Synthesizer "Sweetspots"

Elric

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Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« on: June 20, 2023, 01:39:28 AM »
I'd love to hear a Trigon6 demo that explored *only* the "Center section" of the synth.  ...the oscs and amp and filter.

(I mostly don't use /don't like the distortion/feedback on my Pro3. And, I'm not interested in the effects. I want to hear the pure tone.)

Think someone posted this before, this review has what you're after

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7W-PNp_K-Q

Yep!  I watched every Trigon demo I could find!
And yea, that's okay...

I could go on forever but...  (And, of course, it's all just taste.)

I think the Trigon has only about a 10% sweetspot. - Where the Prophet-5/10 has an 80-90% sweetspot range.
(And my Pro3, that I love, has maybe a 40% sweetspot?)

- Here's my favorite Trigon demo. - And it still is only, maybe, half stuff that I like.  And I still wouldn't buy it.
 (esp. at 18:12 - Now THAT is a cool tone! - Though, simple. I like simple.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQEbTHFRLJE


« Last Edit: June 20, 2023, 01:54:33 AM by Elric »
:Elric:
Kurzweil K, Pro3, TX81z, K1r, Triton w/MOSS, Wavestation EX in a bag in the corner.

Re: Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2023, 05:32:42 AM »
I'd love to hear a Trigon6 demo that explored *only* the "Center section" of the synth.  ...the oscs and amp and filter.

(I mostly don't use /don't like the distortion/feedback on my Pro3. And, I'm not interested in the effects. I want to hear the pure tone.)

Think someone posted this before, this review has what you're after

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7W-PNp_K-Q

Yep!  I watched every Trigon demo I could find!
And yea, that's okay...

I could go on forever but...  (And, of course, it's all just taste.)

I think the Trigon has only about a 10% sweetspot. - Where the Prophet-5/10 has an 80-90% sweetspot range.
(And my Pro3, that I love, has maybe a 40% sweetspot?)

- Here's my favorite Trigon demo. - And it still is only, maybe, half stuff that I like.  And I still wouldn't buy it.
 (esp. at 18:12 - Now THAT is a cool tone! - Though, simple. I like simple.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQEbTHFRLJE

I have to admit I never understood the whole ‘sweet spot’ thing. I guess if you’re playing a synth in isolation it  makes some sense, if you want to press a key and it makes you go “oooohh”, but to me that’s a tiny factor. Just my view of course, everyone has differing needs and wonts! I tend to go with how “inspiring” a synth is.. I am pretty sure I would really dig the Trigon. I better not try it as there’s no way I can afford it right now :)

Just listening to the demos etc I think it sounds great! Lots and lots of use there I think

Elric

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Re: Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2023, 09:04:36 AM »
Re: "sweetspot"

I would say that a sweetspot is just "the spot where the dial/settings/patch sounds really good".

-- The percentages I threw out earlier were just in reference to how often you/I can find a great sound on a particular synth.

On a Prophet 5/10, there are great sounds with almost anything you try. - On my Kawai K1r, it takes a while to find a cool tone. There are some great tones! But it takes more time and tweaking to find them.

Prophet 5/10 = sweetspots found 80-90 percent of the time. (easy to find).
Kawai K1 = "sweetspots" found 5-10 percent of the time (hard to find).

« Last Edit: June 20, 2023, 09:07:07 AM by Elric »
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chysn

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Re: Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2023, 09:39:03 AM »
I wonder if the "sweetspot" ratio is inversely proportional to the number of parameters. Prophet 5 really distills synthesis to its essentials, allowing you to dial up anything in Welsh's Synthesizer Cookbook. Less sweetspot probably translates to greater sound design range, and isn't at all a weakness, nor a reason to purchase one synth over another.

It is really easy to get a Prophet 5 to sound good. I've found that the challenge is actually to reign it in for multi-part compositions. If the Trigon's oscillators are anything like the Prophet's, I can't imagine ever needing three of them!
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Elric

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Re: Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2023, 09:55:46 AM »
I wonder if the "sweetspot" ratio is inversely proportional to the number of parameters.

I would not agree with that.
My Pro3 has lots of extra parameters, but still has a relatively high "sweetspot" ratio!*  And I want more control!
I know Dave liked the "limited functionality" approach. Which I get, but, I vehemently disagree!

