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Old 27-12-2015, 09:34 PM   #41
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by jbvdb493 View Post
You milk the cow and make your cheese too?
I'd say that's akin to making/programming your own oscillators and filters.

But as always, what sounds good sounds good (outside of copyright).

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Old 01-06-2016, 09:02 PM   #42
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Re: Presets vs sound design

If it sounds good, its right.
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Old 02-06-2016, 12:11 AM   #43
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Re: Presets vs Sound Design

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Originally Posted by Andantonius View Post
^This. Imo anyone who shames someone for using presets needs to prove their musical superiority by throwing away all their drum samples, hand-carving a wooden drum body, murdering, skinning, and treating the hide of an animal to put on the body, build their own microphone, cables, etc. and record everything by hand. And even then it's still probably "cheating" cause someone else built their computer, speakers, the EQs they're using, etc.

It's impossible to make music without relying on the work of other people. We use plugins other people made, what's wrong with using presets other people made? The golden rule still applies: if it sounds good it is good.

Personally I do my own sound design because I almost always know what I want so it's faster to just design it from scratch, plus scrolling through presets makes my brain go numb.

I think the only potential downside to using presets is if you use something so obvious and popular that the average listener can recognize it from another track. I don't personally think that degrades your own track in any way, but most people are obsessed with musical purity and authenticity and will probably bitch at you for it.
Yeah, an actual acoustic guitar is not only a preset but is also autotuned.

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Old 02-06-2016, 12:41 AM   #44
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by Sacarious View Post
If you are a producer, then you will go out of your way to know how to create your own sounds, if you are a hobbiest who uses fl studio to make "beats" then go a head and use all your presets.
Its no different than being a chef, as a chef i will not go to a box of kraft dinner (preset)
I will go to the store and buy my pasta and cheese and milk and create it at home.
That way I have full control over how it turns out and what I Put in it.

In reference to music, presets have a lot of different voices and reverbs which can easily and quickly mud up your mix.
so presets are bullshit until further notice, unless you have just the perfect one for a certain application

Thats my two cents.
True story, let me share how I make kraft dinner. (I assume we're talking about the macaroni and cheese in the box, the noodles and powdered cheese with a recipe for how much butter and milk to add when you mix the noodles and powder together)

I boil the noodles, but I add a pinch of salt and half a teaspoon of olive oil to the water. Then on the side I get some unsalted tomato paste and parmesan cheese. Starting a sauce with plain tomato paste allows you to control the thickness and taste. I make it slightly watery and then add the parmesan and the packet of powdered cheese, which thickens it up nicely, along with some standard spices like oregano and black pepper. I then pour this sauce directly over the noodles, no butter or milk used.

I think this applies to this thread and i'm not just hijacking again to talk about pasta or some other random thing.

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Old 02-06-2016, 12:42 AM   #45
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Uuuh... a rocky dismount and and iffy save. That'll cost on the technical score...
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Old 02-06-2016, 10:46 AM   #46
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Re: Presets vs sound design

Good, personal, quality music will ALWAYS shine now matter how it was done.

Personnally, I don't use presets, I enjoy the idea of making my own music at any and all levels. And I love synthesis and sound design. This is how *I* can make it happen, I need my sounds, I need hardware synths in order to get in my composition zone.

Other people make it happen by other means, and that's fine by me. Good music will always outshine bad music in my ears and I could care less about how it's done. If my head moves, I'll approve.

We all have different paths, skill levels, influences, methods, perspectives. What I care about, what I judge, is the actual music that I get to listen to.

so in the end, for me, I would never (not until now at least) use presets, this is not how I do. But if you or anyone else want to use them and is able to make good music with presets, I'm completely fine.

No one should work harder than me to make music :p
but I like to work hard!
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Old 02-06-2016, 08:05 PM   #47
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Re: Presets vs sound design

Back when I owned a good hardware synth, I got good at synthesizing my own presets.
I really mastered the craft, but it took a lot of time.

These days I often stumble across readymade presets that are the exact same sounds as what I used to make and what I'm looking for. I could spend the time to recreate them myself, but it would be a waste of time and effort. If it's already there and I know how to make the preset, there's no advantage to me remaking it all over again. Instead, I just use the preset and tweak it to my liking.

I also make some of my own original presets and I find that using both originals and readymade presets is a good combo in terms of efficiency. Like I said, I like to tweak them.

