The Ultimate Guide to Logic Pro X Instrument Plugins & VSTs
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- Certificate on Completion
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Master Every Logic Instrument - and Create Limitless Awesome Sounds.
In this course you will understand and master all of Logic Pro X’s virtual instrument plugins, synthesizers and VSTs. Starting from beginner level, you’ll learn the deep principles of synthesis and enhance your music by learning how to emulate the instrument, synth and drum sounds of your favorite artists, producers and sound effects designers - as well as a wealth of other music production skills.
Each of the many free instruments included in Logic is like it’s own piece of software. Some of these are small like the ESE, ESM and ESP - but others, like Alchemy Synthesiser & Sampler or Sculpture Modelling Synth provide so many parameters they can be overwhelming could have their own entire courses. Many people don’t even scratch the surface of what these instruments do and buy new ones without realising how powerful they are for composition and Sound Effects Design SFX for games and film
The Entire Logic Instruments Manual - In One Step-by-Step Video Course.
Many courses on Logic Pro go through the production, editing and mixing side of the program, but do not explain the instruments in depth. Understanding the concepts behind how these instruments work, let alone learning the interface can take months and it’s easy for even conscientious people to give up.
I’ve read the manual for you - literally. I’ve read every page of that that thing and condensed and rephrased that complex bible into a practical course that guides you through each instrument - backed with the concepts you need to understand each one and make it yours.
You could take this course and go through the whole thing, or use this as your production instrument encyclopedia - referring to it at will whenever you forget what a dial or knob does.
Which Logic Instruments Does the Course Cover?
Starting with a complete introduction to Synthesis mini-course, this course builds through the most simple instruments sequentially, right up to the most complex - covering everything you need to know about the following Logic Pro X instruments:
- Retro Synth
- ESX24 Sampler
- EVOC PS Vocoder
- Complete Alchemy Synthesiser Course
- Vintage Clav
- Vintage Electric Piano
- Vintage B3 Hammond Organ
- Logic Pro Drummer
- Drum Kit Designer
- Drum Machine Designer
- Ultrabeat Complete Course
In addition, I cover core concepts behind using these virtual instruments that allow you to use them exceedingly well. Concepts and guides to the controls of things like:
- Envelopes, Filters and Modulation
- Filters, Sends and EffectsPreparing your own samples and building your own sampled instrument
- Sequencers, Arpeggiators and Vector EnvelopesXY Pads, Midi Controllers (CCs and Via modulations
- Morphing, Macros and Global ControlsModelled instruments,
- Principles behind and getting the best out of the Logic DrummerPrinciples of Library Management and organising your library as a composer/producer
- Frequency Modulation (FM) Synthesis, Sync Synthesis and Virtual Analog DigitalGranular Synthesis, Spectral Synthesis and Formant
An entire course on Alchemy - The Ultimate Synthesizer and Sampler Instrument.
Alchemy (originally by Camel Audio) is one of the most complex and powerful synthesisers inside of Logic. It’s parameters could warrant an entire course in itself.
The course takes you through the entire interface and every dial and knob (barring the extended spectral synthesis parameters) - allowing you to turn Alchemy into an extremely powerful workhorse.
Sound Design and Effects Creation for Games & Film
The Logic Instruments course is also particularly useful for game composers and sound designers. Mastering all the interesting and detailed parameters in these sound effect creation VSTs can give you an endless sound palette to build wonderful and weird effects for your game design projects.
Who this course is for:
- Anyone who's felt overwhelmed, confused or frustrated with navigating and understanding Logic Instruments
- Those who want to get MORE out of their sounds and want to understand how to get exactly the sounds they are after in their drums & instruments
- Students should own Logic Pro X & have a working Mac computer
- Students should know how to navigate Logic Pro X and have a basic understanding of using the software already
- Understand and use every single button, dial and fader in every single Logic Pro X instrument
- Understand the core concepts of synthesis
- Edit and understand any patch that you open up in a Logic Pro X VST
- How to create your own sampled instruments. Build your own drum kit from scratch
- Build your own extensive patches within logic with ease and know immediately how to emulate the sounds you hear in commercial music
- Master modulation, the key to dynamic and musical sounds that sit well in your mix
- Create endless variations and super interesting drum grooves
- Resample Sounds Copyright Free (make sure you get legal advice first!)
- Understand advanced synthesis methods like: granular synthesis, additive synthesis, granular synthesis, spectral synthesis and formant
Introduction to the wealth of instruments that lie ahead of you in this course.
What is an instrument? This quick video deals with any confusion you might have about the difference between instruments and patches inside of your Logic library.
Quick Help Functionality with Instruments
Setting Up Controller Assignments
A quick clarification about using different keyboards when using this course and the button you need to 'reset' parameters in Logic.
