MASSIVE X Tips & Tricks

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34 Videos | Length: 1hr 34min 59sec
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  • Introduction 0:53


    Adam welcomes you to the course and gives a preview of what he will be covering.

  • Custom Reverb Pre-Delay 3:06

    Custom Reverb Pre-Delay

    Learn how to create custom length reverb pre-delay, e.g. 1/8th division, so the reverb rhythmically happens in time with your son's tempo. This uses a creative routing setup, and allows for more longer and more precise pre-delay times than the default unit/global FX allows.

  • Gain Compensation 2:03

    Gain Compensation

    Find out how to adjust gain/volume, mid-preset, using the Correction Filter Insert FX. I first demonstrate the problem this solves, that of gain staging, and levels being too low/high.

  • Realistic String Instrument 2:28

    Realistic String Instrument

    Create a realistic sounding string instrument by using an Envelope as a Mod Source, and routing that into a Resonating Comb Filter. Further, see how swapping out the Comb for a Creak Filter gives a useful "pop", granted, not in-tune, whereas the the first example was.

  • Realistic Horn Instrument 3:07

    Realistic Horn Instrument

    This video adds Feedback into the previous video, creating a seriously realistic horn. This is a great example of how powerful feedback and routing can be in Massive X. In addition, we cover dry/wet routing structure, unit/global FX parallel vs series routing, and the importance of track delay in a feedback loop.

  • Playing Wavetables as 1Hz Samples 6:29

    Playing Wavetables as 1Hz Samples

    Learn how to play what I call "sub sub notes", notes so low in pitch that we stop hearing the cycles as tones, but rather more like samples, e.g. at 1Hz and therefore once per second. This is one of my favorite tricks to make some of the most unique and interesting sounds and soundscapes (and very few people know about this).

  • Custom LFO Shapes 1:21

    Custom LFO Shapes

    Discover how to create custom, more complex, or just different, LFO shapes using performer. The standard LFO shapes are limited in both shape and start position, but this approach gives you literally infinite possibilities.

  • Keyzones 4:28


    Explore configuring Keyzones in Massive X, using the Tracking Mod sources, so you can play different Oscillators, or even different instruments, with different parts of the keyboard. Such as a bass sound in the lower half for the left hand, and a lead sound in the higher half for the right hand.

  • Arpeggios 2:49


    Learn how to create arpeggios using performer, and why for this to make any sense (compared to creating it in the DAW), we must use the arp to modulate something else in Massive X too, such as a wavetable position, giving each note of the arp a different cycle/waveform.

  • Mapping Two Parameters Equally 1:32

    Mapping Two Parameters Equally

    Discover a trick for how to set two parameters at exactly the same value (in this case, using a macro). This is important because you can't currently "double click for type-able values".

  • Mod Wheel to Choose Waveform 1:17

    Mod Wheel to Choose Waveform

    When not modulating wavetable position, it can be more interesting to audition tables and cycles by first assigning it to the mod wheel. This workflow tip saves lots of time, as the table selector doesn't automatically close, and using the mouse for everything is slower than using both hands and multiple inputs.

  • Routing Templates 6:36

    Routing Templates

    See how to create templates for all your standard routing structures, to save time configuring them. I share my three main examples, and then take it further by reconfiguring other "standard" things you do, such as engine reset and much more.

  • Creating Rhythm with Performer 2:25

    Creating Rhythm with Performer

    See how to use performer to create rhythm, in this case on a bassline, but it applies to everything else too. I also share tips for how best to create the rhythm. It's not all random, there's some structure there too.

  • Creative Unison Modulation 2:16

    Creative Unison Modulation

    Explore this interesting and unique unison modulation, modulating from thick mono/central unison, into a unison chord. This is something you can only really do with Massive X.

  • Inharmonic Distortion Pt. 1 3:23

    Inharmonic Distortion Pt. 1

    Frequency shifting then distorting, is a way to make some of the most aggressive sounds. Find out how an inharmonic sound inputted into distortion creates a spectrally thick sound, with super interesting movement. I show how all this fits together by showing each step in a spectrum analyzer.

  • Inharmonic Distortion Pt. 2 3:33

    Inharmonic Distortion Pt. 2

    Now see how to use Unison/Chord Crossfade on a sine wave to create an inharmonic base, which then, after distortion, creates a super unique tone. It evolves in a way unlike any other synthesis structure.

  • Sound Design the Release 3:11

    Sound Design the Release

    Sound design the "release", i.e. make something happen when you release the note. The first example uses an envelope on reverb pre-delay, and the second example is more subtle, subtly "closing off" a bass when the note is released.

  • Offset Notes 1:41

    Offset Notes

    Using envelope delay to create what I call "offset notes", i.e. playing two pitches, slightly offset in time. You could do this in MIDI, but setting this up in a preset is creatively different, and results in you writing different types of musical ideas.

  • Adding a Sub Oscillator 3:53

    Adding a Sub Oscillator

    See how to add a sub oscillator (using an Insert Osc), and a few things to watch out for when doing so, e.g. what octave to pitch it at, and whether or not to route it through the main effects, or to bypass the main effects.

