How To Create A House Chord Stab With 3xOsc

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How To Create A House Chord Stab With 3xOsc

In this tutorial I will show you how to program a house chord stab using FL Studio’s 3xOsc. You have probably heard this type of sound in many house tracks. Here’s an audio example:

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Ok. First, load 3xOsc and choose square wave as the oscillator shape for each three oscillator, set the Osc 1 coarse tune to -24 semitones, Osc 2 -17 semitones and Osc 3 -20 semitones. Set the Osc 1 stereo detune (SD) to -10 cents to spread the stereo image:

To analyze the settings a little, we just tuned the oscillators to form a major chord: oscillator 1 is tuned down by two octaves (12 semitones = 1 octave), oscillator 2 by 17 semitones and oscillator 3 by 20 semitones.. so now, if you press note C in your MIDI keyboard (or draw a C note to the Piano Roll), you’ll actually hear notes C (osc1), E (osc2) and G (osc3) which is a C major chord (triad). If you play D it is a D major chord, E is E major and so on..

Next, we need to utilize the volume envelope so go to the INS -tab and from there to VOL -tab and click on the ‘Use envelope’ -button to enable it and use ultra-short attack time by turning the Attack all the way to left. This is required for a sharp and stabby sound.

House Chord Stab Volume Envelope Settings

Now, to really make the sound stabby, we need to activate the filter cutoff envelope so open the CUT -tab and enable the envelope. As for settings, turn the Modulation Amount (AMT), Attack, Sustain, and Release controllers as follows:

Filter Cutoff Envelope Settings For House Chord

The Modulation Amount controls how the envelope is applied to the modulation target which is filter cutoff in this case. The filter cutoff value is set in the ‘Filter section’ (check below the envelope section) and the envelope act as an offset of that value. If you leave the Modulation Amount -knob to center position, the envelope doesn’t do anything – it will not be applied to this value. But if you turn it left, the envelope SUBTRACTS from the filter cutoff value and if you turn it right, the envelope ADDS to the value… So to put it simply – and assuming we leave the Filter section -settings as is – turning the modulation amount left kind of ‘closes’ the sound, and turning it right (near to the center point) ‘opens’ it.

As for the envelope controllers, shortening the Attack time sculpts the sound to sharp and stabby and turning the Sustain level and Release time all the way to right keeps the sound ‘closed’ in case you play long notes (of course whether it sounds ‘closed’ or ‘open’ depends on the modulation amount settings.

Next, head to the MISC -tab and under the ‘Polyphony’ enable the Portamento (sliding the pitch from note to note) and Monophonic mode (maximum one note played at a time) and tweak the Portamento time (Slide) to 1:03 (this’ll set the portamento slide length between notes to fairly slow. It is also used for overlapping notes as the monophonic mode is turned on):

Enable Portamento And Monophonic Mode

Now, assign the 3xOsc to a free Mixer track and load Fruity Blood Overdrive to it’s effect slot. It’s a distortion fx and we use it to add a fairly subtle distortion to the sound (to ‘edgify’ it a little). Set x100 mode on, PostGain to to around -0.5 and PreAmp to around 0.11:

Fruity Blood Overdrive Settings

x100 mode increases the power of PreAmp a hundred times. PostGain is the final gain reducer which you need to use to compensate the output boosts created with PreAmp parameter (and to protect your ears!). PreAmp overdrives the audio in order to achieve distortion.

Next, drop Fruity Parametric EQ 2 to the 3xOsc effect slot, and use peaking filter to boost the 6.2kHz area by 6.7dB to add a bit of clarity:

Clarity Via EQ

And for some extra interest and atmosphere, add Fruity Reeverb to the effect slot, use short Decay time (1.1 seconds), use Pre Delay to create slap-back echo effect (try value of 250 ms), turn the Color to Warmer to add some warmth to the reverb signal and lastly, drop the Reverb level a tiny bit (to 17%):

Fruity Reeverb Settings For The Stab

That’s about it. Now go and make some house with this sound.. 🙂

Oh and if you’re interested to know how I made the audio example you heard in the beginning, I just created a following sequence of notes to the 3xOsc Piano Roll:

Example Chord Stab Sequence

Then, I went to the Playlist, copy and pasted the sequence, opened the 3xOsc and under the INS and CUT -tab I created and automation clip for the Modulation Amount (AMT) -controller:

Modulation Amount Automation

In the Playlist, I edited the Modulation Amount automation envelope like this:

Modulation Amount Automation Envelope

Then I copy and pasted the whole sequence and dropped a drumloop I made earlier for this tutorial:

Adding Drumloop

The end 😀

Watch the video below and download the FL Studio 10 project file for this sound:

Download House Chord Stab FL Studio 10 Project File

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About Author

Petri Suhonen is an electronic music hobbyist. He has been producing music with computers over a decade on such styles as trance, downtempo, ambient & experimental electronic using FL Studio.