Learn how to copy sounds that you hear on recordings and re-sample them to use across your keyboard. Please seek professional legal advice before releasing any tracks with the techniques described in this video.
Using a number of different tools in Logic, we explore how to transform and evolve the drummer's grooves into endless variations by building in subtle randomness that give a powerful and fresh sound to your tracks.
Using a hidden feature of Retro Synth we import our own voice and create our own glitchy-formant style synth - based on our own vowel sounds.
Have you ever found a parameter in an instrument that you wished you could modulate? Well in Logic, you can. In this video I show you how.
Using the EVOC PS synthesiser we turn a simple drum loop with no melodic or harmonic content into a chordal sound.
In part 1 of the introduction to synthesis in Logic Pro we look at Oscillation - the fundamental building block of any instrument, drum kit or synthesiser.
In part 2 of the introduction to synthesis in Logic Pro we look at filters - the secondary stage in subtractive synthesis - often the most common in synthesisers in Logic Pro X. Filters are a fundamental building block of any instrument, drum kit or synthesiser.
In part 3 of the introduction to synthesis in Logic Pro we look at envelopes - the control of a sound source over time. This is where the real shaping of our sounds - whether pluck, lead, bass, pad - get's formed. Think of it like the articulation of synthesis.
In part 4 of the introduction to synthesis in Logic Pro we look at modulation - the thing that gives sound motion.
In part 5 of the introduction to synthesis in Logic Pro we look at more advanced concepts that are relevant to your understanding of the topics and instruments deeper into the course.
In this video we go over the ESM, a powerful but simple monophonic bass synthesiser. This is great for powerful Moog style sounds that sit well under your mix..
The ESE is a fantastic but cheesy looking polyphonic synthesiser. It's great for pad sounds and chorus style synths. We go over every parameter in this chapter.
The 8-voice ES P (ES Poly) emulates classic polyphonic synthesizers of the 1980s. It is a versatile instrument that is capable of producing a huge variety of sounds. In this tutorial we go over the oscillation section – the top panel and encounter some new sliders on our output and filters.
In this chapter you build your own sounds using the fundamentals we've learned so far. I provide a course file with example sounds and also go over this in the video. This is where you first put your skills to the test.
Now we can start covering more complex synthesisers inside of logic. In this tutorial we go over the top panel of the ES1 which includes the dual oscillators, filter parameters, ADSR Via Vel and the Level via Vel - as well as global controls. We also encounter a new slider which allows us to set our velocity range - a control that will remain useful in the understanding of upcoming instruments.
In part two of the ES1 synthesiser tutorial, we go over the bottom panel which is primarily to do with modulation. We cover the low frequency oscillator, the router as well as the mod envelope and normal envelope.
We encounter a new type of synthesis in this instrument – frequency modulation.This can be a very complex one to get your head round and I explain the concepts from the ground up whilst teaching you the interface.
Retro synth is one of my favourite synthesisers in logic – it has a perfect balance of simplicity and functionality. You can quickly start creating lovely sounds without feeling overwhelmed by too many choices. In this chapter we go over the main page which is the analog settings. This includes:
- The oscillator
- effects including flange and phaser
- glide controls
- modulation including vibrato and LFO settings
- filter envelope
- amp envelope
Retro synth has three other pages which create our initial oscillation in different ways. Sync, Table & FM (frequency modulation) settings. We also take a look at generating our own waveforms using our voice or any other type of recording! This yields some really cool results (most of the time!). Some of the main new concepts covered are;
- Master and slave waveforms
- Modulator & carrier signals in FM
- Harmonic & Inharmonic Content
Now we start to get quite complex with the ES2. In this chapter gain a broad overview and then go deep into the oscillators and all of their controls. This includes:
- Tuning settings (Fine & Course)
- Digiwaves wave tables
- Fm synth parameters
- Octave doubling
- Glide & analog settings
- Bender range
In this chapter we go over the filter and effects inside of the ES2 including distortion, phasing, flanging & chorus.
The ES2 has a very extensive modulation capabilities including a monophonic LFO, a polyphonic LFO as well as three envelopes. Now we start to get really flexible with our modulation routings.
In case all of the modulation rantings we had so far wasn't enough, the ES2 has an advanced envelope generator called the vector envelope where you can design your envelopes exactly how you want and start looping them. This is also paired with the XY pad where we can set up really interesting modulation routings.
In this tutorial I give you an overview of the EXS24 and how a sampler works. I also show a short (& silly) example of creating your own sampled instruments from scratch.
Before we start creating our own instruments in the EXS24, you need to understand the front interface controls. Luckily this is quite similar to the ES2 - especially in terms of modulation routings. In this video we cover:
- Transpose & tuning settings
- Glide and the pitch via settings
- filter parameters
- output volume and key scaling
- modulation routings
- polyphonic LFO settings
- monophonic LFO settings
In this video we go over the instrument editor window and how to create your first patch from scratch - including a brief look at Zones & Groups in the EXS24 sampler. We also explain where all of these files are kept inside of your Mac folder system.
