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Synth block

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Available on which Fractal Audio products

  • Axe-Fx III: 2 blocks
  • Axe-Fx II: 2 blocks
  • AX8: 1 block
  • FX8: 1 block

X/Y and channels

  • Axe-Fx III: 2 channels
  • Axe-Fx II: no
  • AX8: no
  • FX8: no

What can the Synth do

"The Synth block is a very simple monophonic synth. It doesn't compare to the polyphonic capabilities of something like the FTP and it can't control outboard MIDI synths." source

How to control the Synth

The Synth block requires monophonic input. This means that you have play REALLY clean. Always hit single notes and avoid overlapping notes.

Turning off voices saves CPU

The Synth has 3 voices. Turn off voices that you don't use to save some CPU.

Parameters table

Parameter Axe-Fx III Axe-Fx II AX8, FX8
Per voice:
Type yes
Track yes
Frequency yes
Shift yes
Tune yes
Duty Cycle yes
Pan yes
Filter Frequency yes
Filter Q yes
Attack yes
Level yes

Tips

Start a simple Sine tone

Set a single voice to Sine and turn off Tracking.

Warm up the Synth sound

To warm up the Synth, add a Drive block before or after it, such as a RAT model.

Fatten the Synth tone

To fatten the Synth, use at least two voices and detune them slightly. source

Create a drone note

Turn off Voices 2 and 3. In voice 1 switch off Tracking and adjust pitch with the Frequency parameter. Look up the frequencies of notes

Tips:

  • Try the Sawtooth waveform.
  • Make the sound fatter by using two Synth voices set to the same frequency.
  • Make the sound less boring by adding a low-pass Filter with lfo-controlled Frequency.
  • Make the sound wider by adding a 100% wet Multi-Delay (Axe-Fx III: Plex Delay) set to Detune.
  • Change the pitch of the drone note, by switching the Synth between channels (Axe-Fx III only) or by using Scene Controllers, attached to the Pitch parameter of the voice(s).

Create pink or white noise

The Synth block can generate white or pink noise.

Create a siren

Select a Square waveform and attach a LFO to the FREQ parameter of a single voice. Add a large Reverb.

Emit a calibration tone

"Set the synth block to a 1K sine wave at -12 dB. Turn OUTPUT 1 to the maximum level position." source
"There's actually a hidden calibration tone that is used during functional test. The Synth block is reference quality. I use it all the time to generate test tones. The output is spectrally purer than my $2000 Stanford Research Systems Synthesized Function Generator." source

More information about the Synth