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Voice Deck Modulation to Create Rich Soundscapes

Tutorial | Aug 12, 2022

In this video, I showed how to use voice decks on monophonic grids and create different settings for each voice deck. This can be used to create chords, delays, chorus and reverb effects. I also showed how to use multiple random modulators and panning settings to create a lush sounding effect. Finally, I demonstrated how to use a channel filter to create a bass line, as well as how to use a step modulator to create a longer and more interesting melody.

You can watch the Video on Youtube - support me on Patreon

Questions & Answers

Maybe you dont watch the video, here are some important takeaways:

What is voice decking?

Voice decking is a way of using multiple voices in a polyphonic patch or grid. It allows you to create multiple layers of sound with different settings, parameters, or effects. You can also use voice decking to create chords, melodies, or even reverb or delay effects.

What is an FX grid?

An FX grid is a type of audio effect that can be used to create a wide range of sounds. It consists of a number of audio effects that are connected together in a grid-like pattern. The individual effects can be routed to different output channels and can be modified and automated with a variety of modulation sources.

How can voice decking be used to create a chorus or stereo spreading effect?

Voice decking can be used to create a chorus or stereo spreading effect by running the same effect patch in parallel multiple times, and changing the settings for each voice deck. For example, you can use the voice deck modulator to alter the delay time and modulation speed for each voice deck, as well as the panning settings. This will create a lush, stereo effect which can be further


This is what im talking about in this video. The text is transcribed by AI, so it might not be perfect. If you find any mistakes, please let me know.
You can also click on the timestamps to jump to the right part of the video, which should be helpful.

