Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Free Ableton Instrument: Sharkjumper

Wubwubwubwubwubwubwub. Urp.

I swore I'd never make a straight-up dubstep bass patch, but since that train shows no sign of stopping this year, it's time for me to jump the shark.

Of course, I couldn't resist calling attention to that fact, so the preset is named... Well, you KNOW what it's named.

The process for creating the patch:

First, I created a hard sounding buzzy wave using my modular Doepferheim (see here for more info), then I blasted the levels as I recorded it into Ableton.

From there, I created a very short loop in Simpler and mapped the start point to a Macro knob so you can scan it as a wavetable. Just. Like. Massive.

I then added two effects to the chain - a phaser and an overdrive. The phaser is for doing pseudo formant-shifting effects. Just. Like. Massive.

The overdrive is for adding distortion to the sound. Just. Like. Massive.

And naturally, I added a tempo-synced LFO to the filter cutoff.

Finally, I fiddled with the ranges for each Macro for maximum tweakability. After all, wub-wubs are nice & stuff, but for a synth to be useful it's got to have some flexibility, y'know?

Here's a guide to the macros:

Spectra: Scans the source sample for a wavetable effect

Formant: Shifts the frequency of the formant peak created by the phaser

Lowpass: Cutoff frequency for the lowpass filter. Works in conjunction with the Wub parameters

Drive Color: Controls the drive amount and EQ of the overdrive effect

Envelope: Morphs the amplifier envelope from a percussive shape to a full sustain, gated shape

Glide: Gliiiiiiide

Wub Rate: Controls the speed of the filter LFO (tempo-synced)

Wub Depth: Controls the depth of the filter LFO

For examples, I created two clips in Live's session window. One does the classic dubstep wub-wub thing. The other is a more percussive, staccato riff to demonstrate the range of the instrument.

Here's the Ableton Live file containing the preset. If you dig, just click the save button and add it to your library.

Francis Preve - Sharkjumper (compatible with Ableton Live 8.1.5 and higher)

The next free download comes when my Facebook page hits 3,000 - which at this rate, could be rather soon :)


  1. this is great.. thanks!

  2. thank you a lot for sharing this, and for free, rebloged at:

  3. Wow, this is one of the coolest implementations of Simpler that I have seen.
    This patch has many implications beyond dubstep.
    Nice name too haha.

  4. Thanks Francis.

    Dub Wub time cometh!