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Let's take a look at this Carrier oscillator and how it works. So the Carrier oscillator is a bit different than some of the oscillators we have seen in the other synths, just because it only generates sine waves. So if I play a note on here, we can see that the waveform is the sine waveform. If we look on this Analyzer, there's really only one component of the sound, just the fundamental frequency. So I'm playing an A note to 220 hertz, that's really it. If you look at other types of waveforms, like a sawtooth waveform, you see a whole lot of other harmonic components to the sound.
The sine waveform is pretty characterless, but the good thing is that the Modulation oscillator that they call the Modulator, that's what's going to be creating the texture. So it's the modulation between this Modulator and Carrier that's going to create the shape of the sound. So it's okay that this Carrier oscillator only generates sine waves. One thing that's interesting about it is the tuning aspect of this Carrier oscillator. It doesn't transpose in semitones. So for example, when I adjust this knob here-- (music playing) --those are much bigger than semitones, right? So it's tuning based on the harmonic series.
So it's integer relationships between the note we're playing. So integer means whole numbers. So here is just the basic note. I'm playing an A. I'm going to set this to the second harmonic. It's an A in octave higher. When I set it to the third harmonic it's an octave and a fifth. So the fourth harmonic it's two octaves, and so on. (music playing) We tune it with the harmonic series instead of semitones, and I'll get into that more when we look at the Modulator--the reasoning behind that.
We've also got a Fine-Tuning control here where we can offset the tuning in cents, so by very small amounts. If I want to reset this back to its neutral position, I can just click on this O right here, or I can Option+Click. The last control on the Carrier oscillator is this Fixed control. This is going to separate the note that I am playing on the keyboard from the actual pitch that we are hearing. If I engage Fixed what's going to happen is I play notes on the keyboard, and they are all generating the same frequency.
This is a really low frequency right here. So I'm going to change the harmonic. (music playing) I can even go higher than that. (music playing) So I'm playing a chromatic scale on the keyboard now, but notice it doesn't sound very chromatic, does it? That's because it doesn't matter what I play on the keyboard, it's just going to play that fixed frequency, so that's what this Fixed mode does. You just set the harmonic and it just plays that constant note. And we will understand the utility and the reasoning behind that more when we look at this Modulator.
So with that, let's take a look at this modulation oscillator, the Modulator.
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