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Making It Steeper

The OB-8 has a 24db/octave filter. In this case, whilst it is more aggressive in terms of frequency removal, its maximum resonance is tamer.

Pic 17a - f.plot - noise only - 4-pole - full res.

An altogether different beast is the Roland TB-303, which attained classic status despite its clear deficiencies – on paper at least. It has a choice of two simple wave shapes and an extremely basic envelope, but the filter has a distinctive watery quality, most noticeable when resonance is increased and the cutoff is controlled by the decay envelope. As the TB-303 has no means of external parameter control, this has to be done by hand in real-time.

Here we used only the square wave and tweaked filter cutoff, resonance, envelope modulation amount and envelope decay time. Notice how the low end drops in level as resonance is pushed up.

Many classic uses of the 303 involved the addition of a distortion pedal (Josh Wink’s ‘Higher State of Consciousness’ being one classic example), but the sound of an unprocessed 303 is still immediately recognisable. Here we see how a filter sweep of a raw sawtooth wave sounds with three different resonance settings:

Pic 21a - spectrogram.

Pic 21b - spectrogram.

Pic 21c - spectrogram.

As mentioned earlier, Bob Moog was famous for – amongst many other things – his 24 dB/octave low-pass filter. We can experiment with this in the digital realm by using the UAD Moog Multimode Filter and FilterFreak both switched to 4-pole low-pass mode.

Both plugins allow you to tweak how the audio level interacts with the filter. Driving a filter harder and/or pushing up the resonance can lead to saturation – something that works well if a ballsier tone is required.

Once again, we can put Diva to the test with an analogue-style saw wave and a ‘vintage’ 24 dB/octave filter sweep.

20th October, 2015

Technique is sponsored by

Spitfire Audio

Spitfire Audio is a British company founded by two film composers looking to revolutionise sampling.

They set about recording the world’s finest players in the best locations in order to capture samples of unrivalled quality. Used across the music, gaming and film industry, Spitfire has become the go-to for producers and composers looking to add truly authentic sounds to their works.

With offices in Central London and a growing workforce of experienced music, film and recording professionals, their revolution continues.

www.spitfireaudio.com

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