Some of the readymade presets that I don't know how to make are the ones I tend to avoid because usually they sound so recognizeable and are hard to integrate into a tune. I still try to comprehend what the sound designer did, but often they are kinda just wierd hacks that are difficult to understand.
But it's not such a big loss because some of the wierder more abstract sounds really aren't very musical anyhow.

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Old 02-06-2016, 09:41 PM   #48
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by Nystagmus View Post
These days I often stumble across readymade presets that are the exact same sounds as what I used to make and what I'm looking for. I could spend the time to recreate them myself, but it would be a waste of time and effort. If it's already there and I know how to make the preset, there's no advantage to me remaking it all over again. Instead, I just use the preset and tweak it to my liking.
Exactly. There are so many basic sounds I could make on my own, but why waste the time if it is sitting there right in front of me? Maybe a little tweaking is needed, but why reinvent the wheel?

I'm about fifty/fifty honestly.

There is basic, saturated mono bass patch in one of my favorite synths that I use in over half my songs. I end up tweaking it a lot, but it is already perfect, I know the patch really well. I know it usually sits in the mix pretty easily and what kind of kicks work well with it.

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Old 03-06-2016, 08:01 AM   #49
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Re: Presets vs sound design

I guess it's a matter of personal goal.

for myself, I try to make a very original kind of music, so I need to experiment and find new and interesting sounds.

For the listener, the end result is what matters, but for the composer, what matters is what inspires him or her.

what inspires *me* is when I figure out a way to make a sound I've never heard before (not a *new* sound in absolute, I will never get to hear *all* the sounds that exist)

which is why I prefer true analog synths for example, no presets, no sound banks, user or preset.
which is also why I'm looking to build a modular synth, get something brand new all and each time.


But what we need to differentiate here, is the fact that what matters to the listener is not especially what matters to us.

The end result is what matters to the listener, how we get there is what matters to us.

So if you do good music, I don't care how you did it.
But if you try to follow someone else's rule on how to make your music, most likely, you'll end up making uninspired music (although we can always try and experiment on new methods, get out of our comfort zone).

I know I can make good music with presets, but I also know it won't be as good as if I did it from scratch, because the fact that I'd use a sound that someone else made, is uninspiring to me.

But I don't think no one should ever use presets, I just think *I* don't want to use presets.

From all the music I listen to and love, I'm sure many artists use presets, and it's fine by me if their music is good enough for me.
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Old 12-06-2016, 06:23 PM   #50
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Re: Presets vs sound design

Does it really matter, could be the poorest track by a sound designer or a great track by someone who uses pre-sets, people have done far more worse things than this such as sampling certain parts of full tracks.
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Old 12-06-2016, 07:01 PM   #51
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Re: Presets vs sound design

sometimes I use presets and then tweak em a bit so they don't sound so generic if I'm trying to get a certain sound quickly
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Old 12-06-2016, 07:57 PM   #52
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Re: Presets vs sound design

I learned how to program by almost never using presets.

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Old 12-06-2016, 10:09 PM   #53
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by stray medicine View Post
sometimes I use presets and then tweak em a bit so they don't sound so generic if I'm trying to get a certain sound quickly
to be honest I do that if I don't like the sound and want to make it my own
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Old 13-06-2016, 03:27 AM   #54
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by Sacarious View Post
In reference to music, presets have a lot of different voices and reverbs which can easily and quickly mud up your mix.
You have absolutely no idea what you're talking about do you?
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Old 13-06-2016, 07:47 AM   #55
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by Emmanuel G. View Post
Good, personal, quality music will ALWAYS shine now matter how it was done.

Personnally, I don't use presets, I enjoy the idea of making my own music at any and all levels. And I love synthesis and sound design. This is how *I* can make it happen, I need my sounds, I need hardware synths in order to get in my composition zone.

Other people make it happen by other means, and that's fine by me. Good music will always outshine bad music in my ears and I could care less about how it's done. If my head moves, I'll approve.

We all have different paths, skill levels, influences, methods, perspectives. What I care about, what I judge, is the actual music that I get to listen to.

so in the end, for me, I would never (not until now at least) use presets, this is not how I do. But if you or anyone else want to use them and is able to make good music with presets, I'm completely fine.

No one should work harder than me to make music :p
but I like to work hard!
+1

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Old 14-06-2016, 06:53 AM   #56
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Re: Presets vs sound design

I personally think that to not be interested in sound on a fundamental level, to the point where the originality of the sound matters artistically, is a big failure on the artist's part. A second class artist sort of. And I know even professional artists whose attitude to their art is more like "what can I get away with (and get paid)", rather than "what can I create". It's sad.

