Production Tutorial

Synthwave Production Explained®

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16 Videos | Length: 2hr 54min 59sec
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Chapter 1 : Getting Started

  • Introduction & Song Demo 3:37

    Introduction & Song Demo

    In this video, Thomas introduces the course, what will be covered, and plays the song that you'll be making together.

  • Characteristics of a Synthwave Track 4:55

    Characteristics of a Synthwave Track

    Learn what makes a Synthwave track distinct from other electronic music genres and the common bpm's of the style. This video also discusses the various subgenera's of Synthwave music and the types of sounds that are used.

Chapter 2 : Drums & Drum Arrangement

  • Kick & Snare 14:16

    Kick & Snare

    Thomas discusses what vintage drum machine samples are used for the drums in Synthwave tracks, and also explains how to create a driving drum patten that will be used as the foundation for the entire track.

  • 80's Synth Toms 7:57

    80's Synth Toms

    This video shows how to take the tom drums from a DMX style drum machine and use them to create an 80's inspired fill for our drum pattern. This drum fill will be used to give variation to the drum part.

  • Hi-Hats 9:08


    Learn what types of hi-hat samples are used in Synthwave tracks and the types of patterns that are used. These simple hi-hat pattens will provide an Additional element to the drums that will help move the track along.

  • Setting Up a Gated Reverb 11:26

    Setting Up a Gated Reverb

    Thomas now shows how to recreate the classic 80's gated reverb effect for drums, along with how to compress the reverb to make the sound even more punchy.

Chapter 3 : Synths & Melodic Arrangement

  • Stab Bass 14:28

    Stab Bass

    Discover the characteristics of a Synthwave stab bass and how it's used to give the song its driving feel, while being used as the melodic foundation for the track.

  • Arp Layer 10:55

    Arp Layer

    This video shows how to now create a synth arpeggio layer to accent the bass line, and help cary the melody of the track, as is commonly done in Synthwave music.

  • Chords 14:54


    See how chords are used in Synthwave music to fill out the track, and what suspended chords are and how they're used in Synthwave to create that nostalgic feeling.

  • Lead Synth & Counter Melody 13:54

    Lead Synth & Counter Melody

    Learn how lead synths are used as a focal point for the musical progressions in Synthwave music, including how they provide a counter melody that will accent the chords.

  • Vibrato Lead 7:44

    Vibrato Lead

    This video shows how to create a lead sound inspired by classic 80's guitar solos, and help create an epic feel and further focal point for the song.

  • Delayed Synth & Keys 14:50

    Delayed Synth & Keys

    Now watch how to add a "dreamy keys" element to the track that makes use of reverb and delay, and further plays up the nostalgic musical qualities commonly found in Synthwave tracks.

  • Pad 6:55


    Rich synth pads are commonly found in Synthwave tracks, providing an ambient background element for the song. See how!

Chapter 4 : Song Arrangement & Mixing

  • Song Arrangement & Fills 14:01

    Song Arrangement & Fills

    This video covers creating the common song arrangement for Synthwave music. While the arrangement of Synthwave tracks are more simple, the chord progressions and leads are layered together in such a way to keep interest by utilizing evolving musical sequences. Thomas explains!

  • Mixing 13:47


    Discover how bus mixing and processing is used to blend the song together, including how to adjust the volumes of the different elements so that the track is nice and balanced.

  • Mastering 12:12


    Learn the basics of mastering Synthwave music, including brightening up the track for added clarity and dimension, and using limiters and compressors to avoid unwanted volume level differences, plus beefing up the track overall.

Product Overview

Studio production pro Thomas Cochran teleports you back to the '80s with in-depth Synthwave production video tutorials that show how to create the sounds and produce the tracks that make this popular genre so powerful. These videos are perfect for beginner Synthwave producers or anyone looking for more insight on how this genre is made. If you want to first learn how to make killer Synthwave sounds, check out Synthwave Sound Design Explained® here.

Thomas utilizes UVI virtual instruments in the videos, but you can use any virtual instruments that are similar in tone to build your Synthwave productions. starts with what will be covered, and then plays the song that you'll be making together for reference. He then explains what makes a Synthwave track distinct from other electronic music genres, the common BPMs found in the style, and then discusses the various subgeneras of Synthwave music and the types of sounds that are used.

To get started producing the Synthwave track, Thomas starts with the drums, showing you what vintage drum machine samples are commonly used, and demonstrates how to program a driving drum patten that works as the foundation for the entire track.

Throughout the video series, you'll learn all about what makes Synthwave so special, including the use of Gated Reverbs, the various synth elements found like Stab Bass, Arpeggios, Lead Synths, Pads and much more. You'll also see how to arrange and mix the complete Synthwave production giving it that nostalgic shine.

To see what these comprehensive Synthwave production tutorials show you, and how they'll enable you to produce your own authentic sounding Synthwave tracks from scratch, see the individual Synthwave production video tutorial descriptions on this page. Start making cool retro-future sounding songs and beats today... Watch "Synthwave Production Explained®" now.

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