Author Topic: Resources for FM sound design?  (Read 645 times)

hitachii

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Resources for FM sound design?
« on: March 11, 2021, 06:47:07 PM »
Starting to become more familiar with designing sounds on the PFM2, and often finding combinations of envelopes, modulations, etc. which work in great ways.

I'm looking for something like a cheat sheet, in video form, or even a whole book, any sort of media about FM sound design. It would be nice to know what to expect from certain arrangements of envelopes/mods and carriers, in order to build off of those sounds.

Since PFM2 is an FM synth where most others are PM, does this make the timbres *completely* different, or is it subtle? It's been mentioned here that above 3 operators, FM differs from PM, but how drastically? The reason I ask is to know if it's useless to use resources that talk about PM with regards to the PFM2.

Any resources, suggestions, links, etc. would be greatly appreciated!

Xavier

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Re: Resources for FM sound design?
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2021, 09:10:24 AM »
Since PFM2 is an FM synth where most others are PM, does this make the timbres *completely* different, or is it subtle? It's been mentioned here that above 3 operators, FM differs from PM, but how drastically? The reason I ask is to know if it's useless to use resources that talk about PM with regards to the PFM2.

No it's not useless.
They're very similar. The resulting spectrum is  different where 3 operators or more are used in a row.

Spectrum is different but the idea behind is still exactly the same.
So if you understand how PM/FM works you'll understand how FM/PM works.


Any resources, suggestions, links, etc. would be greatly appreciated!

Sorry i'm lazy  ;)
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=synthesis+frequency+modulation

But i think i remeber this one it quite a good start :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yB2QfDQh5Vc


fori

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Re: Resources for FM sound design?
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2021, 06:09:10 PM »
To really understand FM synthesis, you need to think about the C:M ratio and its impact on the harmonics. Here are some good resources for making sense of that aspect of FM.

Two great articles from the SoS Synth Secrets series:
https://www.soundonsound.com/techniques/introduction-frequency-modulation
https://www.soundonsound.com/techniques/more-frequency-modulation

By far the most useful resource I've found on FM. The webpage looks like it's from the 90's, but the content is solid:
https://www.sfu.ca/~truax/fmtut.html

Another good resource on the C:M ratios:
https://www.adsrsounds.com/fm8-tutorials/theory-behind-fm-synthesis/

A lot of math, but you don't need to understand it in any detail:
http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~music/icm-online/readings/fm-synthesis/index.html

Also, Manny Fernandez has a bunch of good tutorials full of classic FM tricks; they're all focused on Yamaha DX synths, but the same concepts apply here
https://yamahasynth.com/learn/blogger/manny-yamaha-com

John Chowning's book FM Theory & Applications: By Musicians for Musicians is a little dated and very focused on the DX7, but still tremendously useful. Somewhere online I found a pdf copy of it at some point.

Likewise, The Complete DX7 by Howard Massey is focused on the DX7, but full of several clever tricks that would work on the Preen. You can read it free online here:
https://archive.org/details/thecompletedx7

That's probably more than enough. Welcome to the rabbit hole. It goes on forever.