Refining Sound : A Practical Guide to Synthesis and Synthesizers.

This has been done in aerospace engineering for years in designing aircraft. There is a classical technique, actually a step-by-step recipe, for creating a finite element model that is guaranteed to work if you do it right. The texts on this subject are hard to read, even for someone with a strong mathematics background. This is because the engineers who work in this area have created their own little kingdom with their own little nomenclature for their little recipe, not because there is anything difficult to understand (it's called job security). The essential idea is that the resonant frequencies of an object are calculated. For music synthesis, we would be calculating the resonant frequncies of, say, a guitar string or a drum head. The sound is then created using additive synthesis. The drawback of this technique is that in its most reliable form, the recipe mentioned above, it is a linear modeling technique. This will take some explaining when the time comes.

Refining Sound: A Practical Guide to Synthesis and Synthesizers

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In the world of analogue synthesis, unpredictability brings animation, expression and life to not only sound but also to the compositional process. It was an essential component of the creation of a set of hand-drawn graphic scores for modular synth or improvisers.

Refining Sound : a Practical Guide to Synthesis and Synthesizers.

Offering some personal reflections on different methods of integrating the sounds of modular synthesis into her compositions and on the feel and design of some synth modules, Chelsea Bruno also describes her experiences as an improviser, performing as Eden Grey.

Extra info for Refining Sound: A Practical Guide to Synthesis and Synthesizers

A Short Introduction to Text-to-Speech Synthesis

A traversal of some common and less common themes and misconceptions that emerge from discussions about analogue and modular synthesis, including resurgence, obsolescence, “analogue sound”, higher and lower functional modals, interface, objectness and futurism.

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Of course, not everybody has access to an external filter bank, but there are a number of affordable units available. I have one of them... an Analogue Systems RS360 Vocal/Phase Filter Bank (as shown in Figure 5), so I will use this to replace the signal model in Figure 4 with that in Figure 6. By the way, note that Formant synthesis (for this is what we are discussing -- see the 'Band-pass Filter' box later) requires at least three formants per sound. This means that the RS360 or an equivalent is the minimum suitable configuration for our purposes.

Brian K. Shepard Refining Sound a Practical Guide to Synthesis and Synthesizers will be available on

Refining Sound Practical Synthesis Synthesizers Ebook …

This sample rate is sometimes referred to as "Hz", even though it's not technically describing actual back-and-forth (oscillating) motion.

When the soundcard has processed all of the samples provided, it requests a new sequence (or buffer).

Refining Sound A Practical Guide To Synthesis And …

So... how does it sound? Well, it has a 'bowing' sort of attack, and a similar timbre to a violin, but it still sounds little like a violin. It sounds like a synthesizer. On the other hand, if I were to pick up a violin and try to play it, the result would also sound nothing like a violin. The explanation for this is simple; I'm incapable of playing a bowed string instrument, and my attempts would surely incur the wrath of the Cats Protection League. Sure, I can scrape a basic tone from the instrument, but there is no finesse, no articulation, no feeling. And this is what is wrong with the patch I have just created. While a single note may sound vaguely like a bow being dragged across a violin string, a succession of notes have none of the attributes that make them sound like a musical instrument. So we're going to attempt to correct this by adding the most important element in the violinist's playing technique... vibrato.

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At this point, you may be wondering how on earth you go about tuning a filter bank to precise frequencies. Synthesizer filters with calibrated initial cutoff frequencies are vanishingly rare, and Analogue Systems' annotation from 'Min' to 'Max' is of no help whatsoever. So here's the trick...