Author Topic: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?  (Read 10022 times)

Bertie South

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Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« on: January 26, 2016, 09:43:36 pm »
IYO.

I need to learn synthesis properly before I try making any more tracks, so I want to pick one synth and learn it inside out.

I don't really have anything apart from stock synths atm, and I figure if I buy just one I'm more likely to be forced to learn it thoroughly. But that also means I'll need something I can rely on pretty heavily, so it would have to be versatile.

If you wouldn't go for Sylenth, what would you go for instead?

Basically I was gonna just make a 'what synth should I learn synthesis on' thread but a lot of people mentioned Sylenth as their first. Harmor, Serum and Massive came up also. I'm not a complete noob (I had a Virus B for a couple of years), but I want to get a hell of a lot better at making my ideas into reality.

Thanks peeps!
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Xan

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2016, 10:37:58 pm »
I like Massive better if I had to choose only 1.
Followed by Serum
Then sylenth.

Bertie South

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2016, 11:15:56 pm »
Thanks man. I've been playing with Massive, makes some very nice noises :D
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Ninth Parallel

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2016, 11:17:21 pm »
Sylenth is versatile enough to be a go-to synth in my opinion, every electronic sound in my song Infinitum was made with sylenth

FarleyCZ

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2016, 11:58:42 pm »
Depends.

Sylenth is classic and it will get you a lot of experience with basic VA-ish subtractive synthesis. ...but it has it's limits. It heavily depends on type of music you're going for. Some complex stuff might be just out of Sylenth's reach.

If you think you'd like some modern complex reeses or evolving textures, Massive or Serum would be better choices. ...if just for their step LFOs alone.
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vinceasot

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2016, 12:58:12 am »
yes ofc sylenth and massive are the best soft synths man, every electronic track has at least sylenth or massive in it, every single day theres patches that come out for it




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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2016, 03:55:25 am »
best soft synths

I strongly discourage anyone claiming this for any synth.

The fact is, synthesizers like Sylenth, Massive, and honestly soon to be Serum are responsible for so many sounds because they're popular, not necessarily because they are objectively better or worse than any random synth you could think of. When you start looking at the fundamentals of sound design the actual synthesizer doesn't matter so much as what kind of synthesizer they are. Sylenth has a lot of really popular sounds already built in, so people tend to like it for that and when new producers start looking for the sounds they heard, you get people saying "oh well x y z synth is the best because a b c producer used it in all their tracks" and so they learn that synth and then when newer producers start looking for THOSE sounds they find people saying the same sorts of things.

I'd focus more on learning how subtractive synthesis works, and learning how different waveforms sound under different conditions (lots of unison and some pitch spread, 2 voices detuned slightly against each other, with one oscillator an octave higher or a fifth higher, with reverb, with distortion, with reverb and distortion (swap the order around too!), and with chorus/flanging/phasing/delay). Don't chase the gear, chase the experience.

ZUDDOX

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2016, 06:51:34 am »
best soft synths

I strongly discourage anyone claiming this for any synth.

The fact is, synthesizers like Sylenth, Massive, and honestly soon to be Serum are responsible for so many sounds because they're popular, not necessarily because they are objectively better or worse than any random synth you could think of. When you start looking at the fundamentals of sound design the actual synthesizer doesn't matter so much as what kind of synthesizer they are. Sylenth has a lot of really popular sounds already built in, so people tend to like it for that and when new producers start looking for the sounds they heard, you get people saying "oh well x y z synth is the best because a b c producer used it in all their tracks" and so they learn that synth and then when newer producers start looking for THOSE sounds they find people saying the same sorts of things.

I'd focus more on learning how subtractive synthesis works, and learning how different waveforms sound under different conditions (lots of unison and some pitch spread, 2 voices detuned slightly against each other, with one oscillator an octave higher or a fifth higher, with reverb, with distortion, with reverb and distortion (swap the order around too!), and with chorus/flanging/phasing/delay). Don't chase the gear, chase the experience.

Second this. I think Sylenth1 is great for beginners because of the presets. Use something that's intuitive to you so that you can start making tracks immediately. You will learn the most by just jumping in, experimenting and making tracks. When you hit a roadblock, that's the time to ask questions and watch tutorial videos.

