Tag Archives: sampling

Vorpal Sounds: Sound design tutorial using CDP

Part 1 of this post is here. And my introduction to CDP.

Ok, let’s jump right into it. First of all we need 2 sounds. The tricky part about this process is trying out different sound combinations and seeing what works. The most important variable seems to be the pitch of the samples as transposing them up & down influences the end result quite a bit. I’m gonna use 2 different samples here but a sample can also be convolved with itself and that often gives useful results too. Somewhat like a more mellow version of the sound. Anyhow, the first sample I’m using is just some random snippet from an old record:

Again in a random manner, I’ve decided to transpose it down 6 semitones. I’m using CDP’s “modify speed” process. Please note that in order this to work you have to use CDP or re-render your transposed sample as CDP won’t care if you repitch it “live” inside Renoise.

The result isn’t surprising:

For the second sound, I’ve picked something from my own library. It’s just an ambient sample also done with CDP probably.

I did a couple tries and it sounded a little better in the final process if I transposed this one up 1 semitone. Here is what I did.

And it sounds like it’s… pitched up a semitone:

At this point using fastconv is pretty simple. You just select the samples to combine and click process. A rather important note: I’ve maximized the ambient sample before I started processing, as fastconv sometimes returns silent results on quieter samples. You also need to have both files at the same bit depth. My samples are arranged like this in Renoise, and they are both 44.1k & 16 bit.

And finally CDP window. I haven’t got many useful timbres using the “X” and “-f” parameters generally but anything can happen in the right moment in CDP, so don’t rule them out:

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The resulting sound:

It’s quite organic and abstract, a blend of both sounds in the beginning phase but has a nice unexpected twist near the end. While this surely isn’t the most exciting or advanced sound you can accomplish using CDP, it does the job for this very first tutorial and I’d say it could work in a tune with a little bit of editing/sequencing and maybe a couple of FX. Besides, there’s so much more to try (repitching, reversing, trimming different parts of the samples, adding other processes or effects) before you combine sounds, it’s almost impossible to get something that you wouldn’t like, even keeping it basic.

So that’s all. Being my first attempt, preparing this post took way too much time and effort (mainly Soundcloud driving me insane), and I’m not sure if I’ve presented it in the best way possible so please let me know what you think in comments or by email.

Thank you for reading, bye!


CDP (and Renoise)

I’m obsessed with CDP (Composer’s Desktop Project). Check it out here. It’s a quite geeky sound design tool. I’ll admit I don’t really understand much of the technology behind it. There are spectral processes, some granular ones and others that I’m not very familiar with. Some of them are more straightforward like your usual filters etc. But even those have interesting twists. After years of development the owners generously decided to make it free. And trust me, it’s like acquiring a super secret hi tech lab for free. Kudos to the developers.

I suppose I’ve just scratched the surface of it yet but I can’t imagine making any sound design without it any more. There are tons of different processes and sometimes even the smallest parameter tweak will make a huge difference. And when you combine everything with everything… It’s endless.

So if you checked their website out you were probably put off by the 90’s atmosphere… Fear not! The good people at the Renoise forum made it possible for all of us to use this goodness just by a click or two. It could take a while to set up and you will probably need to get your hands dirty doing some troubleshooting but it will be worth every second.

Here’s the key to unlocking a new world of sounds:


If you don’t have Renoise yet, grab the demo here. Not sure about the demo restrictions but a license is dead cheap anyway. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the tracker layout. It isn’t as bad as it looks. Feel free to ask me or the Renoise forum for help. Just do whatever it takes to get that CDP tool going!

I’ll probably be talking about it a lot in the future and I’ll share some sounds I’ve made with it. So I thought an introductory post could be helpful.

Have a good one.