House is a genre of electronic music that needs no introduction. Over the past decades, it spread so widely and gave birth to some timeless hits. One of the trademarks of the genre is the smooth synth chord generated by famous synthesizers like for example, Jupiter 8 by Roland. In the next tutorial, we will show you how to create an impressive-sounding House chord easily.
Learn How to Produce a House Chord
For the purpose of this tutorial, we have chosen to make House chord sound in VST called Diva by U-he. Nevertheless, there are many virtual synthesizers out there which you can use to do the same.
Let’s start by placing an instance of Diva on freshly made MIDI channel within SoundBridge: DAW.
The first step in creating the desired sound would be to enter the preset menu. Then, under the “TEMPLATES” folder choose “INIT-Jupe 8” preset. This will give us a clean start. You probably have noticed the “MASTER” knob on the top of Diva`s interface. We will pull it down to, let’s say 40, to get some headroom. Next important step would be to switch the voice circuit mode from “Poly” to “Legato” found in the bottom of the interface. This way, we can only play one note at the time.
Tweaking the Oscillators
After the initial settings, it is time to move to the actual making of the sound. We will start this process by creating a basic patch offset between two oscillators. To do so, we will tune the VCO 2 detune setting to 3 in order to create the 3rd interval.
This is how our basic House chord sounds so far.
~House Chord 1
Heading back to the oscillator section we can see a 4-way switch mode to “BOTH”. This switch assigns the pitch modulation section for each oscillator. By setting it to “BOTH,” we are setting both oscillators to be modulated by the same source. Staying with the oscillator section, we will click on the little arrow above envelope 2 (ENV 2) and from the dropdown menu select the “STACKINDEX” mode. By doing this, we can modulate the pitch of individual stack layers. By increasing the “STACK” knob to +7, we get to detune the three layers by 7 semitones producing a rich suspended chord.
Now we are getting somewhere. Let’s listen to the progress of our sound again.
~House Chord 2
To smooth the sound lets move to the filter section. In the filter section, we will pull down the “CUTOFF” and increase the “RES” a bit. Furthermore, to add some filter attack sent to the envelope, we will tune the “ENV 2” knob up to approximately 20%. Next, we will move to the ADSR section of the filter and tweak the attack and decay sliders a bit. Finally, let’s increase the velocity slider all the way up. This will make the envelope shorter, and velocity will react more to the filter. Let’s hear the progress again.
~House Chord 3
To finalize our sound, we will add a bit more stereo width by tweaking the “AMPLIFIER-PAN” section. We will change the pan mode assignment from initial “LFO 2” to “STACKINDEX” and finally turn the “PANMOD” knob up to 100. Finally, we will increase the “GLIDE” to get smoother transitions between notes.
Having set all these parameters, we can say that we have a decent sounding House chord. So, let’s hear a short sequence followed by some rhythm and bassline.
~House Chord 4 + Rhythm and Bassline
Download the project here.