Presets and samples are not really difficult to work with. They're pieces of music, they already contain that creativity pre-made, which is what the artist should be for, to produce new art. What creativity is that if what you're doing is basically reorganizing art created by others? Composition (well literally yes)? More like recycling or ripping off.

I let people do what they want to, but I don't accept that people who don't create original art wear titles that imply original art. Such as "sound design(er)" or even just "artist". If you don't design sounds, then what sound design are you doing? Same with composition or anything for that matter. I you don't do, what you say you do, then why do you pretend you do and why should others respect you for what you don't do? It's pretentious, to pretend to be what you aren't or cannot be fairly compared to. I don't understand how someone could gain pleasure from being praised for work that is mostly not their work. Good work (for someone else's part). And still it's fairly easy to "trick" people into believing you're a pro or musical genius or whatever, by using pro sounds made by someone else.

It's very different to spend 6 months on a track that's fully original than spend two weeks on a track that's full of pre-existing sound. They cannot be placed in the same category, because that's unfair comparison. Those who put in more work, deserve to be respected for more work.

Presets are honestly useless for those that know their chops and have genuine artistic ideas. Samples are a different beast, since some things must be samples and some samples are just very well produced in order to motivate their usage. However, there should still be some concept of originality. E.g. not using some pre-made sequences as the basis of your track.

I think music that uses "what everyone else is using" is boring and uninventive. I would like people to recognize music that's not original. This is currently usually impossible since no-one tends to ask "where did you get the sounds" when listening to a track. I do ask that question though and refuse to listen or buy music that displays no originality.

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Even some pretty original artists such as Aphex Twin do copy others by e.g. sampling, so the technique is not "banned", but if you listen carefully their use of sampling is still heaps and bounds more creative than "sampling and letting it be like it is". They really transfer the sample to be almost like a totally different sound, in a totally different context. That's creative use of sampling, rather than unoriginal ripping.

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Old 15-06-2016, 10:26 AM   #57
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Re: Presets vs sound design

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Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
I personally think that to not be interested in sound on a fundamental level, to the point where the originality of the sound matters artistically, is a big failure on the artist's part. A second class artist sort of. And I know even professional artists whose attitude to their art is more like "what can I get away with (and get paid)", rather than "what can I create". It's sad.
Well, we all are, for the most part at least, "second class artists".
To many, making music is a hobby, something to pass the time when they're not at work, that's fine too.
For myself, I want to try and make the greatest music I can, my references and inspirations are from the grandest composers dead or alive. But this is my path, that I choose for myself.
Most musicians will not choose this path, and that's fine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
Presets and samples are not really difficult to work with. They're pieces of music, they already contain that creativity pre-made, which is what the artist should be for, to produce new art. What creativity is that if what you're doing is basically reorganizing art created by others? Composition (well literally yes)? More like recycling or ripping off.
Indeed, but if you want to push this reflexion further, we then should craft our own instruments too, as any synth or piece of gear is also someone else's creativity, a minimoog is not the same thing as an ms20 for example, yet they're both a "monophonic analogic synth".
A Les Paul is not the same guitar as a Stratocaster.
One could also argue that unless you actually build your own instruments and tools, you are not a "real" artist. (it's absurd on purpose here)

Quote:
Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
I let people do what they want to, but I don't accept that people who don't create original art wear titles that imply original art. Such as "sound design(er)" or even just "artist". If you don't design sounds, then what sound design are you doing? Same with composition or anything for that matter. I you don't do, what you say you do, then why do you pretend you do and why should others respect you for what you don't do? It's pretentious, to pretend to be what you aren't or cannot be fairly compared to. I don't understand how someone could gain pleasure from being praised for work that is mostly not their work. Good work (for someone else's part). And still it's fairly easy to "trick" people into believing you're a pro or musical genius or whatever, by using pro sounds made by someone else.
Well, most of them call themselves "producers" which is fine by me, they're putting out "products" that they "produce".
I call myself a composer, because I make compositions, melodies, harmonies, sounds etc...
I'd never call myself a producer anymore, this is not what I am.
But if your goal (not especially you) is to "produce" products, it's fine that you call yourself a "producer" then, most musicians on electronic music boards go with that.