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52 Comments on "How To Create A House Chord Stab With 3xOsc"

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Lance
Lance
4 years 3 months ago

Awesome!! but will it throw my song out of key? For example if I’m working with C minor, there is no F# but if I do this and put in a D, the major third of D is F#. Will that mess things up?

Kopachris
Kopachris
4 years 2 months ago

Short answer: No. Long answer: it depends on how you use it. The trick here is that is *is* a major chord. When used as a chord, it will sound like any other major chord, so you’ll probably still have the ‘C’ part, but not the “minor” part. When used in a progression, however, it’s the progression itself that determines what key you’re in, not the individual notes. Emphasis on the third and the sixth (Eb and Ab in C minor) can be used to ensure you’re in the mode you want.

#ax
#ax
4 years 3 months ago

Thanks Petri! ! !

ibrahim
ibrahim
4 years 3 months ago

very great tutorial, AGAIN,
i just follow all your tutorials
and what can i say, it’s just perfect and sound very good,
Keep it up petri, you are very good in explaining,

again, KEEP IT UP, and try to put more tutorials if you have time:-)

Alex Dickson
Alex Dickson
4 years 3 months ago

HOLY CRAP!!! THIS IS PERFECT!!!

Max Golovanov
4 years 3 months ago

Another big tutorial this time!

Impressed by Petri’s idea to create chord!!! with 3xOsc – really smart! WOW!!!

Special thanks for explaining all these details (ADSR of VOL & CUT, FX chains) of sound design – Petri’s step by step progress as teacher of sound design is unquestionable!

P.S. BTW, Petri – what do you think about launching of official music contest in your site – I’m ready to take part in it with a track based on your tutorials! As far as I know Soundcloud.com has special proposals for music contest makers 😉

Dilon
4 years 3 months ago

Hey Petri,

Can you make the same tutorial on Ableton live? In Ableton Live There is no 3xosc. 🙁

bino11
1 year 7 months ago

check point blank online tutorial

Richard
4 years 3 months ago

Petri, you rock!

I’m from the Dominican Republic and I have here in my farm a Mule I want to send you as a gift for all the knowledge you share with us. She’s a keeper! And a sweet-heart but eats all my carrots.

Whaever
Whaever
4 years 1 month ago

yo wanna go eat some mangu later?

Bucio
Bucio
4 years 3 months ago

Thx for all your tutorials and tips 🙂 Big cheers from Poland 🙂
Check my new track http://sendfile.pl/180078/Bucio_-_Beat_207.mp3 I’m just a begginer so it doesn’t sound very good.

FinL
FinL
4 years 3 months ago

Excellent. The only thing missing is…..the rest of the tune! I want to hear the rest of it! 😉 Are you planning on developing it further? Sounds nice.

On that note, do you tend to work on a track from beginning to end once something grabs you about it, or do you leave things and go back later? Just wondered. Anyway, thanks for another excellent tutorial.

FinL
FinL
4 years 3 months ago

@Bucio – sounds good. Keep going!! You’re well on your way 🙂

Bill Kucera
4 years 2 months ago
Hello Petri! My name is Bill. I’ve been playing guitar since the late 80’s (finally picking it up again back in 2010!). I tried recording during my 20’s but didn’t really get any where. I’ve had FL Studio for the past 6 weeks now and I wanted to thank you so much for your video tutorials. They have been some of the best out there! no bullshit cause the overwhelming majority of tutorials really are bad. like they shouldn’t be there at all. Just wasting space and confusing people. You do it right, thank God. Peace, Love and dubstep! 🙂
neko
4 years 2 months ago

how to you get that little bar above everyything that tells you the percentages of what your turning up or down?

harry
harry
4 years 2 months ago

hey! this is realy amaizing but how i can get the drum loop you made?

Antoine
Antoine
4 years 2 months ago

Once again, it’s a quality tutorial you made.
Thanks for the bunch of knowledge you’re freely sharing with everybody, even more that you’re an excellent teacher and the explanations are very clear.
Keep up the excellent work !

Karsten
Karsten
4 years 2 months ago

Nice tutorials. Seriouslt keep it up. Used some of yourè tuts in this song : ” http://www.newgrounds.com/audio/listen/495457 “. Now I need something about a good microphone, wich is cheap and transportable. That would have been awsome.

karli
karli
4 years 2 months ago

Thats coll man!

Darren
Darren
4 years 1 month ago

Probably the best sound I’ve heard with 3xosc. I’ve been fiddling around with fl studio for about 6 years, and after following along with this, I feel like I’m actually learning! FEELS GOOD! 😀 Thanks!!

Paradox
Paradox
4 years 1 month ago

Hey man can you tell me where can i find/make the drumloops thing?

Jordan
Jordan
4 years 27 days ago

Thank You man… I’m just 16 and j’m trying to make some music, i got a lot from you. Thank you

jo
jo
4 years 24 days ago

your tutorials are unique.
All with good reasoning..
I am not jinx-ing it though.. Lol
Keep it up..
And can you show (tutorial) how to remix a song.. 🙂

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