dont go as far as properly exploring envelopes, if youre using sampled loops etc..
i know i didnt fully explore their possibilities when i started out, i would just get a nice punchy decay on sounds slap some reverb on and away you go, not even thinking about what i could do with stuff like modulating the information in the sustain and release tails, to create musical reverb type effects instead of actually smoothering my sounds in effects, which was the effective and easy option.

if theres no mileage in the discussion for people, sorry, - we tried.
I really don't know what's wrong with forums, sometimes, Steevio.
I really just don't know. This might be interesting in this respect:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2 ... ger_effect

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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by AK » Mon Dec 05, 2011 4:08 pm

Opuswerk wrote:Groovy shakers pattern on the MD are very very tricky. imo the whole "groove" of the machinedrum isn't really the best around. I've obtained satisfying results with clever use of the delay and the LFOs, but never with enough control to my tastes. Always ended up playing them of or in ableton live.
I still dream they would implement something like the ableton groove templates in the machineDrum.
Yeah, I haven't had it all that long and I'm obviously still in a learning curve with it, so much so that I'm actually bouncing the shaker patterns ( or actually anything with a slow attack time ) into Live and just using the Track delay function on them to get things to sound as I want.

I like to shift things around in tiny amounts because I don't like every sound to have an instant attack, a lot of things are awkward when you try to do this and things end up sounding out of sync in a horrible way that does my head in, this is where I really prefer software/DAW app sequencing as I can shape sounds with the envelopes I want and not have them fall out of the groove I'm after.

On another note, does anyone create rhythms from their envelopes on a single patch? Certain synths offer this function extensively ( Absynth springs to mind in terms of software and Surge VST ) but I'm also after some other ideas for that. I think I need to find some chart or do the math to get me millisecond times of various tempos in like 16th, 8ths, 1/4 notes etc etc. Is there a formula for working this out. I could just look at the timings as I move through each duration in a sequencer but that will be time consuming.

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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by Opuswerk » Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:21 pm

steevio wrote:as an example of something that may not have been considered.

has anyone used an envelope as an oscillator ? i'm sure the modular guys will have, but is that not transferrable to software world ?

i like to get an envelope shape that is really groovy, over say a beat or bar length, then loop it and take it up to audio speed, now its an oscillator in which you customised and sculptered the waveform in a different time dimension.

if you loop consecutive positive and inverted envelopes, you get more of a sine or pulse type effect, all positive and its more like a sawtooth or triangle. if you then start modulating the envelopes in different ways, you get an animated waveform rich in deep harmonics....

This really looks like some next step shizzle :o i know a few synths (zebra, absynth) that allow you to draw your waveform, but i don't know if you can actually get them to a speed slow enough to hear how they groove. That would be something really cool :o

The sequencing options and cross modulation are really the one thing that might make me go modular. But i've decided to push my current gear first, and maybe delve into the moudlar sequencing offered by Numerology, but i don't know how far it is from a proper modular sequencer.

Btw do you mind uploading an example of what it sounds like?
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Re: Envelopes. Use em or lose em?

Post by steevio » Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:07 pm

Opuswerk wrote:
Btw do you mind uploading an example of what it sounds like?
i'm in the middle of recording some stuff right now, i'd have to repatch to do an example, will do later.

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