Music™: Advanced Techniques

Basic techniques first(?)
Basic techniques first(?)
Basic techniques first(?)
Whilst currently I decided to first document all advanced stuff, I still have something for beginners!
Review & tutorial video from "ChrisLody", telling you basics from the start!
(Reposting from main page)
Voiceless video featuring DJ Omnimaga making trance track from scratch!
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Make use of built-in M2K help functionality: Press "O" and scroll to the very end to find it!
Official Music2000 Manual - Does fairly well explanation of main elements!
GLITCHES: INTRO
GLITCHES: INTRO
GLITCHES: INTRO
I know it might be a discouraging subject to start off with, but I wanted to mention it early to help protect your songs!
I did invest a lot of time into researching glitches as I believe that musicians' tools must be reliable - this chapter will help you keep it that way!
In total, Glitches can be summed to 4 things:
-Memory Leaks; -Rare save corruption; -Problematic Note Parameter Modifying; -Risky external/modified samples;
-Memory Leaks; -Rare save corruption; -Problematic Note Parameter Modifying; -Risky external/modified samples;
You can recognize them by unpredictable incorrect behaviour either straight away or when reloading project back - most are easily fixable thankfully! All of them have some kind of random chance happening: some might never see or feel them, some might encounter them very often.
As scary as they might sound, they are definitely avoidable once you learn about them more!
I'm splitting the chapter into a few sections as to not overwhelm users with those: the crucial knowledge is in this chapter and also "Safe workflow". Detailed explanation is also important to know, so learn about it whenever you feel ready for it!
Glitches: Details
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(last chapter of this page!)
safe workflow
safe workflow
safe workflow
Here's my personal workflow when using Music 2000, which I consider pretty safe and comfortable enough; Starting off, I emulate Music 2000 - That lets me use savestates, easily exchange & backup memory cards, or even rewind time in critical moments; A lot of problems seem to be also solved by simply using CD disk image (best if verified as best dump), no CD drive-related problems, or scratched disk; My songmaking process looks like this:
safe
backup
savestates
rewind
image
verified
short sessions
-I do short sessions of music making which is then frequently saved; -I keep few versions of the project rather than overwriting the same only one in case current save gets glitchy; -After saving, I fully restart the Playstation, then reload the save; -Once song is loaded, I double-check if whole songs plays as it should;
(around 20-40m, no more than 1h)
few versions
(this makes sure I got my memory cleaned properly)
fully restart
(hold fastforward button toget back to menu much quicker = reliable way!)
double-check
I also recommend to savestate just before saving, project as extra backup whenever terrible save glitch happens, so you can reload and maybe try saving again!)
quirks and features
quirks and features
quirks and features
Inside riffs M2K provides us per-note effects, though some also use more voices despite having just one note!
That said, it's extremely easy to max out 24 channels before you could notice, easily cutting off notes! I created tables below so you know how much each effect takes up channel space!
To collect precise information below I used Duckstation's "Debug" -> "Show SPU State" for very informative PS1 channel overview!
._____________CHORDS_____________ |[NAME]---[_NOTES_]---[_VOICES_]| |Blue A - 0,3,7,9 - (4 voices)| |Blue B - 0,3,7,8 - -||- | |Held A - 0,5,7 - (3 voices)| |Held B - 0,2,7 - -||- | | Major - 0,4,7 - -||- | | Minor - 0,3,7 - -||- | |Octave - 0,-12 - (2 voices)| |-------------------------------|
CHORDS
ECHO
.[ECHO]-[VOICES]. | B L 8 - 5 | | FIVE - 4 | | Guitar - 6 ! | | M L 4 - 7! | | M S 4 - 3 | | Octave - 4 | | R L 8 - 8!! | | Ring - 5 | | Room - 2 | | S L 8 - 7! | | S S 8 - 3 | | Seven - 4 | |Triplets - 7! | |---------------|
Chords might use more voices if previous chord hasn't faded out yet; consider making chords manually!
ONE-SHOT
.___LIST_OF_ONE-SHOT_EFFECTS____. |[TYPE]---[_NAME_]----[_VOICES_]| |CHORUS - GUITAR 1 - (+2 voices)| |CHORUS - ROOM - - -||- | |CHORUS - STEREO - (+4!voices)| |PHASE - Octave - (+3 voices)| |PHASE - Stereo - - (+4!voices)| |PHASE - all other - (+1 voice )| | REVERB - - all - - -||- | |SPECIAL - others - -||- | |SPECIAL - WIDE - - (+2 voices)| |SPECIAL - AUTOPAN - -||- | |-------------------------------|
If you got effects above enabled, you probably noticed how selecting group of riffs doesn't play them correctly, that's because these are played ffrom the last track at the very bottom of the screen! For solo-ing to work with effect, you'd have to select it like this!
(e.g. put any chord effect on a note, then in Track View select that riff, and play it)
-->
phases
glitchy
Some effects (especially phases) will sound glitchy: weird solution is to turn down riff volume by 1-3 to see if sound comes back to normal!