Groups inside of the EXS24 Sampler are vital to organising your samples and creating multilayered detailed instruments with velocity sensitivity.
The EXS24 Sampler can have multiple outputs which is more suitable for instruments like drum kits. In this video we look at the multi-output functionality that the EXS24 has and talk more about sample organisation in groups.
The EVOC Poly Synth is a vintage vocoder that's been in logic for as long as I can remember. It's somewhat outdated but still has some uses – in this video we go over all the parameters and look at how to actually start vocoding audio signals including vocals and drums.
Alchemy is logic's most extensive synthesiser with virtually all of the parameters we've seen from the other instruments so far. In this video I give you an overview and explain just how extensive it is and talk about the philosophy of whether you should even use the other instruments or not.
In this video we talk about the browse and simple views to start off our journey in alchemy. The browser window has great functionality for searching through the massive library of alchemy patches, and the simple view acts as macro controls over the more advanced features deeper inside of the instrument. It's a great starting point for any beginner.
The advanced view can look pretty scary when you first look at it. But on closer inspection, it's really divided into two simple sections – sources and modulation.
In this video we go over these two concepts from a high level so that in the following videos we can really dive into the nitty-gritty details of sound sources and all the different types of modulation inside of the alchemy synthesizer.
The filters and sends inside of alchemy can be a bit confusing in terms of their signal flow. In this episode I try to explain incredibly clearly how it all works and show examples of routing voices to different filters and effects in different ways.
We also go over the voices section and cover familiar territory but now in this new instrument.
The extensive modulation inside of alchemy is one of the most exciting things about the instrument. Virtually every single knob and dial on this instrument can be modulated by virtually anything – in this video we go over the following:
- the modulation assignments panel
- the low frequency oscillator
- the AHDSR
- the MSEG
- the sequencer
- the MOD map
The MSEG is a little bit like our vector envelope from the ES2 but, in my opinion, much more flexible and easy-to-use. It's an incredibly powerful and flexible modulation source which allows you to draw some really interesting effects on to any target.
If you've ever used an arpeggio to before, the sequencer will be quite familiar to you – however we are not arpeggiating notes but sequencing targets with our modulation. Dive into the video to find out what I'm on about and how to use the Alchemy Sequencer Modulation.
When you first learn about the mod map, it's a bit strange. It's called a "secondary modulation source" and can be quite useful for controlling things like velocity response curves and adjusting your existing modulation behaviour. It's pretty advanced but might be useful to you so dive in and find out all about how the mod map inside of Alchemy works.
Arpeggiators are just loads of fun and the alchemy arpeggiator has some pretty extensive functionality as well as the ability to save and generate lots and lots of different patterns. In this video we look at step mode and multimode as well as all of the dials including split mode, rate, swing, latch, length and octave.
If what we've gone over so far wasn't enough – Alchemy ships with its own suite of effects that you can rout and also modulate in any way you want. This is where you put the sheen and shine on your patches and start mangling your sounds beyond recognition! In this video we go over effects in alchemy such as:
- Bass Enhancer
- Phat compressor
- Vintage compressor
- Mod FX
- Convolution reverb
Library management is actually a really important thing is a composer and sound designer – you need to be able to recall and find your sounds quickly in a session and alchemy is built with lots of features for doing this. In this video I go over how to use things such as user tags, attributes, sorting and also whether or not you should use Alchemy's built-in library management feature or logic's.
Believe it or not, there is more… And in this video I talk about whether you should even dive into the next section whether you can skip it. Everything we've learnt so far is enough to be going on with but if you're interested in sampling and advanced sampling then its possible you may want to go onto the next section.
Before we start actually using the sampling capabilities in alchemy I talk about how to actually prepare your own samples and where to get them from. Included in the course files are prepared samples which you should have downloaded by now. In this video we talk about how to cut them up and get them ready for your session.
Introduction to sculpture
Objects and material
Modulation in Sculpture
MIDI controllers, morph and envelope recording
Vintage Electric Piano
Vintage B3 Hammond Organ Part 1: Main Window
Vintage B3 Hammond Organ Part 2: Rotor Cabinet
Vintage B3 Hammond Organ Part 3: Options
Vintage B3 Hammond Organ Part 4: Effects & Expert View
Drum kits vs drummers
Drum kit designer
Drum machine designer
Ultrabeat Part 1: Overview & Assignments Panel
Ultrabeat Part 2: Synthesizer Window
Ultrabeat Part 3: Oscillator Types
Ultrabeat Part 4: Modulation
Ultrabeat Part 5: Sequencer