Once you get really good at using one or two synths, at that point you'll pretty much know how to make any sound you want. Also, check out Sytrus and Spire (again, lots of presets to help those new to synths). 3x Osc is also great for playing around with.

Cheers, zuddox

KickingPlastic

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2016, 07:06:21 am »
Technically the synth is more than capable of producing the majority of sounds available from subtractive synthesis. Look at what Dance was made with originally, with the likes of the Bellefield Three and 808 State using cheap old kit like the SH101 and DX100 and learning the fuck out of it. Coupled with a good sampling instrument, you've a huge sonic palette already.

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Bertie South

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2016, 11:01:17 am »

I'd focus more on learning how subtractive synthesis works, and learning how different waveforms sound under different conditions (lots of unison and some pitch spread, 2 voices detuned slightly against each other, with one oscillator an octave higher or a fifth higher, with reverb, with distortion, with reverb and distortion (swap the order around too!), and with chorus/flanging/phasing/delay). Don't chase the gear, chase the experience.


Cool, thanks for the tips man.


I don't think the popular synths become popular completely by accident. I mean sure, at some point their popularity becomes self-sustaining, but they have to fundamentally not suck to get to that point.


And yeah I didn't ask for the 'best' anything, because the answer to that is pretty much always 'it depends'.
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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2016, 06:31:00 pm »
I don't think the popular synths become popular completely by accident. I mean sure, at some point their popularity becomes self-sustaining, but they have to fundamentally not suck to get to that point.

Of course! Take Massive, for example. That workhorse came out in 2007, and almost a decade later people are still creating some pretty fresh sounds with something that has basically only received updates to make it run faster and more efficiently.

It's not about the tool, it's about how the artist uses that tool.

EDIT:

I'm gonna parrot what cryophonik said - I own HIVE and it's a great synth for all the same sort of simple waveform doing simple things through simple filters getting a really great sound. It's very no nonsense, and you can have the same sort of modulate everything connect-ability of synths like Serum.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2016, 08:38:51 pm by Mussar »

cryophonik

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2016, 07:54:48 pm »
On paper, Sylenth is pretty limited compared to most of the other synths mentioned here, in terms of features.  But, it makes up for that by having a huge sweet spot and a great overall sound.  I personally find it great for many things, but too limited to be my go-to or only synth.

FWIW, I'd recommend looking at U-he Hive for a deeper alternative to Sylenth.  If you followed its development over on KVR over the past few years, you'd see that Urs pretty much designed it to cover Sylenth's range and to pick up where it left off.
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Xan

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2016, 08:03:09 pm »
Technically the synth is more than capable of producing the majority of sounds available from subtractive synthesis. Look at what Dance was made with originally, with the likes of the Bellefield Three and 808 State using cheap old kit like the SH101 and DX100 and learning the fuck out of it. Coupled with a good sampling instrument, you've a huge sonic palette already.

It's easy to get too hung up with Pokemon collect-em-all with plug ins!

To be fair, you remember how huge pokemon was and still is?

Matt Viper

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2016, 12:36:39 pm »
Absolutely! And it`s really easy on cpu.
But! Serum can do it all and more! So if cpu is not the problem I`d go for Serum, because eventually you will want something like massive/serum.
Okay, so your classic subtractive synthesis is covered. Then you may want to dive into some FM Synthesis and for this I recommend FM8 and Sytrus.

maxking

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Re: Is Sylenth versatile enough to be your only/go-to synth?
« Reply #14 on: February 01, 2016, 12:08:22 am »
what i always find weird about different digital synthesizers is that even if you copy paste all settings they sound a bit different (of course other envelope slopes) or even if you only use a simple saw ...
i remember someone saying in another forum that sylenth is really intense in the low and high frequencies and thats why it is more useful for sounds that cover these frequencies.. on the other side there is e.g. spire that covers the mids more

dont know if this is true :D but this would mean that some variation between some synths is not bad.. also i have to say wavetable synthesis is definitely something i would miss on sylenth being my only synth
« Last Edit: February 01, 2016, 12:31:33 am by maxking »