--Note length / BPM has no influence over Echo amounts! --In voice-tight situations, try making your echo manually! --Reverb buffer does not occupy voices! --Retriggering doesn't consume extra voices!
-----[OTHERS:]-----
-----[OTHERS:]-----
Sometimes selections bigger than screen will make it hard to see where to paste - In such cases I usually try to start selection from opposite end
Sometimes selections bigger than screen will make it hard to see where to paste - In such cases I usually try to start selection from opposite end
Sometimes selections bigger than screen will make it hard to see where to paste - In such cases I usually try to start selection from opposite end
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
When making slides, use no-trigger notes - not interrupting previous note, guaranteed to startsliding smoothly!
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Envelopes can adjust scale allowing to make them deeper/longer as u wish! Whichever scale u will increase, remember to move points when u scale!
From left to right numbers under graph mean: -Total amount of points on the graph; -current Point number; -Position on the graph; -Pitch Value; -X scale size; -Y scale size;
(000 = left, 255 = right)
(High value = Point at the top)
Example: Making Transient
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Wondered what "-> -> 3" stands for?
This makes the triggers fit triplet-style riffs!
(Last 2 fields become unavailable: 8 -> 6 )
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"Insert File" enables you to combine multiple songs together - Next song gonna be inserted at the cursor position (pushing any riffs already under the cursor to the right, if there are any!
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Since built-in help menu is incorrect about what each meter is responsible for, here's actually what each bar represents, from left to right:
Bar 1 (Blue): Sound memory taken by the currently loaded samples; Bar 2 (Light Blue): Console memory used by song and video data; Bar 3 (Red): Video memory used by the loaded clips; Bar 4 (Pink): Current MEMORY CARD usage, to show u if u can save!;
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LAYER-DISTORTION
LAYER-DISTORTION
LAYER-DISTORTION
(watch the volume though!)
(watch the volume though!)
If you layer riff with itself (like place same riff directly under 1st one, so 2 play at the same time) You will hear it play much louder. What if we try more?
When you layer much more of the same riffs together you'll hear them being pretty distorted, cutting off volume of other instruments, in a sidechain-like style!
It works amazingly well on Kicks, and bassy instruments!
for some already loud instruments like "Distortion" Kick, you'd only need 2 instances at once to trigger effect!
Extreme example here!
7th octave Exploit
7th octave Exploit
7th octave Exploit
You're fully able to place notes beyond 6 octaves! Octave 7 has 8.5 usable pitches!
(C to G will sound as expected, but G# is just slightly sharper G - all notes after G# will sound exactly same!)
-----HERE'S PROCESS STEP BY STEP-----
-Place note on the 6th octave -Move your cursor down to 5th octave -Copy the note using "SELECT" button -Cancel the pasting motion -Scroll cursor on 6th octave -Press "O" to open up menu -Select "Paste copied notes"
If done correctly, the note will be visually glitched (but octave number will display the correct number!)
copying the notes while being octave lower
All we do here is copying the notes while being octave lower, then moving cursor octave higher, notes get correctly transposed regarding cursor position!
(So even placed note on octave 2, then copy it from octave 1 AND "paste copied notes" on octave 6 will work!)
To move around glitched notes beyond 6th octave you gotta copy and paste them around using "SELECT"
Be careful! If you happen to overwrite it or paste it in normal 6th octave range, you cannot freely move this note around and you gotta use exploit again!
For some reason you can paste glitched notes up to 22th octave - D# being the last available note there - any pasted notes beyond that will appear as lowest octave 1 notes!
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AM/PM guide
AM/PM guide
AM/PM guide
[HOW TO USE?]
-Inside riff press "O" and look for "ADD AM CHANNEL" - this will make red track appear in the riff; -On RED track put down note on same octave or below; -Select notes of blue track and enable modulation in each note;
Otherwise effect will be skipped)
If done correctly, you should hear the sample being affected by another sample! (it works best on non harmonic rich instruments like alto sax as mod!)
(it's gonna be probably bassier/have more vibrato)
-----[DEFINITIONS]-----
In this case Blue track getting affected will be called "carrier", because it carries the sound; Red track will be called "modulator", because it affects the original sound!
-->
-->
[MODULATOR]-->[CARRIER]-->[OUTPUT]
-----Not AM, but actually PM!-----
Not AM, but actually PM!
AM stands for Amplitude Modulation, where modulator affects carrier using volume only.
In M2K If we put modulating note very low, we will hear effect similar to really strong slow vibrato and nothing affecting the volume itself.
This points out that no Amplitude Modulation takes place and what indeed happens is Pitch Modulation. (PM)
(additional evidence for that can be found in the soundchip itself - Pitch Modulation is one of the effects found there!) Exact same effect can be found on SNES!
Such sound technique was used for making mostly random noise-ich SFX around games, Final Fantasy been using it as bonfire sound!
-USED PARAMETERS/TIPS-
Modulator affects Carrier by: -Mute; -Pitch slide; -Volume*; -Retriggers; -Vibrato; -Note sample start; -Note pitch; NOT BY: -Envelope; -Panning; -Effects;
*we can hear the modulator just like another track - even reverb if there's volume! in this case treat like normal track AND modulator!
