Anyone get close to vowel like sounds with the A4?

Hey there!

I was wondering if anyone has got any patches close to vowel like sounds with their A4. i read the SOS article on Formant synthesis and i understand its a fairly tricky business alright which can only really be done with FM synthesis. (i have also watched a few vids on the mono machine with its formant stuff and it sounds amazing!)
anyway I’m not really asking to get believable or even robotic formant synthesis out of the a4 but would love if anyone might have any pointers on maybe getting the kinda auto way sounds or anything like that.
as always - any help would be greatly appreciated!


I have. I even have some songs that were named after what the sounds appeared to say :slight_smile:

Problem is… I don’t recall the project names so I would have to dig through my notes to find them heh.

Are the lfo´s on the A4 fast enough to get some decent filter fm sounds??

You can get FM effects from the LFOs, but theyre aliased and you have to tune via parameter locks for each indivual note.

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Low pass followed by high pass - modulate the high pass cutoff and adjust res to get the right sound - lower res works best.


it’s pretty easy with neighbor tracks. try a square pitched low on track 1 and high pass, neighbor and lowpass on second.

when you modulate them mess with using inverted or reversed or whatever lfos and phase offset.

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Has void written his A4 speech synthesizer app yet?

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Wow, void is writing a speech synthesizer app?!
That guy is a legend (or is from tron :-))

Erm, I think I was wrong. I think that it’s jonah who is writing the speech synth app for AF.

But anyway, to actually answer your question, you don’t necessarily need FM to do rudimentary speech synthesis. The Monomachine manual actually rather nicely explains how to do a basic version. You need to consider vowels and consonants: vowels are long and pitched sounds, and the individual vowel sounds are determined by about two formant filters (you can try bandpass or near equivalent resonant lowpass filters with specific resonance frequencies that match the resonant frequencies of the major human vocal tract cavities. For compounded vowels, you have to slide from one vowel to another. For consonants you can use noise or other unpitched sounds.
The difficulty for realistic speech is that people adapt their sounds depending on what the preceding and subsequent sounds are. It’s very difficult to emulate that with a sequenced musical instrument, which is why most speech synths sound so stilted. I don’t have an AF, but I know it would be extremely difficult to do. Why not start with some sustained vowel sounds?

I made a pretty convincing opera singer on the A4, I’ll try to dig up the sound and post it here…

PeterHanes is right on, the 2 resonant peaks close to each other are key to vowel sounds. The 2 lowpass filters of the A4 with each a resonant peak at slightly different freqeuncy should do the trick. Add a little vibrato and there is the opera singer :slight_smile:

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couldnt help myself but need to post this here


Erm, I think I was wrong. I think that it’s jonah who is writing the speech synth app for AF.[/quote]
i messed with it a bit, it really wasn’t worth the time imo. i find it’s easy enough to get vocal like sounds and kinda more interesting and faster to use in music to do it by hand because i don’t want intelligible voice, just vocal sounds.
beyond that i’d just buy this on the cheap :slight_smile:

i guess yamaha has software you can grab to make it say whatever.

i wonder with the fpga if the insides of the a4 are reconfigurable enough that maybe someday elektron will reconfigure the a4 to work as a vocoder.

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They made a sex toy talk. That cracks me up.blahshahahhhhhhhh

A post was merged into an existing topic: Voice like squelches and wobbles

Hi dear elektronauts :slight_smile:

i just wanted to know if its possible to get a voice like sound out of the A4, as heard often in Psytrance, Progressive Goa and the likes…
for example:
around 4:00 minutes in.
and if so, can u tell me how thanks in advance :slight_smile:

never tried … pointers here that may inspire

I did some work on making nice vocal formants on the A4 a while back. i put together a little cheat sheet for the frequencies I needed and then went to town making a series of presets. Heres what i was working off of:

My approach was to create each one of those vowel formants using two chained together voices of the A4. I set the first track to have 100 volume in the amp section but 0 track level then on the next track I set osc 2 to neighbor and turned Bosc 1 off. On both tracks I opened filter 1 100% and set filter 2 to peak mode. the cutoff settings in the A4’s filters actually correspond to midi note numbers so you can dial in specific frequencies. The chart on page 2 in the PDF above shows you which note numbers correspond to which frequencies. For each vowel I set track 1’s f2 cutoff to the lower frequency and did the same on track 2 for the high frequency. I saved both as a preset with the name of the vowel and the track number. There are some tables out there with a 3rd formant frequency for each vowel so I added a 3rd track to all the presets at some point. When I finished I added all of them to the sound pool. Now it’s easy to create a melody on the sequencer, copy the trig pattern to multiple tracks, and use sound locks to get to vocal sound. I also set up the performance controls to offset the f2 cutoff of both tracks simultaneously making formant shifts if they’re adjusted by the same amount or making a formant stretching sound if they’re different. Here’s a dumb little pattern i threw together to show you what it sounds like.


That sounds way cool man; thanks for sharing

Helloliamdaly, cool sounds!

I actually really like making voice-like sounds on the A4. I usually go for oscillator sync and a peak filter, with some carefully modulated noise. I could post a more detailed explanation tomorrow if anyone is interested.

Anyway, I made a really silly cover of the silly German version of the opening theme for the classic Sailor Moon anime - using only the Analog Four, of course. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

So, the voice there is my patch.

EDIT: OH, okay - not THAT voice like. I misunderstood.

For that I would go for some distortion and again, the peak filter. I think there is a TB-303-ish preset on the A4 which would sound very similar if you tweak the attack of the filter envelope.

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