I said earlier somewhere. --  A Prophet 5/10 with the Pro3 style ModMatrix and extra LFOs and Envs would be insane!
But(!) you can't dumb down the oscs and circuitry to get there! (Though the cost would be high.)

*I often use only 1 oscillator to make a patch, and laugh when I check back on "this awesome patch" I'm working on, and find that it's just 1 oscillator. --  I know that might sound like simplicity, but it's not! I'm usually doing complex (modmatrix) stuff, but the quality of that analog osc is punching through!
:Elric:
Kurzweil K, Pro3, TX81z, K1r, Triton w/MOSS, Wavestation EX in a bag in the corner.

Re: Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2023, 02:44:59 AM »

It is really easy to get a Prophet 5 to sound good. I've found that the challenge is actually to reign it in for multi-part compositions.

I think this is my main point too. Getting a synth to “sound good” (whatever that means) on its own is something very different to a synth part working beautifully in a track.

In regards what a “sweet spot” actually means, I’m not sure I get that either. Is it simply just a “good sound” from a synth? Or is it something to do with how you balance the filter and resonance for example? Never really made sense to me! I guess it’s so subjective.. there are so many sounds a synth can make, and some are right for some contexts and not others, depending on what you are doing

LPF83

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Re: Synthesizer "Sweetspots"
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2023, 04:17:41 AM »

It is really easy to get a Prophet 5 to sound good. I've found that the challenge is actually to reign it in for multi-part compositions.

I think this is my main point too. Getting a synth to “sound good” (whatever that means) on its own is something very different to a synth part working beautifully in a track.

In regards what a “sweet spot” actually means, I’m not sure I get that either. Is it simply just a “good sound” from a synth? Or is it something to do with how you balance the filter and resonance for example? Never really made sense to me! I guess it’s so subjective.. there are so many sounds a synth can make, and some are right for some contexts and not others, depending on what you are doing

There are probably mutliple rabbit holes I could go down with this topic that would rope in concepts such as variance depending on what genre of track I feel like creating on a given day, etc. but I will try to keep my ideas reasonably succinct....

... my workflow usually begins with one synth that acts as the "idea springboard" for everything else.  It's usually not a bass synth (although sometimes can be)... it's usually a poly synth where I can experiment with chords, though it may end up getting played monophonically.

That "first-in" or "idea" synth is critically important from an inspiration standpoint because it tends to define the direction for how the rest of the track develops.  Ironically, that synth may not even be used in the same way later in the track (the MIDI I created with the "idea" synth might end up being sent to and tracked from a different instrument).

For that initial process, having a synth with tons of sweetspots is crucial, because as I'm searching for where to go next, I might rapidly tweak knobs in order to achieve a vague goal I have in my mind, and I don't want to spend lots of time getting lost in minutia an obsessing over perfecting the qualities a single sound. 

During that process, if I am working with the type of synth where new ideas just fall out of it and auto-magically sound good, it has a significant impact on inspiration, so a "plentiful sweet spot" synth is ideal for this role; this is a very different benefit that I get from the type of synth that is deep / complex, but rewards the time investment spent on it ... that's fun too, I love sound design, but it's a different role for an instrument and a different workflow with regard to track creation.

So to answer your question, in my case yes, a sweet spot on a synth usually means a great sound coming from that synth when I am soloing that instrument -- not same as how it sounds in a mix or plays with other instruments.  Sometimes it's about filter/resonance, but for me it's more about how quickly that synth can be tweaked to go from a broad/vague idea of a sound category to a more refined/focused version of that sound, and still sound good (meaning inspiring, not harsh, whatever) across a wide range of parameter changes as I refine it and narrow down the idea.

Some synths are more tempermental and feel all over the place when tweaked; they have their place but don't typically get a primary role in my workflow.

Prophet 10, OB-X8m, Prophet 6, OB-6, 3rd Wave, Prophet 12m, Prophet Rev2-16, Toraiz AS-1, Pro 2, Korg Polysix, Roland JP-8080, Roland System-8, Virus TI2, Moog SlimPhatty, Hydrasynth desktop, Roland SPD-SX SE / Octapad, Maschine, Cubase/Ableton/Akai MPC