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Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
It's very different to spend 6 months on a track that's fully original than spend two weeks on a track that's full of pre-existing sound. They cannot be placed in the same category, because that's unfair comparison. Those who put in more work, deserve to be respected for more work.
I think 2 weeks for most is already a lot of time, some can put out 4 or 5 tracks a day nowadays.
When you spend that much time, you're searching inside of yourself, getting to know what you feel, who you are and express it, this takes time, a lifetime actually, and it's very rewarding.
But then again, most people are not ready to do that to themselves.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
Presets are honestly useless for those that know their chops and have genuine artistic ideas. Samples are a different beast, since some things must be samples and some samples are just very well produced in order to motivate their usage. However, there should still be some concept of originality. E.g. not using some pre-made sequences as the basis of your track.
agreed

Quote:
Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
I think music that uses "what everyone else is using" is boring and uninventive. I would like people to recognize music that's not original. This is currently usually impossible since no-one tends to ask "where did you get the sounds" when listening to a track. I do ask that question though and refuse to listen or buy music that displays no originality.
As long as it's done with heart, sincerely, and with work and passion, I'm fine with good music, even unoriginal music.
Sometimes, the most cliché melodies can really tie a track together and give it that popular reference, helping listeners to relate to that track. Even if the rest of the track can be total and utter chaotic nonsense. I like to mix popular-ish sounds or melodies along with more experimental stuff.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mviljamaa View Post
Even some pretty original artists such as Aphex Twin do copy others by e.g. sampling, so the technique is not "banned", but if you listen carefully their use of sampling is still heaps and bounds more creative than "sampling and letting it be like it is". They really transfer the sample to be almost like a totally different sound, in a totally different context. That's creative use of sampling, rather than unoriginal ripping.
Taking greats as reference is a good habit to have, as you are constantly reminded that you can do better.


I agree with you, but there's no need to judge others because they don't have the same discipline as you are. We are not all able to become great (rather, we all are, but not everyone wants or even knows), for many, most even, music isn't as important as it is for you or myself.

Nevertheless, I believe musical practice, even simplistic, should be encouraged rather than frowned upon for how unoriginal it may be.

Music is not as important for most as it is for you and me, but for all, it significantly improves quality of life. For that alone, every musician should be celebrated and encouraged.
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Old 15-06-2016, 10:40 AM   #58
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Re: Presets vs sound design

Kid Koala does no music himself. yet he is an artist in the aspect of: combining samples, digging out samples and scratching vinyl. I enjoy some of his pieces a lot. Artistic expression can be so many things.

If its pure sample, get it done quickly, live of others work to just cash in I am a little hesitant to call it artistic but I think that is a hard way to succeed today. It was easier 15 years ago when the electronic scene was still weak, pop was more shit and hearing a rapper over a good old resampled song actually contributed with something for many. Most serious rappers these days take on original projects, with how the mixing in commercial music changed over the past 10-15 years its not as easy just sampling and putting stuff on top if you wanna into the battle of becoming a name in music as the quality will still lack. You need well made shit that stands out and just sampling stuff wont get you there today.

I mean in days of early ambient DnB days it was a lot of samples used (like LTJ-Bukem) and some 808 kick founded bassline on top, These days people make this kind of DnB without sampling at all and are more talented and ahead so they don't even need samples and reach better results.

I think if you wanna become a true musical force you gotta be able to use all techniques. A sample to honor the old is liked by many. You gotta be able to sound design to have control of your stuff. Using presets is just a saving time thing or a thing you use before your sound design is good enough to reach same results. Use the tools you are confident in and that are available to you. Just making stuff and music should be most important.

Last edited by Crude_beats; 15-06-2016 at 10:51 AM..
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Old 15-06-2016, 11:07 AM   #59
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Re: Presets vs sound design

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crude_beats View Post
I think if you wanna become a true musical force you gotta be able to use all techniques. A sample to honor the old is liked by many. You gotta be able to sound design to have control of your stuff. Using presets is just a saving time thing or a thing you use before your sound design is good enough to reach same results. Use the tools you are confident in and that are available to you. Just making stuff and music should be most important.
this exactly. but it all comes down to what does every individual musician wants to achieve, and I can only speak for myself here.

but the act of making music to begin with is already something to celebrate.
presets, fully home made sounds, these are details only relevant to the musician him(or her)self in the end.

As said above by others, it's also a choice from the listener to look for original artists, innovative artists, and also unoriginal, popular, vanilla artists.

we all have different paths

sound design is so fun tho

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