[00:00.000] So I showed you my last or my recent video how to use voice decks actually on monophonic grids and what you can do with it
[00:07.220] So I want to add something to this video because there's more you can do of course
[00:12.360] So here in this example, we have just one track on this track as a Polysynth with just a super simple patch
[00:18.080] I actually can remove this here. It's not needed and the note grid outputting here some pitch signals and some gate signal
[00:25.500] So it's just playing a melody. So super simple, right? It's just my usual trigger
[00:34.520] I go with the phase signal into a sine mode to fuck the signal up basically scale it down with the attenuate and use a sample and hold
[00:42.000] Sample and hold is all sampling every time you trigger here and then we go into transpose, transposes up from C to D sharp
[00:51.000] And then use a D sharp minor scale and then output the notes here and also there's here and transport playing module
[01:00.280] stopping basically these triggers from passing through the output every time we hit stop on the transports when I play here this place
[01:10.120] When I stop it stops. So that's the whole simple patch of that
[01:14.600] So now this criteria is basically a monophonic patch as before and the voice decking is off
[01:20.960] So what we can do now is duplicating this patch here three times by increasing the voice decks to three
[01:26.400] so now this patch basically runs three times in parallel and
[01:31.080] In fact outputting three notes here already, but you can emphasize this a bit by using a voice deck
[01:37.680] But this time instead of using the global modulator output, we can use the individual modulator outputs
[01:45.680] We can say voice deck one is doing something voice deck two is doing something different and so on
[01:51.640] So we can say voice deck two is actually alterating it transpose by maybe
[01:57.520] three and voice deck three is changing to transpose by maybe going to minus five
[02:03.440] Something like this, right? So we change the transpose here before it goes into pitch quantize and the pitch quantize
[02:10.120] Then changes all these notes to the right
[02:12.920] Note so to be in the scale. So now it sounds like already some chords or chord generator
[02:27.840] Then you can say well, I maybe don't want to have
[02:31.120] This type of chord. I want to maybe have a different rhythm for the second voice deck, which is the plus three
[02:39.640] Transpose voice you can go up to the triggers and say I want to have a different trigger rhythm for this
[02:45.760] So maybe plus once we have six beats
[02:49.080] Quantize to a 16 note grid
[02:51.080] So it sounds a bit better or maybe a bit more rhythmically and on the Polysynth itself
[03:04.080] You can now introduce here a channel 16 just to see what's going on
[03:09.240] So you can see when I play
[03:11.800] You have only one channel
[03:13.800] So with the voice deck modulator, you can also say voice two which is the voice which is plus three
[03:21.760] Semi tones here. You won't play this on channel two. So you increase here the channel by one
[03:28.640] Now you can see we have channel two active here
[03:31.000] Channel three or voice deck three is on channel three. So increase this by two
[03:43.720] Okay, so now we create basically chords from just one self running monophonic patch
[03:49.400] outputting multiple notes with different pitches and all of these notes on different MIDI channels
[03:54.480] But just one patch and this is pretty simple patch. So you don't need to clone or duplicate basically this
[04:02.760] Note out module here to create multiple note outputs
[04:05.760] You just can use voice tagging and use voice tag modulator to alter rate or to change settings on each voice deck
[04:12.960] It's just pretty awesome pretty easy to do
[04:15.880] So this is the first idea for that. So you can use here the multiple outputs
[04:20.600] The multiple modulator outputs of the voice deck to target each voice
[04:25.640] Individually and say exactly what you want to have different on these voice decks. We can say voice deck two is
[04:33.680] different in pitch different in rhythm and is different as a different
[04:39.040] MIDI channel or note channel
[04:41.040] So it can be much more specific than just using the more global modulator output here and using these different modes here and then
[04:49.040] Use distribution basically of these modes
[04:53.200] Okay, so this is the first idea and then we have here the police and of course
[04:58.120] getting at the notes, but maybe for that later on more and
[05:02.080] Let's go here to the effect section because you can also use voice tagging on FX grids
[05:07.880] Which is pretty awesome and I'll show you why now we have here an audio signal going in
[05:13.680] Which is the police and output here and audio going out. So nothing happens
[05:20.000] Okay, so we can introduce your delay long delay and the long delay doesn't have any feedback setting
[05:27.800] so
[05:30.280] Yeah, you can basically just delay a signal or offset and signals when I play this just it's
[05:35.960] Sounds exactly like before just offset by
[05:38.800] 160 note here, I think yes 160 note and
[05:45.160] When you bring in the tricycler you can hear that it's offset
[05:52.120] But there's no feedback there's no
[05:55.160] Yeah build a feedback building up. So that's what I want to say. So now you can use voice stacking
[06:01.280] I increase this by five. So now we have this FX grid here running in parallel five times
[06:06.400] And we can use the voice deck modulator to say what's different on each voice deck. So we say plus
[06:14.600] Zero to plus one and we add from one to eight. So now we distribute five
