Device Details


Name | Version: Kick Machine 2 1.0
Author: OspreyInstruments
Device Type: Instrument
Description: Kick Machine 2 is a Kick Drum Synthesizer. The original Kick Machine was one of my first devices and desperately needed an update. This is update completely overhauls the original device with a ground-up rewrite and a more streamlined and powerful interface.

There are three "pages" or tabs:

"Sub" is the foundation of the drum synthesizer. At its core, its an additive synthesizer, so partials (octave harmonics) can be mixed directly in. The multi-envelopes give direct control of the pitch, amplitude, and cutoff of the Sallen-Key lowpass filter (think MS-20).

"Click" consists of two generators. A FM (well, actually PM) oscillator can produce enharmonic midrange spikes. Both the carrier frequency and modulator ratio are controllable through the envelope functions. The second generator is a pink noise source. The can be blended together using the Mix knob, and shaped using the bandpass filter (split so the resonant lowpass filter cutoff frequency can have a dedicated envelope).

The final page consists of two effects: a saturation waveshaper and a compressor. Even harmonics can be added to the saturation but turning up the "tube" parameter. This injects some exponential functions into the tanh() making the transfer function asymmetrical. Likewise, the bias set at anything besides 0% will yield a stronger mix of even order harmonics.

The compressor features a knee parameter with a 0dB hard knee producing results similar to a fast VCA compressor. A medium-hard knee would get you into FET (1176) territory, and a soft knee would be more similar to an Opto or Vari-mu compressor. The mode know sweeps between feedback and feed-forward topologies.

- Start with compressor and drive (saturator and sub filter) off, and only the fundemental partial and build up the high frequency information
- The visual shows the waveform on the sub/click pages, and the gain reduction curve on the FX page... When working with the envelopes, hiding the visualizer can help clear up clutter and make it easier to see what you are doing
- If a second kick is triggered before the first finishes, only the portion that played will update in the waveform visualizer
- The stair-step you may see in the compressor curve is the result of the low frequency peaks of the kick. They can be smoothed out with longer attack and release settings
- Switching pages (tabs) turns off the mute/solo buttons
- Mixing the click level can be done by changing the height of the peak on the amplitude envelope
- Try turning up the filter envelope while adjusting the carrier frequency and modulator ratio envelopes... also play around with the mod index
- A kick beater makes an enharmonic cluster in the midrange. The FM (PM) oscillator can be used to create this. The envelopes can taper the FM frequencies generated over the course of the cycle
- The click filter is a split bandpass filter. The resonant LPF is controllable with an envelope, the HPF has a static knob
- The length controls rescale the entire envelope cycle time
- Start the first node of each envelope at 0ms, and make sure the amp envelopes end at 0
- Use the slew (attack and release) controls on the sub/click pages to reduce the click at the start of the cycle. The release won't do much unless sharp amplitude envelopes are drawn in

This device was informed by a series of SoS articles on the subject:


Live Version Used: 10.1.18
Max Version Used: 8.1.5
Date Added: Nov 13 2023 01:23:44
Date Last Updated: No Updates
Downloads: 0
License: None
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