Using white noise as a modulation source to create randomness
We’re following up on creative uses of white noise, and today we’re looking at using it to create random modulations.
Last week we looked at using white noise as an audio source, and something to note about all the different types of noise is when you’re using them as an audio source – the difference is quite minimal. However, when you’re using them as a modulation source the characteristics of each type of white noise become more apparent.
You can use various plugins or synths; however, Serum really shines here because it comes with a variety of samples of different types of noise built-in. So, I’d definitely suggest playing around with all the different built-in noise samples for all sorts of randomness. Serum’s Warp Mode allows you to quickly link the noise oscillator to its FM input. The results are everything from R2-D2 robotic randomness to tweety-bird style squelches.
You’re not limited to only using white noise as an FM source, using Serum’s matrix you can assign the noise to modulate any parameter within Serum. This is great for adding subtle nuances to a patch that may seem too static, however for the squelchy psychedelic effects let’s go with a band-pass filter.
Let’s add some effects…
This technique really shines when coupled with the gating technique that I outlined in my “Ajja style leads” tutorial, you can use LFOtool or Serum’s built-in advanced LFO to draw in interesting gate patterns. The strength of using Serum’s built-in editor is you could potentially set it to modulate any parameter within your patch! I kept it simple for this tutorial, however you can imagine the possibilities.
You can either bounce out recorded loops and then later apply effects like reverb and delay, or you can apply them directly in Serum. This type of effect sounds really good with a Ping-Pong delay, so for this tutorial I used the built-in delay in Serum.
Once you have created the patch, it’s fun to flip through the different types of noise and tweak the pitch of each on to create a huge variety of different random effect sounds.
For a more detailed walk-through of the process, check out the video here: