If I am looking to make full-on dubstep, trance, or house music, how good would the INCLUDED Cubase synths be at achieving this purpose? I am not interested in complementing real instruments, I am looking strictly to use ONLY the synths included with Cubase. I realize that I can buy more expensive versions of the synths and samplers included with Cubase, but I am interested in the included synths. I am looking to obtain a full, professional sound.
a good and lowcost option when you only want to stick to the default cubase synths is to give a look at all the libraries that exist as extensions. They are very affordable and i have quite a few of them. They are very much bang for the buck and oriented towards specific musical styles.
They all work with the standard vsti’s included in the default cubase setup.
Besides the vsti’s there are also loopsets. They complement the above, but it would be a good idea to use them in a sampler and set everything accordingly.
Thanks for the info.
btw, my personal opinion on the synths as delivered with the package (for tecno and the styles you mentioned)
The halion SE4 is intended as an allround bread and butter synth. You have relativly little control over the content, unless you expand the instruments. The recent version has now also trip which is nice for arpegiated stuff.
Retrologue is a enhance copy of an analog emulation. Quite a good engine.
Padshop is fantastic. You really need to do the pro upgrade which is something of 10 euro or so. THen you can load you own samples in it.
Groove agent 4se is fantastic, but complex. Functionwise this is all you need for drums, but you can use it as a sampler/loop player too.
Loopmash is not my kind of gear. It mashing up loops. But ok, since you are tecno minded, you will probably like it.
You can also install some of the older vsti’s that are on the install disk too…
What you do not have installed with the standard install is a broad spectrum of the more classical sounds like strings, piano’s, orchestral, … But these are available as add ons.
Can you go tecno with this install ? Sure, and quite well too.
Will you have a mindblowing unique sound ? No. It’s an install intended for as broad as possible audience i guess.
Once you got yourself a DAW, f.e. cubase, the try some of these out: Sylenth from Lennardigital, anything from UHE, … You 'll hear the difference very quickly. But… you need a powerfull machine if you want a powerfull sound…
Thanks for the help guys. I’ve been using Cubase for a couple of years now, but I never ventured into the techno/dubstep etc genre. However, after hanging out with some people who produce that type of music, I decided to give it a shot. Today I worked on a dubstep song with the included synths, and I guess I answered my own question. Since the song sounds somewhat professional, I suppose the included synths are up to par. I don’t have the money for any of the more expensive synths like Sylenth or Massive, but I think Retrologue delivered a nice sound that doesn’t warrant my immediate upgrade to a more expensive option.
You should also check out the listings on KVR
They include everything from free plugs, to dirt cheap or bank-breaking expensive
I think the bundled synths are generally overlooked and underrated. I’ve used the included HALion Sonic, Groove Agent, and Retrologue plenty. I’ve personally not found a use for Padshop or Loopmash, but I know some folks really dig them.
The OP asked specifically about Dubstep, Trance or House with the bundled instruments. For Trance or House, yes Cubase totally has those genres covered for both drums and instruments. But Cubase doesn’t come with any wavetable or additive/FM type synths, which are commonly used for more modern “techy” sounds. Some other synths like Massive, Serum, FM8, or Rob Papen Blue might be a good complement to what Cubase delivers for convincing modern electronic music outside the realms of Trance and House.
They’re actually very good if you know how. For example check out this tutorial:
Yes, but it just doesn’t seem to live up to the sound of bass wobbles in this:
The differences in the richness of the sound is hardly comparable. The quality of the first tutorial with Steinberg was only passable at best, and the second tutorial was miserable to even watch. I don’t mean to be harsh, I’m just trying to get a very professional sound, and my friends tell me I’m not delivering. I’m trying to make music with rich dubstep wobbles like in this song. Any suggestions? Is Retrologue still capable?
Retrologue just isn’t the right tool for the job (none of the bundled synths are). Skrillex is a well-known user of FM synthesis, and none of the Cubase synths do that. (A couple have FM modulation options, but that’s not the same as FM synthesis.) Wavetable synthesis (Massive, Serum) is also a common source of the kind of sounds you’re looking to make, and again, Cubase doesn’t include any of that.
You might find some serviceable patches in HALion Sonic, since it includes samples of other synths (which could potentially be based on technologies that the bundled plugins don’t have), but you might end up doing a lot of preset browsing and tweaking to achieve a sound that’s not as gratifying or quick to program in a third party-synth that’s actually purpose-built for those kinds of sounds.
If you wanne wobble - look at this: http://www.sugar-bytes.com/content/products/Cyclop/index.php?lang=en
This is the sound and functionality many of the wobbling guys are looking for, and the synth is heavily being used in the industry for that kind of sound. It also has a specific soundengine. Not very flexible, but a real harsh sound, and as with everything from sugarbytes, it is controllable in a very flexible way. And ohyeah… it’s a bass synth and it is monophonic. So it does what it does, but few things else.
But it’s a beast if you want wobbles.
But FWIW: wobbling is a programming technique. It’s based on LFO and it’s all about realtime controlling them.
You achieve it f.e. by connnecting several controllers on a sound and 1 LFO:
1 controller for LFO amount
1 controller for LFO speed
1 controller for LFO wave
the LFO can be assigned on either volume or filter.
And let’s give a twist on those controllers !
What sugarbytes has done is combining those 3 controllers in one main controller, and make that controller variable per (certain) values. Very nice, but you can achieve this with every synth if you know how to do it. (automation) So, the main strenght of sugarbytes vsts are their GUI’s.
FWIW: if you are not in to the specific sound of cyclop, an nice option can be also their WOW2 EFX. It has also the wobble generator but can do lots of other things too, and since it is an efx it is engine independent. Don’t expect to master such a peace in a day though. It’s a very combined approach of controllers.
And no, i don’t own shares of the sugarbytes company…
Imho it is indeed usefull for a specific approach in making music, but it’s intelligent and well done.
Major +1 here.
I still have several of the younger users (17/18/19 yo) coming into the studio and spending
hours (and $$) using it while finishing up their vox tracks.
Padshop and now Padshop Pro has been a money maker for me since the 1st week of its release.
I use synths a lot in what I do and I have the ones included in Cubase to be great. However I always make them my own by altering the EQ, using midi inserts or adjusting the other parameters such as reverb, attack, release, chorus mix etc. You can also combine different synth sounds together to make an epic sounding synth Enjoy!