I’ve started doing some sample-based sound design work in ElectraX. I’ve found a few handy convenience menus and templates that will save you some time.
Quick Import Sample
First off, there is a quick import option if you want to use a sample as an oscillator source. Click File then “Quick Import Sample”.
Then click the Load button to load the sample.
Quick Import Vocoder
Follow the same process as for loading samples and select “Quick Import Vocoder”. This loads your source sample (vocals, drums…) into OSC2 of Synt1 which is auto-configured as the Modulator. Synt2 is auto-configured as the carrier with an Ultrasaw synth method for Osc1 by default.
You can change the character of the synth sound by programming Synt2. I want to point out that ElectraX has no routings for processing and external audio source as a modulator in real-time. Nevertheless, being able to trigger modulator samples from keys is a pretty handy way to do vocoding.
You can quickly resynthesize sample data and then use that as a wavetable controlled by PW (pulse width). Change Osc type to “Wavetable”. Click the “Resynthesis” label to load an audio sample. PW1 now sweeps through the wavetable. In the screen shot below you can see I’m using LFO to modulate through the table.
Below is an excerpt from the manual the describes how waveforms are imported based on sample length.
Saving Patches with Wave Data
With many sample-based instruments, the waveform data referenced by the synth is stored externally in a folder making it necessary to extra steps to package up the patches and sample files to share with others.
I was excited to find that when a patch uses Sampler, Vocoder, and/or Wavetable synth types that the sample data is automatically stored in the patch (.fxp) when you do a “File->Save Patch”. Woot!
Rapid Patch Programing with Original Harmonic Content
While ElectraX isn’t intended to replace a full-on sampler, these features will allow you to quickly incorporate original harmonic content into your patches. You may find yourself reaching for your sampler less with ElectraX in your rig.
Artist site: http://www.markmoshermusic.com
Host of Sonic Encounters Podcast: http://markmoshermusic.com/podcast/.
Boulder Synthesizer Meetup founder and host: http://www.bouldersynth.com