Bass Sound Design: 808s Plucks Growls and Sub Bass

This is the 3rd video in my sound design series which will introduce common bass tones and show you how to create them in any synth.
The synth I use in these tutorials is called Xfer SERUM – I use this because I find that it is one of the easiest to teach with. These synthesis principles can be used with most synths.
If this is too fast for you, be sure to start with my beginner sound design video first –

1) 808
Time – 1:30
Originally from the TR 808 drum machine, we will synthesise it from a basic Sine wave.
This is a common bass used in many genres of music. Originally widespread in hip hop, it has now moved into pop music with full force and you’ll likely hear this sort of bass in the charts and as the exclusive bass sound from any producer with the suffix “lil”.

2) Pluck / House Bass
Time – 6:40
Very common in dance and house music. This pluck bass provides a really solid foundation to the song and is easily heard on smaller monitor systems too!
Use a simple Square, Sine or Saw wave and adjust the filter envelope to give a really solid pluck. Try using a lower octave than I used in the video (Headphones were tricking me with the bass!)

3) Growl Bass
Time – 11:30
A fundamental of many genres including dance and dubstep. This bass is impossible to miss and thanks to its rich harmonic content, it will sound clear even on small phone speakers.
Use a single Saw wave for the bass and a stereo spread of saw waves in a higher octave to make a really wide and professional sounding bass. Be careful with stereo widening effects and check-in mono to make sure the bass sounds as epic in the real world as it does in your studio!

4) Sub
Time – 15:40
A classic. Use a sine wave and play low octaves. Try adding distortion (tube, tape, preamp) to make it cut through on smaller speakers. Sidechain to the kick and it’ll be perfect.

Get all my bass presets here for free, no signup, no purchase or anything like that! Enjoy :)

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