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AAA Music | 24 September 2020

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What Are Sample Packs And How Can You Make Use Of Them?

| On 12, Aug 2020

A sample pack is a collection of sounds. It is composed of loops and one-shot sounds. A loop is a short section of sound in a track that is continuously repeated. The one-shot sample consists of all elements of digital music that are not looped. Examples of one-short samples include orchestra hits, drum sounds, and the short musical phrases initiated through the MIDI controller. The sample packs are valuable as music producers apply them to start their productions or as an inspiration to venture into a new genre. Thus, you cannot ignore the amazing benefits of sample packs, whether you are an aspiring or an established music engineer. All you need is the know-how on the best practices you can employ to make use of sample packs. Here is a detailed guide for how you can use sample packs.

Use Effects to Alter the Samples

You can add a stamp to your samples by shaping them with sound effects such as tremolo, reverb, and delay. Besides personalizing the sample, the sound effects will make it compatible with the subject track and avoid the colliding sound characters between the track and the sample pack. All you need is to load your samples into your digital audio workstation (DAW) and use your most preferred plugins to add simple effects that will give your sample a tweak.

Apply Custom Kits to Layer Your Samples

Most sample packs make a close reflection of the kind of sound you wish to have for your music but not the perfect sound. Thus, you need to add your custom settings to the sample characters to make them unique and perfect. This is where layering comes in handy. In line with the experts of this website, you can achieve the real percussive patterns and melodic experience by layering your samples. The commonly used plugins for layering include NI Battery and Ableton’s impulse. To apply the custom kits, layer multiple kicks over each other to punch the sound. For instance, you can take a sample with a body, one with a punch, and another with a robust low end and see how they will offset one another. 

Workout the Loops and Single Hits

According to experts, quality sample packs consist of loops, one-shot samples, and single hits. Loops are commonly composed of synth and bass and are accompanied by keys and beats per minute (BPM), which can be modified. However, having a sample with a loop and all the other elements does not perfect it for your song. Edit your loops using tools like DAW and the sampling hardware. Chop and rearrange your loops to come up with unique ones. Alternatively, you can create new sequences from multiple loops sharing the same key or BPM.

Resample

Most producers prefer combining the resampling with the effects of the Musical Instrument Digital Interface while manipulating sample packs. Such preference is attributed to the fact that resampling allows you to regulate the sample sections that would receive the effect. It also offers the most convenient way of owning samples. Use the following steps to resample your sample:

  • Place a MIDI and audio track on both sides of your workstation (DAW)
  • Shift the input from audio track to resampling
  • Hold the command/control to arm the recording on both the audio track and MIDI

The resulting audio will contain all the sound from the playback and the effects thereof. You can further work on the new audio using editing tools and audio effects.

Filter the Samples

Not all details of the samples will add value to your tracks/mix. Some sound elements may render the mix muddy. Filtering your samples will help you eliminate the extra noise, pops, and clicks to attain the most optimal frequency. It will help you concentrate on the crucial sections of the sample, thus avoiding collision of sounds between your track and sample sounds. The most effective way to filter the samples is to subject them to low and high pass filters to eliminate low and high-end frequencies that are unwanted in the mix. Eliminating fluffs in the sample will guarantee you nothing but quality output.

Sample packs go beyond searching, downloading, dragging and dropping audios, and sorting them into the track. You need to make them your own by adding custom alterations by filtering, layering, resampling, and the addition of sound effects. You also need to chop the loops and single hit to give the sample some originality. If you are just setting foot into the engineering field for music, you can get inspiration from the high-end and royalty-free sounds available on online sites. Use them as a stepping stone from where you will do wonders in sound engineering.