Using White Noise to add extra punch to a synth sound
Today’s production tutorial looks into using white noise less as a sound design tool and more of a mixing tool.
Often using too much spatial effects on a sound can drown it out in the mix, especially when it’s accompanied by very transient and plucky sounds that drive the focus away from that sound. In the example track I have a synth sound that I’ve applied some heavy delay and reverb on, with this type of main atmospheric synth sound I generally like to render out a dry and wet version of the signal. Adjusting the volumes here can help to bring the sound back into focus, however there is another technique that will still retain the atmospheric effect from the delays and reverb.
Splitting up the channels also allows you to create varying amounts of effect, from dry to wet which is great for arranging. The idea in today’s tutorial is to create a short plucky sound using white noise, and envelope and a very short decay. You want the new white noise pluck to layer over the original synth sound, I generally like to keep any MIDIs I create, so I just drag it onto the new track.
Let’s get into the routing and processing…
I like to route the three channels (Dry, wet and white noise pluck) into a group, that way I have easy control over the volume of the entire sound, as well as the ability to apply some compression which will help to bring the sounds together. Once I have it all routed, I go back to the decay setting of the envelope and fine tune it to fit the overall sound. It’s important to reference the group soloed as well as alongside the rest of the mix.
If you have segments of the track which don’t need that extra punch, this is where having all the separate channels helps as you can just mute the added white noise transients in those parts.
For a more in-depth walkthrough, check out the video here: