Logic Pro Tutorial

Logic Pro: Drum Synthesis Explained®

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20 Videos | Length: 3hr 20min 59sec
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    Kick Drum Theory

    In this video, see how to read waveforms to understand kick drum synthesis techniques, as well as how to recognize clipping, tonal aspects and stereo width.

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    Kicks in Drum Synth

    Next up learn a simplified approach to creating kicks in Drum Synth. We start by outlining the general workflow when working with Drum Synth and then continue on to demonstrate the different parameters that help to create different types of kicks.

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    Kicks in Ultrabeat

    In this first video, on synthesized kicks, we use a simple phase oscillator in Ultrabeat with an envelope modulating pitch to create the trademark transient snap for the attack. We also cover tweaking the amplitude envelope to create a typical kick drum contour. Finally, we cover different ways you can manipulate the waveform to add extra harmonics.

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    Component Modeling Kick

    Now see how to synthesize a kick using the component modeling setting of oscillator 2. This mimics a string being struck and has a slightly more organic feel to it. This is then blended with the noise oscillator for some extra attack.

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    White Noise Kick

    Watch how a white noise kick is created by filtering the noise oscillator with a fast decaying envelope with resonance on the filter.

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    FM Kick

    In this video, we re-apply the principles from the phase oscillator kick, but this time we employ the FM setting of oscillator 1. This gives a different flavor for the kick drum as modulating the FM amount creates an attack with extra FM harmonics. Again, we add some noise to the attack to help this sound cut through a little more. Finally, we audition using oscillator 2 in different modes to modulate the first oscillator. For the first time we also add in some of the distortion effects that are available to us in Ultrabeat.

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    Layered Kick

    Next up, we use a hybrid approach of using a sample with the amp envelope with fast decay and no attack, allowing only the transient to be heard. For the body, we use a slow attack on a pitch modulated oscillator, which is combined to create a big layered kick sound.

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    Snare Drums in Drum Synth

    In this video, we have a look at a simplified approach to snares and claps using Logic's Drum Synth. We continue to explain the different parameters available for each preset start point.

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    Snare Drums in Ultrabeat Pt. 1

    Now we create an FM style snare drum in this video layered with white noise and utilizing fast decaying envelopes. A reverb is added to create a sustain tail and as well as realism.

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    Snare Drums in Ultrabeat Pt. 2

    Next up we create a hybrid snare drum by using firstly component modeling, then the phase oscillator layered with white noise, a sample, and some foley sound. We also use a combination of saturation and reverb to make the sound more unified and "real".

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    Synthesized Clap

    Now it's time for the claps, and you'll see how to build a clap sound from white noise modulated with an LFO, set to only modulate the attack of the sound. This is then filtered and modulated with a fast decaying envelope.

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    Percussion in Drum Synth

    In this video, we cover the drum synth approach to percussion. We also outline the functions of different parameters that relate to our preset start points.

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    Laser Zap

    Watch how to create an FX style laser zap which we bring to life using Smart Controls assigned to Ultrabeat parameters. This allows you to modulate the sound over time.

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    Now see how to create an electronic woodblock with 2 oscillators tuned separately, with a fast decaying pitch envelope.

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    Electronic Toms

    Next up, we create an electronic tom using FM synthesis with a fast decaying pitch envelope, short snappy amp envelope and filter modulation. We also experiment with using component modeling for the FM modulator, and add white noise for extra bite. EQ is then added to bring the sound to life a little more. Finally, we copy and pitch these voices to create high, mid and low variations.

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    Drum Synth Cymbals

    In this video, you'll learn a simplified approach to creating hats and cymbals using Logic's Drum Synth.

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    Closed Hat

    See how t use the ring modulator to create a ringing tone for the metallic part of a closed hat sound, and then add the all-important white noise oscillator to add that high end fizz and sizzle which characterizes a classic hat sound.

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    Open Hats & Alternative Closed Hat

    Now see how to make a new closed hat sound using FM synthesis and white noise, and then alter that to create an open hat. We then demonstrate how these can be choked so that only one sound plays at a time to create trademark hi-hat rhythms.

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    Synthetic Bell

    Moving on, watch how to use component modeling combined with ring modulation to create a bell style sound with metallic inharmonic overtones.

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    Creating a Custom Kit in Drum Machine Designer

    Wrapping it all up, see how to add our sounds into a Drum Machine Designer, and program a rhythm, and then add compression with soft clipping and reverb with a modulator MIDI effect to keep the transient punchy.

Product Overview

Logic guru Larry Holcombe brings you Logic Pro video tutorials covering everything you need to know to fully understand drum synthesis and program your own impactful drum sounds from scratch, using nothing but Logic Pro! To make learning this topic easier, you also get all the patches that are created in the video tutorials, as well as the Logic Pro session and samples, so you can follow along on your system. These videos are for those who already know how to use Logic Pro, but want to get a deeper understanding of the art of sound designing electronic drum sounds in Logic Pro.

Larry greets you and first starts off with how to read waveforms to better understand drum synthesis design and techniques, as well as how to recognize clipping, different tonal signatures, and stereo width. Then it's onto the mighty kick drum, and you'll learn the general workflows when using Logic's Drum Synth, Ultrabeat, and Drum Machine Designer, including the various parameters that are used to create a variety of kick sounds, and more.

Then you'll dive into the wonderful world of snare drums, seeing and hearing exactly how to craft the snappiest of snares step by step using different techniques. In fact, this series contains so much information, it's not possible to list everything in this brief description. Some of the topics Larry presents cover Component Modeling, using White Noise, FM Synthesis, Layering Samples, Hybrid Sound Design techniques and much more! Watch step by step how to fabricate Kicks, Snares, Cymbals, Hi-Hats, Toms, Synthetic Bells and Percussion, as well as cool Special FX, all using the awesome tools and functions found in Logic Pro.

To see what these detailed Logic Pro drum sound design video tutorials show you, and how they'll empower you to create just about any synth drum sound you can imagine, see the individual Logic Pro tutorial descriptions on this page. Create and add drum sounds that are fire to your Logic Pro songs and productions today... Watch "Logic Pro: Drum Synthesis Explained®" now.

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1. When did you start dabbling in music?

I learnt the trumpet and piano around age 12 and then guitar a couple of years later. I played in a few indie bands for a few years until I discovered the turntables and Dj'ing. I then swapped the guitar for the synthesizer and the stage for the Dj booth and the rest is history!

2. What training have you had?

I completed a diploma in sound engineering and music technology from islington Music Workshop in London. I am also level 1 certified in Logic. The most important training I have received though is sitting for hours on end at my studio making music!

3. When did you get into recording?

Recording demos for the indie bands I mentioned earlier. Then recording vocals for my tracks as DEF inc. and laterally Rebel Sonix. I also worked in London studio Rollover in around 2005.

4. People you have worked with/for?

I've remixed Coldplay, Kylie, Roots Manuva and John B. Labels I have released on include Parlaphone, EMI, Fingerlickin, Eight Fx, Quantum, Botchit and Scarper amongst others. I have composed music for Sony Playstation games, Sky tv, J&B Whiskey, Lexus cars and the BBC to name a few. I have produced online tutorial videos and have had a 1 hour production video in Music Techs magazines cover DVD. I have also Dj'ed at events such as Glastonbury festival and Miami WMC and touring extensively all over the world.

5. Why are you so good at training people?

Well hopefully I have a clear and concise training method mixed with a serious passion for making music. I have previously worked for Apple teaching Logic and also regularly lecture on Logic and electronic music production. I also teach the Ministry of Sound DJ academy in London which involves teaching an introduction to Djing as well as in depth seminars on using NI's Traktor and also Serato Scratch Live. As a producer making cutting edge electronic music, I have to remain at the forefront of new sounds and production techniques. I mix my time between different areas of the music industry - production, remixing, DJing and also teaching which allows me to develop all those skills simultaneously - so I can improve my teaching ability whilst also continuing to develop as a producer (something which you never stop doing!)

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