[06:21.760] Different patches here and each of these voice decks has a different setting
[06:26.200] What's like one has is one 16 note offset voice two is maybe two
[06:31.140] 16 note offset, right and then you combine all these together and then you have like something like this
[06:46.260] Okay, so now you have basically created a small little delay with multiple delay tabs kind of and
[06:52.420] Now we can go further and get say
[06:56.140] Let's do a local low pass here
[06:58.140] Open this all the way up put it to six and say I want to have
[07:04.980] Maybe
[07:06.740] voice deck three here, which is probably a three 16 beats delay and pull this down
[07:11.860] So I want to have one tap a different low pass
[07:17.580] Or maybe it's this here actually the same. Yeah, it's the same
[07:21.060] So one of these delay tabs is basically low-passed we can target individual audio effect layers or
[07:35.580] FX grid layers or voice decks with this modulator here and with these
[07:40.460] Yeah modulator outputs individual voice deck modulator outputs
[07:45.620] Okay
[07:46.820] So now that we have this small little nice delay here, maybe I bring this in a bit with a tricycle
[07:54.660] Let's call this delay
[07:57.500] So this is a nice idea you could use
[08:00.980] Also interesting FX grid, of course is maybe you just choose a normal delay like this
[08:07.660] All right, just make zero delay here use a voice deck modulator
[08:17.060] Zero to plus one increase this to fives we have this this patch five times in parallel and say we want to increase here the
[08:28.260] Delay times for each voice deck differently. So we have now the audio signal delayed five times differently and in parallel
[08:36.700] So this gives now some kind of chorus effect and you probably want to tune down at the volume a bit
[08:57.140] Okay, that's that's nice we can also use a panning setting we pan the signal here and use a voice deck modulator
[09:04.540] And this time we use to the setting minus one to plus one so we only modulate us here in a positive range to 100%
[09:13.900] Because it's a bipolar modulation
[09:16.220] You can see voice deck one goes to minus one which is on the left side voice deck two goes slightly to the left which is probably here
[09:24.580] Three is in the middle for a slightly right and five is all the way to the right three and this basically
[09:31.460] nice and evenly
[09:33.460] So this is how it sounds
[09:36.300] It's almost like unison audio unison
[09:48.180] So now that we have this
[09:50.180] You can see we have here a zero two plus one
[09:53.460] So maybe we want to change delay settings here on each voice differently
[09:57.140] So you can set this to manual we have these sliders now
[10:00.980] We can change a modulator what modulation strength goes to which voice deck
[10:06.580] so we can do
[10:08.580] Random mod here. Maybe put this to smoothing all the way up free. So we don't have any
[10:15.300] retriggers happening and
[10:17.420] Maybe polyphonic. It's not needed because FX grids are usually not polyphonic and maybe put this to hertz. We are not
[10:26.980] constrained to some kind of beat
[10:28.980] Synchronization so now we have this nice little modulation happening here and we have in fact five voices
[10:35.660] So we need five modulators here because I want to have a different modulation different random modulation for each voice deck
[10:43.380] Now we use the first one here
[10:47.220] Second one
[10:52.860] This one and this one
[10:56.580] You can see because we are using multiple random modulators. You have different seeds and we have also always
[11:04.260] Different combinations of values here. Well, this also goes in the negative range. Why?
[11:11.460] Why is that?
[11:15.620] Anyway
[11:17.620] Looks like it works
[11:19.620] So now we basically change the delay times which should be sound a bit more
[11:23.780] Yeah, let's see
[11:29.780] That's maybe too much
[11:43.780] So each voice
[11:45.780] Each
[11:47.780] Each
[11:49.780] FX patch here that's running in parallel
[11:51.780] running in parallel gets a different delay setting for each voice deck
[11:56.740] And it's also modulated differently in the amount and also gets a different panning
[12:02.100] So it's a very nice chorus or stereo spreading effect. You can create with the FX grid pretty easily and pretty fast
[12:10.180] This is dry
[12:25.060] So it's it's very wide very wide and
[12:29.540] Yeah, very pleasant
[12:31.780] Um, okay, so this is an idea you can do
[12:35.140] Chorus stereo. I don't know if it's chorus, but it sounds like one
[12:42.580] Okay, so we have delay chorus and let's create some kind of reverb but because this is also interesting
[12:49.140] So here we have the same thing all the in all the out so nothing happens
[12:52.820] So we use a split to have actually left and right channel separate
[12:57.540] and also merge
[12:59.540] And to guess that we're using all pass devices here
[13:05.140] Maybe also here the left and the right separately and maybe used to why not
[13:13.140] Then we introduce you also a delay to have some slightly
[13:19.140] Uh pitch mod in there and what else could we do maybe
[13:26.260] um
[13:28.260] panning panning we don't actually need because we probably
[13:32.660] Use different delay times for left and right channel
[13:35.860] Maybe that it's that's it for now or
[13:38.740] We use a random mod. That's that's good
[13:41.460] Random hertz don't retrigger. So we have don't have parameter jumps in there smoothing all the way up
[13:47.860] And slight modulation here
[13:49.860] Let's see
[14:05.060] Okay, so now we can use voice decks here
[14:08.980] Maybe volume to turn the volume down here a bit
