Join Brian Trifon for an in-depth discussion in this video Understanding the Body EQ, part of Virtual Instruments in Logic Pro.
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So our sound started over here where we have the objects exciting the string and disturbing the vibrations of the string. From there, the Pickups pick up the sound and the signal goes to the Amplifier Envelope, where we shape the volume of the sound. From there, it goes to the Waveshaper. That's where we can add in harmonics and saturate the sound. From there the signal goes down to the Filter, and that's where we cut out certain frequencies and filter. And then we enter the post- processing section of Sculpture. So the first unit of that was the delay.
So the delay applied to all voices, and we can add an echo. And from there the sound goes down to the Body EQ, which is the second part of the post-processing features of Sculpture. So the Body EQ can model the resonant characteristics of a number of acoustic instruments. So what I'm going to do is go ahead and turn on this Body EQ, and you can see right now we have three bands. We have Low, Mid, and High. And so right now this is just kind of a standard EQ. So if I adjust the Low frequency-- (music playing) --you can see it's a low shelf, so that can boost the low frequencies or I can attenuate them or bring them down.
Now the Mid band is a peak, so I can adjust this peak or turn it into a notch and I can adjust the range of it with this Mid frequency slider up here. So it's kind of like a parametric EQ. So I'll set that back to its default setting by Option+Clicking. And then I have the High shelf EQ here, so I can boost the high frequencies or attenuate or bring down high frequencies, and we could set that back to its default.
So if we take a look down here, we've got this Model menu. So in here is where I have the EQ curves of a number of different instruments. So I'll just choose one of these. Let's choose Mandolin. So you can see over here, we have the EQ model of the resonant characteristics of a mandolin. So notice that the names of the controls have changed too. So we have Formant Intensity, so that's going to adjust the intensity of the harmonics of the sound. (music playing) So I can bring those down or invert the intensity of it so it's focused on other aspects of the sound.
I can also shift the formants of the sound, so this is shifting the harmonics. (music playing) So I'll increase the intensity. We'll be able to hear that a little better. (music playing) Here I'm shifting where the harmonics are happening in the spectrum. And then over here we can stretch the formants as well, so this is going to stretch the spacing between the harmonics. So if I increase the amount, the harmonics or formants are going to be further apart. If I decrease it, they'll be closer together.
Another way we can use this Body EQ is just dragging on the image here. So when I do that, I'm adjusting multiple parameters at once. This allows me to play and shape the sound in a very intuitive kind of way. Another thing you'll notice is that right above this image here, we've got the Fine Structure Control. So remember when we had this in the three-band EQ, the Mid, Low, and High, this was the Mid frequency. When we have a different model, this is the Fine Structure control. So this is the resolution of the EQ model of the mandolin.
So when I adjust this and I move this to the right, I'm going to get a more accurate representation of the mandolin resonances. And if I decrease this, you can see it's more of a simplified EQ curve. (music playing) So take note that when you have Fine Structure set all the way to full, it's going to use a little bit more CPU, so beware of that if you're running out of CPU horsepower. So if we check out some of these other models here, we can see that there's number of different ones. We've got Cello, Bass Flute, Western Guitar.
So maybe let's do something that's a bit unconventional. What I want to do is change our setting, in terms of the object, to a Bow articulation, and then I want to change our model to a Banjo. So I want to create a bowed banjo sound, so let's see what I can do with that. So let me just adjust the Object parameter first. In order to get that set right, I don't want to hear the Body EQ, so I'm going to turn it off by pressing the Body EQ On/Off button. So I'm going to adjust my bowing sound. (music playing) So I might move the Object 1, the bow, on the string to somewhere different.
And I'm going to adjust a couple parameters here-- (music playing) --in terms of the material of the string. (music playing) There we go! I think that sounds good. And so I'm going to turn back on the Body EQ and so now we've got a bowed banjo. (music playing) So I can adjust the intensity of this or I can just graphically adjust it here. And so maybe if that doesn't sound right, then I can try a different resonant model.
So we can do perhaps Bass Flute, so let's hear what that sounds like. (music playing) You can hear that that's quite different from the mandolin and from the banjo ones that we looked at before. So you could really change the sound depending on what your Body EQ setting is. So right above the Body EQ, you can see that we have the Level control. So this is just a volume knob basically for the whole Sculpture instrument. And next to that we have the Level Limiter. So this is important in terms of the output of the sound, because it's very easy to clip Sculpture, especially when you have a lot of interactions going on in wave shaping. The volume can really build up quickly.
So I've got a couple different Level Limiter modes. I can have it in off mode where it's not affecting anything, or in mono mode where it's going to sum all the voices' signals and then we have a dynamic limiter that's applied to all voices. Or I can have it in poly mode. So what this means is that the limiter is going to be applied to each voice independently. And then last but not least, we have Both mode where it's going to be polyphonically limited first and then that summed signal is going to be monophonically limited. So it's the combination of the mono and poly limiters together.
And that helps prevent clipping and reduce the dynamic range a little bit. (music playing) So now that we've explored how to model the resonant characteristics of a number of acoustic instruments of the Body EQ and adjust the volume of the sound with the Level control and limit the dynamics with the Level Limiter, in the next video, let's explore how we can add movement and modulation of the sound with the LFOs in Jitter Generator.
Virtual Instruments with Logic Pro will be updating on a monthly basis, eventually covering all the virtual instruments in the application. Look for the latest movies here and on the lynda.com blog.
- Setting up Logic Pro for using virtual instruments
- Configuring MIDI controllers
- Composing with virtual instruments envelopes
- Tweaking the overdrive and chorus
- Creating movement with LFOs (Low Frequency Oscillators)
- Understanding FM synthesis basics
- Changing the timbre and shifting the formants of the vocoder
- Constructing custom sampler kits
- Exploring the tonewheel organ, electric piano, and Ultrabeat drum synthesizer