Additive Synthesis (and Resynthesis)

Rather than using specific hardware, relatively ordinary PCs with popular sound cards have the ability to emulate oscillators, ADSRs, filters, frequency modulators, samplers, etc in real time. The generic nature of PCs allows users to connect up virtual synthesiser components in many familiar and totally new ways via intuitive user interfaces. The result can be very impressive, for instance it's hard to tell the difference between a real minimoog and a virtual minimoog created in Native-Instruments Generator software. Synthesiser components can be selected from menus, dragged around, inter-connected and assigned virtual controllers such as knobs and sliders.

Basic Subtractive and Additive Synth Patches

Subtractive Synthesis will be available on

FM (Frequency Modulation) Synthesis

Sawtooth waves are created by adding a number of Sine waves together (this is one of the fundamentals of additive synthesis, which we’ll look at in an upcoming article).

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Visual color literally does not exist outside individual consciousness. There is an enormous body of evidence to show that color experience is remarkably personal: it varies significantly across individuals, for a variety of reasons (genetics, age, experience). In addition, the same radiant color can appear as very different visual colors, depending on the intensity of the light and the context in which it is viewed. As a practical matter, then, the connection between a material color and visual color can be highly variable across individuals and viewing contexts.

There are two main modules of a synth that we use to modulate the signal – LFOs and Envelopes.

How Subtractive Synthesizers Work

A pigment such as quinacridone violet (PV19) does not have fixed radiant color attributes. The reflectance curve, and hence the apparent color under standard viewing conditions, changes with the physical state of the pigment — the pigment may be dry or wet, it may be suspended in water or oil, it may be diluted or concentrated, it may be displayed as a thin or thick layer (diagram, right). In most colorants, each of these physical changes will alter the radiant and the colorant's subtractive mixture behavior.

Subtractive Synthesis - Soundridge - SoundBridge

So long as we only consider the radiant color only, or the mixture of separate radiant colors that stimulate the eye at the same time (for example, when two beams of filtered light are overlapped on a white surface, or two pigment or ink colors are visually mixed with a color top), then we are in the domain of additive color theory. Predicting these color mixtures using the separate reflectance curves is straightforward and, as perceptual prediction goes, remarkably precise.

each subtractive primary reflects or transmits the light representing two additive primary colors

Subtractive Synthesis | The Synthesizer Academy

Because any two subtractive primaries will share reflectance in either the "red," "green" or "blue" wavelengths associated with a single additive primary color, any two subtractive primaries share reflectance that stimulates a single photoreceptor. Yellow and magenta share "red" reflectance that stimulates the L cone, yellow and cyan share "green" reflectance that stimulates the M cone, and magenta and cyan share "blue" reflectance that stimulates the S cone.

the subtractive primary colors as additive RGB lights and as additive RGB pixels

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These conceptual examples demonstrate that there is no logical or necessary connection between the of two substances and the color of their subtractive mixture. There can never be universal or invariable color mixing rules in subtractive color mixing — they simply don't exist.

Sound Design: Subtractive vs Additive Synthesis - …

We place the two filters in front of a single beam of "white" light. Then the apparent color of the transmitted light is the additive (retinal) mixture of all the wavelengths passed by the subtractive (material) mixture of the separate spectral transmittance profiles.