Homer Dudley initially developed vocoders at the Bell Labs in the 1930s, whilst he was experimenting with speech synthesis. Vocoders work using a modulator signal, like a voice or drum beat, and a carrier signal, such as a sustained pad or synth sound.
These signals are then split through a number of bandpass filters that combine and output the common frequency between the two signals. An iconic use of that robotic-vocal sound, created by a vocoder, can be found in Kraftwerk’s 1978 track, ‘The Robots‘.
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If you’re keen to learn more music production skills, much like this one, then be sure to check out Point Blank’s music production courses in Los Angeles. Alternatively, if you’re looking to study with Point Blank in London or online, they have a range of degree courses that specialize in music production and sound engineering. Check out their full roster here.
During the video, Dan demonstrates how PB’s new vocoder works, showing how you can transform a drum beat into a robotic vocal sound. He runs through the different parameters, revealing how you can get the most out of Point Blank’s free vocoder plugin.
The new Max for Live plugin by Dan Herbert is available exclusively from Point Blank – it will only cost you your email address. To find help on how to install the new Max for Live vocoder plugin, be sure to watch their previous Kick Drum Designer video.