[14:12.500] So now we can voice decks five voice decks and we have this thing already running now five times in parallel
[14:18.340] And we use a voice deck modulator to change settings on these things
[14:23.700] so
[14:25.540] The first voice here
[14:28.580] The first voice is actually how it is. We just leave it at that
[14:32.260] The second one here gets different delay or actually let me dial in a different setting for left and right a bit
[14:38.740] So gets a slight stereo effect already. So voice two has some alterations to it. So we change for first year the
[14:45.780] Modulation setting just a bit. So we modulate the delay differently in a different speed than voice deck one
[14:53.460] Just slightly and also dial in your different delay settings. So maybe we go up to 150 around 150
[15:03.700] And also here maybe
[15:05.700] 200 voice deck three also gets different delay settings
[15:17.220] And this leads to nice lush reverb. So I think 100 here
[15:28.500] Yeah around 500 and the last one
[15:33.060] Let's go to seven
[15:37.540] Maybe it's too much, but I want to try it
[15:42.500] 600
[15:46.260] Let's go to six
[15:48.260] Different delay times different modulation settings. Okay. So now that we have this let's try
[16:06.020] So it's a nice little reverb
[16:08.260] And it's actually pretty simple
[16:09.940] But because of using the voice decks and running this in parallel with all kinds of different modulation settings in
[16:16.340] Timing settings you get this rich effect
[16:25.460] And you can do even more you can say you want to have a low pass and a high pass in there
[16:29.460] And then just use different settings for each of these low pass and high passes
[16:33.460] For each voice deck, which is pretty nice. Okay, so another trick is you call this your reverb
[16:53.620] To put this all into an instrument track, right? So we have here one polysynth with the whole effect chain
[16:58.660] We just created here and we want to use here an channel filter
[17:05.300] And say I want to only play this polysynth channel one two and three
[17:11.060] And four is the bass now. So we use a different channel filter here
[17:17.700] Channel filter and use five here. So here we want to play a bass. So we'll use a phase four
[17:23.140] The sine probably and we create in here another voice deck four
[17:30.180] So we play another voice here and you say with four we want to have a bass note. So
[17:36.500] maybe
[17:38.260] Go down here by 24 semitones, which is two octaves lower
[17:43.300] Um, it's 24. Bam. And then we use here, um, channel five, which is four here
[17:54.980] Rotate this by four. So we output this bass note basically on channel five
[17:59.220] So we go on this track then or on this instrument
[18:02.580] Let's try this
[18:04.580] Okay, maybe change at the rhythm
[18:15.140] So it's a steady pulse because it's four now and because the bass note is pretty short we can use a latch
[18:21.700] Make it even lower
[18:40.420] We can hear it better
[18:42.420] Okay, so it's basic bass patch and now we can use here a repeater
[18:52.420] And a quantizer and we can just use a step mod on this on this repeater here to dial in different repeating settings
[19:01.380] Like this, why is this one on here?
[19:32.340] And now when you play around basically with this with these settings here without
[19:47.300] These modulations applied, right? So it's just an offset
[19:52.660] These all these modulations we dialed in is basically just an offset
[19:56.020] So you can go to your initial patch and tweak it and all these offsets are still in place and they often affect to it
[20:04.100] So it's a pretty interesting way of finding some sweet spots in there
[20:09.140] So you can see when I play around your everything changes
[20:11.860] This is the note range here
[20:41.860] Okay, let's do the kick here just to have some kind of rhythm to hear how this sounds
[21:41.860] And get low pass on this one here
[22:11.860] Maybe we'll randomize here
[22:22.660] And we need the notes we need to hold
[22:53.540] Maybe a high pass here on this one
[23:09.460] Maybe in front of the reverb this one here
[23:30.820] Okay, so maybe you can use a step mod here to change the melody actually
[23:34.900] In certain aspects, so for instance, there's a melody in a time frame of one bar and it repeats over and over
[23:42.900] So we want to change the melody and maybe every four bars slightly
[23:47.700] So we use here a step mod as you can see it progresses pretty slowly
[23:51.700] And here we want to change the melody just that
[24:06.500] And this is how we basically change this patch here to make the melody a bit longer
[24:23.300] or the sequence of the melody a bit longer and a bit more interesting
[24:27.300] Maybe bring in a bit of groove here and also enable shuffle here on the grid itself
[24:40.100] And I think I have also here a quantizer somewhere
[24:44.100] This quantizer is also active there, okay
[24:58.900] Nice
[25:04.900] So this is basically how we can create rich sounds or rich interesting textures and melodies with a bit of modulation and a bit of note grid and using voice tags and so on
[25:17.700] So this is what I want to show you basically in this video
[25:21.700] I hope you get a bit inspired by that and try it out for yourself
[25:27.700] It's pretty powerful actually
[25:31.700] Maybe use an e-hat here
[25:42.500] Maybe use an arpeggiator for that
[25:46.500] Just one note
[26:00.500] Expressions, velocity and where the velocity is the highest we want to have a long decay
[26:30.500] Oh we can also use here maybe modulation for that
[27:00.500] Okay I think that's it
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[27:30.900] That's it for this video, thanks for watching and bye