This post is for music producers who are looking to learn or further their studies into the world of sound design. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or master of the subject, Syntorial has something to offer for every level of experience.
I believe this tool to be one of the most intuitive ways of learning sound design, it’s called ‘Syntorial’, from the website the developers describe it as:
“Syntorial is video game-like training software, which will teach you how to program synth patches by ear. With almost 200 lessons, combining video demonstrations with interactive challenges, you’ll get hands-on experience programming patches on a built-in soft synth, and learn everything you need to know to start making your own sounds with ease.”
I’d recommend you download the free demo to grasp the full extent of the software.
The reason I’m a fan of the software is because it’s teaching you how to recognise the properties of sounds with your ears. How great would it be to hear a synth in a track, go back to your software, and be able to recreate it? That’s what Synthorial teaches, learning by ear, as appose to just understanding the parameters contained within a typical synthesiser. Syntorial trains your ear to recognise how each control shapes and manipulates the sound. By the end of the program, you will be able to take the sounds you hear and re-create them, entirely by ear.
The way in which it does this is through its own Synthesiser named ‘Primer’. Upon starting the lessons, you’ll be a given a simple sound you’ll have to recreate using Primer. To make things easy, Syntorial shows you a couple of sections of the synth to begin with, as you work your way through the lessons, you’ll grandly start to unlock different parts of the synthesiser and be given more complex sounds to create. Once you complete the recreation, you’ll receive a score as well as shown which parts of Primer you didn’t need to use. I believe this is helpful as it helps fine-tune our skills of knowing which parts of a synthesiser we need to use to complete a specific task or create a sound.
The developers have recently added extra lessons for third-party synthesisers such as: Serum, Massive, Sylenth1, Z3TA+2, and Minimoog’s Voyager. I’m sure any music producer will find a familiar name in this list, I also believe them to be adding even more in the near future.
It’s worth mentioning that I am not affiliated, I have honestly just found this application invaluable for learning sound design, perhaps one of the best options we have available to us for mastering the subject.