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MutingSociety
03-19-2010, 01:39 AM
Hey guys,

I'm currently doing a music production degree and though I know a lot about synthesizers, i'm still trying to get my head around synth pads which have always been interesting to try and recreate.

Now, here's my question, I took a listen to the soundtrack to Final Fantasy XIII and listened to the "Game Over" track in particular. I really like the opening and overlying texture of the (what I assume to be) synth pad in the track. So I was wondering how I could go about recreating it?

I thought i'd be cool if I could use a similar ambient, dark toned part in my composition as its just the sort of sound i've been looking for. However, with this particular synth pad, i'm stuck on where to start in terms of recreating it. I have no idea what the base sound is and only a few ideas as to what has been done to craft this dark toned pad. Masashi Hamauzu did similar stuff in the Dirge of Cerberus soundtrack and i'd really like to find out how he achieves such rich pads.

I'm still stuck, hence coming here for help and would be very appreciative of any advice anyone can offer.

Btw, i'm using the following: Macbook Pro 17" (4GB Ram), Logic Studio 9, EWQLSO Gold, GPO, Omnisphere

Thanks!

AMT
03-19-2010, 02:06 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ukt78aXKaBA

Is this the track you're talking about? It sounds like a plucked stringed instrument to me (Maybe a harp of some sort?), but if you want a synth to sound like that I think you might want to try an FM synth. Others around here know way more about that than I do, but it should be somewhere to start.

MutingSociety
03-19-2010, 02:22 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ukt78aXKaBA

Is this the track you're talking about? It sounds like a plucked stringed instrument to me (Maybe a harp of some sort?), but if you want a synth to sound like that I think you might want to try an FM synth. Others around here know way more about that than I do, but it should be somewhere to start.

Thanks for the reply, unfortunately thats not the one.

Found the one i'm on about on YouTube here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUbloECbDmg

If you have any ideas, that'd be great. Its the opening synth pad and the overall underlying synth under the piano part for the rest of the piece.

Thanks once again!

Hy Bound
03-19-2010, 03:45 AM
That sounds like a grain cloud to me. Grain clouds are made with granular synths (i don't believe you have one unless omnisphere can do it). Basically whats happening is the producer placed a sample (in this case some kind of choir and synth combo) into what is basically a sampler that plays small snippets of that sound over and over while using an lfo-controlled parameter to move the snippet through the length of the sample. You can do this yourself with a sampler and automating the sample length and sample start parameters, then adding reverb and delay.

Otherwise, Reaktor has a number of granular synths and effects and i believe there are also a couple of free ones over at kvr audio.

MutingSociety
03-19-2010, 07:10 AM
That sounds like a grain cloud to me. Grain clouds are made with granular synths (i don't believe you have one unless omnisphere can do it). Basically whats happening is the producer placed a sample (in this case some kind of choir and synth combo) into what is basically a sampler that plays small snippets of that sound over and over while using an lfo-controlled parameter to move the snippet through the length of the sample. You can do this yourself with a sampler and automating the sample length and sample start parameters, then adding reverb and delay.

Otherwise, Reaktor has a number of granular synths and effects and i believe there are also a couple of free ones over at kvr audio.

Thanks for the response Hy Bound.

I think your right, I took a listen once again and its just masked in a ton of reverb with maybe a few sine wave tones here and there as a separate instrument. Having a thorough listen it sounds like there are various other components in there aside from a main sound which could be a choir like you said.

I'm still fairly new to Omnisphere, its got a Granular synth section so i'll do some research and begin breaking down the elements of the sound on the "Game Over" track to try and recreate it using Omnisphere because from some of the basic presets i've heard on Omnisphere, I could probably get it quite close.

Once again, thanks for the help/advice :)

Arcana
03-19-2010, 10:56 PM
If you're using Logic Pro 9, you might want to experiment also with the Sculpture physical modelling synth. Using a 'bow' or 'blown' plus something that's "glass" or "steel", you can make textures like the underlying pad.

Yoozer
03-20-2010, 07:39 PM
The answer is ridiculous stereo imaging (probably caused by clever layering) and timestretching. The trouble is finding the correct source to do this with. This is sort of granular-ish since that's what timestretching does.

See http://hypermammut.sourceforge.net/paulstretch/ and listen to my old example I can't help but trot out every time because I haven't made anything new here (http://www.theheartcore.com/music/paulstretch_mardigras.mp3). That's Bob James' "Take Me To The Mardi Gras" stretched 8 times. Stretching doesn't make everything awesome, but take something without (or with just modest) percussion and you can hit gold.

However - you could try to un-stretch it with the same application and see if it's a fragment of an earlier game. Who knows.