Sound Design Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for sound engineers, producers, editors, and enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I need a really glassy sound, pitching down. A bit like stars in the sky, but it's supposed to be atmos in a strayed love song arrangement.

I know I'm being vague as hell but I've been looking everywhere for an example. I'm pretty sure that radiohead have a song that has just drums, and a similar synth starting (falling from high pitch) at every snare beat.

I know how the parameters of a synth work, I'm just not very creative at arriving to a starting point. Any ideas on how to should I start this as a preset? You can refer to Logic synths, Virus, reason's synths, or any of the arturia synths if it helps.

Thanks in advance

share|improve this question

migrated from Jan 25 '14 at 9:35

This question came from our site for engineers, producers, editors, and enthusiasts spanning the fields of video, and media creation.

up vote 6 down vote accepted

I don't have any of those synths so I can't give you anything exact. (I'm using a Nord Modular, mainly).

Anyway, the sound I get in my head when you say "glassy" would be a sine or triangle wave with either ring of FM modulation to give it some "metallic" overtones. To make the pitch falling you would have to use an envelope to modulate the oscillator frequency.

If you can't assign an envelope like that (not all synths can) you could also get something similar by setting the filter resonance so high that the filter starts oscillating, and having the envelope modulate the filter frequency. This would give you a falling tone, and to make it more glassy you could play a note in a similar high frequency. That would create two tones that would interfere with each other, which may create a glassy effect. But I think the first one is closer to what you want.

share|improve this answer
Lennart! that might work out perfectly! Will give you a shout later on but definitely makes sense! (and I'm jealous of your nord!!!) – jlebre Feb 14 '11 at 18:53
this is still slightly ringy. was trying to smooth it out with LPF but... hmm... definetly the right direction – jlebre Feb 18 '11 at 23:03

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.