does anyone know if the filter in NI Massive can reach self-oscillation? I'm thinking about purchasing it but would just like to find this out beforehand. I can't really find any info on this elsewhere. Cheers, Oli.

2 Answers 2


Self-oscilation only works for analogue gear (because of the noise flow and constant active OSCs). Digital plug-ins can't self oscillate. But some programmers made algorithms that "imitate" self-oscillation to a certain degree. In NI Massive you can "imitate" self-osculation if you feed a bit to noise from the noise generator into the filter with a cranked resonance. Then after the self-osculation like sound starts you can remove the noise and the self-oscillation will feed itself.

Massive has a feedback function so you can feed back the output of the filter into the input and thus you can generate another self-osicillation like sound.

But if you want a real self-oscillating filter, you need to go analogue.

I hope I could answer you question.

  • Ah cool thanks. Yeah, I was just seeing If it could imitate. Ive had se pretty gold results from VSTi's. Once again, thanks.
    – Perceptic
    Commented Mar 6, 2014 at 10:19
  • Why would digital filter be unable to self-oscillate? Even an off-the-shelf biquad IIR can self-oscillate given suitable parameters – only that's normally prevented by the control interface, because with the oscillation will become louder without limit, which makes in unusable musically. But a digital filter with nonlinearities can self-oscillate in much the same, limited way as an analogue filter would. Self-oscillation has nothing to do with internal noise-floor. Commented Aug 11, 2014 at 19:46
  • If there is no signal to boost it can't resonate. So on a real digital synth you won't be able to self oscillate until you feed a small amount of noise into the filter. For en example -> Open up Massive use a 4 pole lp filter crank reso to max and you won't hear anything. On digital synths that model analogue synth you might get self oscillation ofc. But on a normal digital synth you won't. Commented Aug 11, 2014 at 22:41
  • Until you feed a small amount of anything into the filter; this can also be a note you play through the oscillators, or merely an anti-denormal offset. Again, the reason you won't hear anything when cranking up the reso on a normal digital synth is simply that it won't allow you to crank it up beyond the critical point, because self-oscillation would be catastrophic. (In a dB scale the critical point is at +∞, but that does not correspond to infinite parameters of the underlying filter implementation.) Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 16:23
  • So do you mean that self oscillating digital filters would create an endless in volume increasing sound if not preserved by design? How come? Commented Aug 13, 2014 at 22:51

This isn't entirely true. Soundtoys have a filter that can self oscillate. Check it out. It's one of the best filter vsts available.

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