  • Feedback Loops & Frequency Shifters 4:15

    Feedback Loops & Frequency Shifters

    In this video, I explore feedback loops and frequency shifters, in this case, creating some random firework sounds. See how feedback loops generally work best with track delay in the feedback loop.

  • How to Make Bubble Leads 1:25

    How to Make Bubble Leads

    Use the same mod source for both pitch and amplitude to create what I call a "bubble lead". This includes a useful detail about setting performer divisions so that modulations go precisely up to octaves, making it sound more natural, and in-tune. Also, explore stretching the modulation shape for a similar, but different effect.

  • Phase & Engine Reset 3:32

    Phase & Engine Reset

    What is oscillator phase? When does it matter? Why should the default be to use "engine reset" to reset phase? It's all about making notes consistent and predictable when you have more than one oscillator or unison. It's about the"phase offset" or "phase difference".

  • Noise Oscillator Phase 3:20

    Noise Oscillator Phase

    Explore restarting noise phase and how we can use this, for example, to pick out a specific transient, from a long noise sample containing lots of transients and other sounds. This is a great to layer on a synth to define the start of the sound, and could also be used to pick out individual words from one of the vocal noise samples.

  • Noise Oscillator One Shots 2:32

    Noise Oscillator One Shots

    Learn how to use envelopes to turn the noise oscillator into a "one shot". It's sounds like an easy thing to do , but the solution in MASSIVE X isn't obvious at all.

  • Keytracking & Pitch Modulating the Noise Osc 5:05

    Keytracking & Pitch Modulating the Noise Osc

    Learn about keytracking and pitch modulating the noise oscillator. Why is Keytracking useful? Regarding pitch modulation, I share two riser ideas, and a fast envelope to add punch/definition to the start of a sound.

  • Noise Layering Examples 1:51

    Noise Layering Examples

    Now discover two examples of layering noises. The first one adds "grit" to an aggressive sound. The second fills out the mix spectrally (frequency spectrum), and adds unique character/personality.

  • Creating Clicks with Phase Modulation 1:44

    Creating Clicks with Phase Modulation

    Learn how to use Phase Modulation (PM) and a fast envelope, to create a click at the front of a sound. It's more interesting and less common than using a fast envelope with pitch modulation (the more standard approach).

  • Velocity 2:14


    Velocity is how hard you play a note. Why is it useful? How do we map it in Massive X? And what do we typically map it to?

  • Modulating Delay Time 2:11

    Modulating Delay Time

    Try modulating time delay, whilst the delay is still ringing out. Using this effect on note release is fun too! I also explain briefly why this re-pitch effect happens.

  • Random Flanger Steps 2:35

    Random Flanger Steps

    Random step modulations of a flange filter, in manual mode, is an interesting technique for creating soundscapes. I explain how a flanger is really just a delay with a very short time, and so this principle works just like how it did in the modulating delay time video.

  • Pads & Hidden Voices 1:41

    Pads & Hidden Voices

    See this simple trick to turn anything into a pad, and then an arguably more interesting trick. The more interesting one involves modulating something you wouldn't normally modulate, but something that makes these hidden voices appear. Magical!

  • Offset Unsynced LFOs 2:14

    Offset Unsynced LFOs

    See how to use two defining LFOs, and have them un-synced to the grid (i.e. free), creating this offset that's much more rhythmically interesting.

  • Bases for Common Sound Types 2:08

    Bases for Common Sound Types

    As a workflow idea, create "bases" for standard sound types, to save time configuring standard setups over and over again. I share two examples in this video, a "whoop", and a low passed unison pad.

  • Mapping Macros to Physical Controls 1:41

    Mapping Macros to Physical Controls

    Assign macros to useful parameters in Massive X (e.g. Wavetable position, and the wavetable mode parameters), and then map these to physical controls. It's more enjoyable to gets hands on with the preset, and unlike the mouse, this allows you to change two things at once (as you have two hands).

Product Overview

Adam Pollard reveals a ton of tip & trick MASSIVE X tutorials! Learn way cool, creative sound design and workflow ideas for MASSIVE X. These MASSIVE X videos are for the person who is familiar with MASSIVE X, but wants to go deeper and learn eye and mind opening tips and techniques when using MASSIVE X to get amazing sonic results.

Adam welcomes you then jumps right in with in-depth MASSIVE X tutorials on setting up Custom Reverb Pre-Delay, Gain Compensation for a cleaner sound, creating realistic string and horn patches, utilizing Wavetables to create huge sub bass notes, custom LFO shapes for more interesting sounds and other sound design tricks.

Next, discover how to make complex Arpeggios using the performer feature, cool mapping and routing tricks, tips for making polyrhythms, using Unison Modulation, creating Inharmonic Distortion, crafting Bubble Leads, Pads, and even how to unlock Hidden Voices in MASSIVE X and much, much more!

To see what each MASSIVE X tutorial teaches you and how they can help you use MASSIVE X more creatively, see the individual MASSIVE X tutorial descriptions on this page. If you're ready to get into sound design with MASSIVE X, this series of MASSIVE X Tip and Trick videos will open the universe of MASSIVE X to you... See how to make great sounds with MASSIVE, watch “MASSIVE X Tips & Tricks” today.

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