Tags: posts polarity-music AI Bitwig Mixing Vector XY-Instrument Sound-Design

Evolving Sounds with the XY Instrument in Bitwig Studio

Tutorial | Oct 16, 2023

In this video, I share a useful trick in Bitwig Studio for creating evolving sounds. I remind myself to use the XY Instrument container which allows me to load multiple instruments and fade between them. This technique can be applied to various types of sounds and offers a lot of flexibility in terms of modulating and manipulating the fades.

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Questions & Answers

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

What is the trick in Bitwig Studio for creating evolving sounds?

The trick in Bitwig Studio for creating evolving sounds is to use the XY Instrument container, where multiple instruments can be loaded and faded between. This allows for the creation of complex layered sounds and the ability to modulate the fading between these sounds.

How can the XY Instrument container be used to fade between instruments and control reverbs?

The XY Instrument container can be used to fade between multiple instruments simultaneously, allowing for the creation of evolving and dynamic sounds. Additionally, reverbs can be included on these instruments, and by fading between them, the reverb can be completely removed or choked as desired.

Are there alternative methods in Bitwig Studio for fading between instruments?

Yes, there are alternative methods in Bitwig Studio for fading between instruments. One alternative is using the Vector4 modulator, which can be used to fade between instrument tracks individually. The fading curves can be adjusted, providing different fade settings between the tracks.

How can the Audio Receiver and Parsec 8 devices be used to fade between different sounds?

The Audio Receiver and Parsec 8 devices can be used to fade between different sounds by switching the outputs of the individual sounds to "no output" and using the chain device with the Audio Receiver to bring in the desired sounds. By using modulators, such as the Parsec 8, different sounds can be rhythmically faded between and modulated.


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.

[00:00:00] So here's a nice trick in Bitwig Studio, how to create nice evolving sounds.
[00:00:05] And I should have used that more lately or in the recent times, but I always forget about
[00:00:11] it.
[00:00:12] So this is a reminder also for myself to use actually this container called XY Instrument,
[00:00:17] where you can load in multiple instruments here, playing sounds for instance here.
[00:00:23] Let's take some pad sounds here, something like this, and then in the second box here
[00:00:33] you put maybe some kind of pad sound.
[00:00:42] Then you can fade between this one and this one, right?
[00:00:48] So let's go to A here, put another polysphere drone in there, maybe this one, and here another
[00:01:01] one.
[00:01:07] Let's go to this one and try it out.
[00:01:23] So the cool thing about this is that you can fade between all of these sources here at
[00:01:29] the same time.
[00:01:30] You can find sweet spot in the middle, you can also modulate this, so constantly fade
[00:01:34] between all of these sounds.
[00:01:36] But the cool thing is that you also can include here reverbs, right?
[00:01:40] If you have a big reverb on this pad sound and you fade here completely to the other
[00:01:45] sound, this reverb completely fades away.
[00:01:48] There's no tail or whatever.
[00:01:50] You can completely fade between these sounds and even choke some of the reverbs, right?
[00:01:55] Which is really nice to have sometimes, right?
[00:01:59] You can completely remove all the reverbs from all the other sources here.
[00:02:06] If you don't like it, you can use a reverb on the post-avix, right?
[00:02:17] So they have more like a smooth transition.
[00:02:22] You can hear the reverb tail from this source still here in B, because we have a reverb,
[00:02:29] of course, on the post.
[00:02:38] If you don't like this setup, we can also do stuff like put this here on different tracks.
[00:02:47] D maybe on this one.
[00:02:56] Instead of using this XY thing, right?
[00:02:59] We can, let's go to the mixer here.
[00:03:02] We can go to the mixer and say on the project panel, we insert here and Vector4 modulator
[00:03:13] and then these things here to these mixing faders.
[00:03:19] Or actually, let's go to zero here.
[00:03:22] Like this.
[00:03:24] And then do the same thing with instrument tracks instead of with the container.
[00:03:34] Let's go to one here.
[00:03:37] One.
[00:03:38] One.
[00:03:39] So now we have to arm your alt tracks.
[00:03:52] Then you can do stuff like this, which is maybe what you want if you go on the middle,
[00:04:00] right?
[00:04:01] You can see we have all tracks at the same loudness.
[00:04:05] So what you can do here, you can also change here this to maybe logarithmic.
[00:04:10] Tests a different fading curve.
[00:04:18] You can see where I end up on a different position, kind of in the middle.
[00:04:25] Yeah, and kind of these fading speed settings are a bit different here with the logarithmic
[00:04:29] setting.
[00:04:30] So this is something you can do.
[00:04:34] There's also a possibility to exchange this here for Vector8.
[00:04:41] If you want to want to use eight sources or eight tracks and morph between or fade between
[00:04:47] them.
[00:04:48] And you can also use some of my presets I made two years ago.
[00:04:54] It's yeah, it's a long time ago made us and it's called let's go for fader here.
[00:05:03] There's an instrument fader and there's a FX fader.
[00:05:07] So they all work kind of the same in the same way.
[00:05:11] So instrument fader looks like this.
[00:05:13] You open up your FX box and you have multiple instrument layers.
[00:05:17] You can put in here on layer one, right?
[00:05:20] You can use this preset on this one here.
[00:05:25] Can go to layer two and put this put this in there.
[00:05:31] This one also layer three.
[00:05:37] The last one on layer four.
[00:05:42] So now here can delete this.
[00:05:49] Here you can fade as you can see between these layers with this with one knob basically.
[00:05:54] It's a linear fade.
[00:05:55] So it can't fade from here to here, right?
[00:05:59] You always have to go through these steps, but sometimes you need exactly that.
[00:06:22] And it's it goes up to eight layers here.
[00:06:25] And what I do basically is I kind of misuse here the split module in bitx studio where
[00:06:34] you fade between these sources here, use a value of one as input, maybe you could choose
[00:06:38] here and it's actually using the volume and then using these modular outs, modulating
[00:06:45] here the loudness of each of these layers.
[00:06:49] And I'm using here also a logarithmic.
[00:06:51] So you have this kind of special fade.
[00:06:53] You can also switch this here to linear.
[00:06:55] If you want to or exponential, if you want to have different curves or different fade
[00:07:00] settings here between these layers.
[00:07:02] So this is also available for free.
[00:07:05] I put the link in the description also to the YouTube video from two years ago where
[00:07:09] I describe how this works.
[00:07:12] There's also an FX version of that.
[00:07:15] And it's probably also useful not only for pads and these lead sounds.
[00:07:21] This is also useful for bass sounds, maybe sometimes.
[00:07:24] So you have multiple midrange bass sounds and some kind of drum based tune and you want
[00:07:30] to quickly fade between different patterns, different sounds.
[00:07:33] Then this is really nice to use.
[00:07:37] This is one way of doing it.
[00:07:39] And there are multiple ways in BitWix Studio to do this.
[00:07:42] What you also can do is you can use a GAN here.
[00:07:47] Let's put this out.
[00:07:50] You can also use an audio receiver for that.
[00:07:57] Which also has a different flow to it.
[00:08:04] So here we have basically four pad sounds.
[00:08:09] They all play their own sound.
[00:08:13] But here we switch all these to no output.
[00:08:19] No output.
[00:08:22] No output.
[00:08:25] So now you can't hear anything.
[00:08:28] And on this instrument track here we use a chain device.
[00:08:35] And in here we use audio receivers.
[00:08:40] Actually this one and we bring in here the first post.
[00:08:47] Bring this down to zero.
[00:08:49] Then here the second one post.
[00:08:53] This one.
[00:08:56] Also the last one here.
[00:08:58] And now we can fade in different tracks.
[00:09:05] One of these sources here.
[00:09:07] But you can also apply just here a parsec 8.
[00:09:12] And say we have eight steps.
[00:09:15] We have four steps here.
[00:09:16] And each of these steps modulates one of these sources.
[00:09:23] Bring this in and the last one here.
[00:09:29] And then you can kind of modulate this right.
[00:09:36] We switch between different input source sounds here.
[00:09:40] And you can bring up here the smoothness.
[00:09:43] So you slowly fade between these.
[00:09:47] You can bring in something like different rhythm to it.
[00:09:57] You can also go for say five steps.
[00:10:06] And modulate here with the fifth step you modulate something here in between something
[00:10:10] like this.
[00:10:13] There's a different rhythm to it.
[00:10:18] Then you can maybe put your delay or some different reburbs or I don't know at the end
[00:10:25] here to kind of glue these sounds a bit together.
[00:10:36] And like I said before, this is also nice for bass sounds or switching up between bass
[00:10:51] sounds, lead sounds and maybe some pad sounds.
[00:10:54] And then you kind of choke all these sounds.
[00:10:57] It's like an I think they call it a pocket machine, something like that.
[00:11:03] So you can switch between different sources and also choke all the reverb effects at the
[00:11:07] same time and then use here some modulators to rhythmically fade between these sources.
[00:11:14] It's really powerful also using these XY instrumental containers and the back to aid and use here
[00:11:23] like I said in the beginning use that to fade in different sources or instrument tracks
[00:11:30] with the modulator, the global modulator.
[00:11:32] So it's a very powerful technique.
[00:11:35] It's probably not called vector synthesis, even though it's kind of the same thing.
[00:11:41] But here you don't fade between oscillators, you fade between real instruments with also
[00:11:48] effects on it.
[00:11:49] So it's not really vector synthesis, even though it's kind of the same thing.
[00:11:53] So that's it.
[00:11:54] I want to show you basically this to remind you that it's a very powerful technique also
[00:11:58] for myself to remind myself to use it more in the future.
[00:12:03] And yeah, that's it for this video.
[00:12:06] Thanks for watching.
[00:12:07] Leave a like if you liked the video, subscribe to the channel and I'll see you probably tomorrow.
[00:12:12] Bye.
[00:12:12] [BLANK_AUDIO]