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The title of the question isn't very clear but I wasn't sure exactly how to phrase it. Also, if I am im the wrong forum, could someone please redirect me to a more appropriate one?

Recently I've been listening to a lot of EDM and I stumbled across the song Colorblind by Panda Eyes. I'm not an expert in this kind of thing, but it sounds like the main melody of the song is a group of cut off vocals that are repitched to form the correct notes. I may be mistaken and this is not how the song was created at all, but this got me thinking. Is there such a VST that takes a vocal byte and then can pitch it to whatever note is played on, say, a MIDI keyboard? Essentially turning the sound byte into a form of synth.

This is not the same as autotune, where the recording would already exist and the VST used for pitch modulation after the fact.

If anybody knows such a VST, or even the name of this sort of thing, that would be great!

Thanks in advance, Quizzer515SY

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  • Does this mean a sound bite (i.e. a short clip or extract of a sound recording)? A ‘sound byte’ would be a single number from within an audio file.
    – gidds
    Jul 17, 2023 at 17:30
  • Yes, I did mean sound bite. Sorry, I wasn't sure how to spell it Jul 18, 2023 at 15:17

4 Answers 4

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From your description it sounds ;-) to me that what you want to look for is a sampler. Samplers are used to create as example realistic sounds for instruments and then comes with libraries of sounds. Example could be sampled pianos. Some samplers include functions for you to sample your own sound files.

The sampler works by taking the sound you sampled and changing its playback frequency according to the midi pitch you input.

I will not point to specific products here, but I tried a search for "vst sampler" and got some good suggestions.

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  • A sampler would do it, and so would a granular synth. Two options to look at. Another possibility that could have been used in the song in question is a vocoder. Jul 18, 2023 at 1:20
  • Thank you @ghellquist, I think that's what I was looking for! Jul 18, 2023 at 15:20
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@Quizzer515SY , beyond conventional "samplers", a beautiful and forthcoming answer to this is Synplant 2, it has a "Genopatch" feature that learns from a sound you drag-and-drop in (couldn't be simpler), then generates related mutations and lets you pay it as a fluid, evolving instrument. It does so very well with the "vocal chops" you mentioned too. It has pitch correction so whatever you drag in can play in-tune.

Keep your eyes and ears on it... your future self will thank you.

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  • Will check it out, thanks! Jul 28, 2023 at 15:28
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since he uses Ableton, one way would be, to make a nice sounding vocal chop sequence save it and drag and drop it on a midi track/ ableton can generate a midi melody/chords out of it... At the end of the song you hear the synth play the melody the chops also used, so maybe he layerd the synth and chops while the drop is playing/ melodyne is also an vst that many producers use to pitch correct vocals. It allows you to transpose every single part of your vocal and pick the notes by hand if you like to

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Try DDSP Synth and DDSP effect from tensorflow/Magenta. DDSP morphs audio into a range of different instruments. Unlike MIDI notes, DDSP preserves the nuances of pitch and dynamics for expressive neural synthesis. You can also play it as a synth. Worth a try. This is free as of now.

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