An introduction to dubstep software
Hey! I have a hell of alot of people when they first decide they want to be a dubstep producer ask me :
What dubstep software do I use?
You could ask a hundred different producers that same question and you would likely get a hundred different answers. Everyone has their own setup and uses what works for them. In this article I’m going to give you some tips to what I and many other producers use as part of their dubstep software collection. However you should be prepared to try new things and experiment!
That being said let’s get started. To start with you will need a
Digital Audio Workstation, also known as a DAW
You will need a DAW. This is your hub. It will manage all your devices, allow you to perform some mixing and allow you to sequence and control your midi. It’s the single most important piece of software you will need for production.
There are many options available. Some more advanced than others.
I currently regularly use:
- Ableton Live
- Dub turbo
- Fl Studio
I find that Dub turbo is the simplest for beginners, with FL Studio coming in at a close second. Don’t be discouraged if on opening your new DAW you have the reaction “WTF, how do I use this shiz?!”. DAW’s do have a long learning curve. (Something that this site will hopefully solve.)
However once you understand the basics you will find your DAW incredibly useful and be banging out tunes in no time. Let me say right now that the actual DAW you pick doesn’t make a massive amount of difference. All of them rely on similar concepts. Any sound you can produce in one DAW you will be able to create in another DAW.
The only main difference in the different DAW’s is the workflow. The way certain tasks are carried out.
If I had to make a choice I would recommend Dub Turbo or Fl Studio, as they are the simplest for beginners to get started with. If you’re interested in Dub Turbo check out their site by clicking this link.
Once you have your Daw sorted you will need
An epic synthesiser
Synthesisers are essentially instruments you can program to make a specific sound. If you want to improve your dubstep production you will need a good synthesiser.
Again there are many options to go with however in this category there really is one clear winner.
This is native Instruments Massive. Massive is a synthesisers used by some of the biggest producers in the world. Its main talent is creating those huge gritty baseline you hear in dubstep these days. However like complicated DAW’s massive does have a large learning curve. Plus it’s fucking expensive.
There are a number of other options to try such as
- Albino 3. A great synth, used by Rusko heavily.
- DAW’s stock synths. Most Daw’s come with some stock synths that aren’t half bad. For example you have Reasons Thor, and Fl Studio’s Sytrus.
- Sylength. A great synth for analogue sounds. Great for big synth leads.
Learning synthesis is an important step to learning dubstep production. In another tutorial I will cover beginning synth design in some depth.
Picture taken from http://www.synthgear.com
You have your synths and your daw. Now what?
Well you will likely want
Some VST plug-ins
VST stands for virtual studio technology and are units of software that perform a certain task. You can add these VST’s to your DAW for additional functionality.
There are literally thousands of VST’s available online. Some free some paid.
For dubstep production and dubstep software you will need:
- A distortion plug-in. I strongly recommended Camel Phat. This is the distortion plug-in I use.
- Tube screamerA great tube plug-in for altering your sounds.
- Nexus Nexus essentially is a sound bank. It allows you to load a number of presets and drop them onto a track. Very useful for a quick lead or pad.
Well that’s it guys for my quick introduction to dubstep software. Any questions feel free to leave a comment below: