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Topic: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

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  1. #1

    What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    Hi all,

    I am looking for advice on the best VI or library of synth-based sounds that are more soundscape -- not big complex hits that draw too much attention, but something that you can bend (as in pitch bend / twist / modify) or curl around an orchestral piece to make it dark and threatening. Something like some of the darker Distorted Reality noises. Definitely don't want "classic" synth sounds like Jupiters or something in that vein.

    Hope this is clear -- can't wait to hear what you come up with. I am on an Intel Mac quad and have external PCs running XP -- no Vista so far.

    Thank you!

    John
    Kind regards,

    John
    www.johngrahammusic.com

  2. #2

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    METAPHYSICAL FUNCTION from NI's Electronic Instruments 2 XT is a good choice for dark soundscapes - and obviously the next step up of Reaktor would provide an endless resource for pads etc. Alternatively, you can take the Distorted Reality route and manipulate everyday objects to your own style - you certainly won't get criticised for using "known" sounds that way.

  3. #3

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    so Reaktor is the best choice, in your view, but for the complexity?
    Kind regards,

    John
    www.johngrahammusic.com

  4. #4

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    Atmosphere has some good stuff for that, haven't checked out the new Sample Logic release but it looks to be in that vein as well.

    JK

  5. #5

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    Quote Originally Posted by ETM Dude
    Atmosphere has some good stuff for that, haven't checked out the new Sample Logic release but it looks to be in that vein as well.
    JK
    Is that Sample Logic's "The Elements?"
    Kind regards,

    John
    www.johngrahammusic.com

  6. #6

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    Ditto for Metaphysical F./Reaktor and Atmosphere and I would add
    Absynth with the Conrady and Biolabs presets.

  7. #7

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    The beauty of Reaktor and other big synths (Max/MSP, is another popular choice; Kyma is another - but I get the feeling that it's fiendishly priced.) is that due to modular design - the complexity is born out of the object-orientated nature of your designs.

    For example, you can take a plain TB-303 patch and incorporate a whole range of ideas - to make your own interpretation on what it should be. Adding oscillators, envelopes, filters and effects are all individual objects within the signal chain, so it can be as simple or complex as you desire, based on the quantity of objects you have in your design.

    Specifically, in your case the granular aspects will be most appealing - especially with the level of control/automation you have with modulation (which would give you the evolving aspect of the pad). Add a healthy dose of delay/reverb - again which would be well served with modulating (CSR is a good example of how modulation can help reverb), and your done.

  8. #8

    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    How about this? I have it's predecessor Morphology but never got round to getting this one.

    http://www.zero-g.co.uk/index.cfm?articleid=934


    Simon
    www.sounds-and-images.co.uk

    And now also at Flickr!

    http://flickr.com/photos/sounds-and-images/

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    NorthernSounds.NET.
    View Simon Fielder's Profile at NorthernSounds.net

  9. #9
    Senior Member Nigel W's Avatar
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    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    Yeah-Outer Limits is quite good but sometimes a bit more "outside" than you want, and the editing is not great compared to any current software sampler.

    There is really a massive amount of useable stuff available, even older sample CDs can be a goldmine, but IMO what counts is how you use it.

    I'm working in Logic, and the first thing I do with any pad or effect sound is assign controllers to the envelope and the filter. That way you can get maximum expression out of any sound.

    Usually, playing somwhere fairly low down will give you interesting and possibly useable results- when the sample is transposed low down, all kinds of subtleties come out because it plays back more slowly. And closing the filter always makes the sound "darker". A slow attack envelope, maybe moving the sample start back into the sample to hide the original identity, is often cool & "atmospheric".

    Then there are the plugins! You can mangle any sound beyond recognition and have a great time doing it ;-)!! I would really recommend the creative tools suite fron Sonalksis-check out the demos! But any plugins will do. Reverb is handy too, and even the most basic quality reverb & delays are very powerful for sound design- if you have convolution reverb, it can get even wilder.

    So maybe before you go spending money on a VI- and the first generation Kontakt Player VIs like Outer Limits have only quite basic editing & MIDI control possibilities- check out what you already have!

    HTH

    Nigel

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Re: What's the best VI for dark, atmospheric soundscape?

    Have you ever looked at Wusikstation? It is now up to version 4 and has matured to features like streaming from disk and key switching. There are a number of samplesets that have a dark atmospheric sound. A sampleset, based on the original Prophet VS wavs, has just been realesed. It may not be dark enough, but there are others that are.

    It is currently PC only, but a mac version is under development.

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