-----Quirks-----
--Carrier MUST have the modulation option on per note - if you turn it off, modulation still carries on in the background) --Every time you place new: Modulator note = Volume goes to 0; Carrier note = Synth modulation is off; --Selecting all notes to edit one or another track can ruin the other! (when u got them stacked on single key)
If you group edited CARRIER notes, MODULATOR notes might copy parameters over and will stay dead, even though should modulate - delete and place new one!
(Remember: It's about the area selected, not the notes selected!)
--GLITCH
--GLITCH: Jam mode starts losing notes and patterns when playing riff with PM effect inside!
PM doesn't work with following effects:
--GLITCH: When making new riff first note you place is with PMmod turned on, regardless if we enabled PM channel in the riff - upon reentering riff the notes are dead silent. -FIX: leave & delete riff, make sure in another riff that your last note is not PM'd
--GLITCH:
CHORUS - GUITAR 1; ECHO - GUITAR 1; ECHO - R L 8; ECHO - ROOM; REVERB - MIX HI SPECIAL - AUTOPAN; SPECIAL - WIDE;
(V QUIET)
-For best group editing press "o" --> "Change riff channel mutes": this way you can hide one or the other channel and safely edit without consequences on the other! Global playback with perform well but to hear/edit the turned off track in riff you gotta re-enable it same way!
-----USECASE-----
1. Phase-modulating bass (modulator on same octave or 1 below, slightly detuned); 2. "Bringing highs" to low-sample rate samples; 3. Melodically ( done by placing modulator on different note than used by carrier) 4. Second voice (using volume you can mix in the actual sound of sample used as modulator, possibly mixing it with the carrier!);
Example + Pitch Envelope
(try using Flute c3 11kHz as modulator on 6-7th octave!)
Example 2 Bird SFX
Example 1 Drum break
Depending on the modulator/carrier relation, you should be able to find at least 2-5 notes that are pretty good);
Example 1
Example 2
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Though PM channel grey's out any effects, I managed to put some on the note playing there thanks to last note I touched! Doesn't affect carrier but sounds cool on Modulator with volume on!
Example of that here!
MEMCARDS
MEMCARDS
MEMCARDS
Here's few memory card filled with projects: 1 memcard showcasing sampling song by Decon Theed; 1 memcard with powerful songs by DJ Omnimaga; 2 memcards from me: one with Music1 tracks, other one is very recent and involves M2K; Tracks are being provided only for educational purpose!
Glitches: Details
Glitches: Details
Glitches: Details
Glitches: Details
=====Memory Leaks; (sporadic)
Memory is not unloaded properly during normal usage. Things like previewing samples, copying objects, riffs, or even previous song can accumulate: This can potentially throw many errors when trying to continue working on the project, or crashing the software!
(No consistent factors noticed, Might as well be "bad luck"!)
(No consistent factors noticed, Might as well be "bad luck"!)
-----Solution/Prevention/Ideas:
-Save your project on memory card; -Restart console (100% safe) OR "Options" -> "Clear All"; -Reload your song again! -You should avoid maxing out sample memory; -Maybe increasing RAM in Duckstation can help?
-Save your project on memory card; -Restart console (100% safe) OR "Options" -> "Clear All"; -Reload your song again! -You should avoid maxing out sample memory; -Maybe increasing RAM in Duckstation can help?
=====Problematic Note Parameter;
=====Problematic Note Parameter;
Glitches happening on notes previously edited often. Could be a single note, or entire group of them! Things like "volume", "panning", and "tuning" are likely to be messed up during reload - Most likely to happen when group editing , but not exclusive!
-----Solution/Prevention/Ideas:
-try to copy around notes as much as possible; -check your project after saving; -delete glitched notes and save again!
=====Save Corruption; (quite rare)
=====Save Corruption; (quite rare)
Reloaded song isn't in the same state as when saved. 1-2 riffs that sound weird or note gets stuck or have no sound - it can be 1 note, or few. It might be easily fixable, sometimes tricky.
(Here's track with riff that has single broken note, when you access riff editor it crashes software - This can be fixed by splitting riff and cutting off the part with glitched note!)
-----Solution/Prevention/Ideas:
LINK SOON
-Save moderately often; -Always keep backup of the project (never overwrite same one on mem-card!); -You should savestate often;
=====Risky external/modified samples;
- Working with samples is sometimes risky - often there's chance your sound will not load, or become glitched (could be completely or slightly corrupted). It probably depends on the memory you got, but we couldnt identify any relable factors involved - I had M2K freeze after playing with sample for a while, but nothing savestates or rewind cannot fix!
-----Solution/Prevention/Ideas:
-Save often; -Follow glitch-free workflow/guide; -Pray; -... I'm repeating myself, ain't I?
As you can also notice, all those glitches are related in a way: avoiding one sometimes also means avoiding another! Hope this overview gives you more idea about what's going wrong!
MAIN INFU PAGE
Decompiling PS1
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How to heavily crash M2K/MG1: