Holy Bot

Bedroom music production, gaming and random shit


February 2013

The Haas Effect

So you wanna add some depth and space to your music and have some instruments stand out in the mix? Fine.

An old method is to wire a psychoacoustic effect called Haas. (If you’re interested, you can read more on Wikipedia about how this phenomena works.)

To do this you need to electronically delay the sound signal with a device of sorts (physical or a DAW plugin.) The concept is to slightly delay the signal (approximately 5-35 ms) and play it back with the original sound source. To further widen the effect, you should pan the original signal hard to the left and the delayed hard to the right. Basically, you could follow these steps:

  1. Split the incoming left and right sound signals.
  2. Route one of the split left channels (the original sound signal) back to main left output.
  3. Connect one of the split output pairs (left and right) to a delay device.
  4. Route the left output of the delay to main right output (leave the right output of the delay disconnected).

Now you can adjust the amount of the Haas effect with the delay time up to 35 ms. Also adjust the width with the dry/wet knob on the delay device.

You can as well enhance the effect with EQ, by raising the higher frequencies to the right and the lower in the left. Additionally, try out some reverbs to get a different, deeper sound.


Return of the Ox

Cannibal Ox is calling on fans to help finish their sophomore album. The duo has launched a Kickstarter campaign for this. The follow-up is meant to be released on Iron Galaxy Clik Records.

The Cold Vein from 2001 is one of my favorite albums of all time (any genre). In short, Vast Aire and Vordul Mega just killed it. The album was produced by El-P and released on his – by then, newly founded Definitive Jux – record label. (According to Billboard El-P will not be associated with future albums, which of course is a considerable blow.)

As much as I’d like to hear a new album by Cannibal Ox, I’m at the same time a bit perplexed about the way of funding it. As one commentator of the FACT Magazine’s article truthfully put it: “it makes me wonder if this is going to cause some sort of unsettling trend where fans are not only expected/obligated to buy an artist’s material but to also help fund the making of it? I mean, wtf, I remember reading stories about how artists bitd had to actually grind (engineer/DJ/work shitty day/night jobs) to fund their projects and it usually led towards a more rewarding end result.”

Double XP Weekend? Bitch Please

So Treyarch is hosting another double XP weekend for Black Ops II across the platforms (PS3, Xbox, PC and Wii) from February 22 until February 25. This time in order to hype up the release of the upcoming Revolution map pack DLC, they say.

This really subsidies for rank boosting, and Treyarch’s policy has legal sanction. But is fucking unfair.

Only those who are able to play – on this specific and limited occasion – can take advantage of this. Generally speaking, what is the meaning of double XP? To get motherfuckers back into the multiplayer? A hype? Is that really necessary with thousands online? I guess I’d be glad if I was able to play this weekend, but I’m not. And therefore I’ll miss out on all the boosting.

New Console, Same Ol’ Shenanigans


A new PlayStation this holiday season huh? Awesome! It explains the nice screen shots of Grand Theft Auto V. The game will be released in September 17, thus after the roll out of Sony PlayStation 4. Or maybe not. The holiday season being the Christmas season, then GTAV could be the last game standing on the current generation.

Actually I did think the screens almost looked too good to have been rendered on a PS3. But then again, GTAV was originally planned to be released four months earlier, long before the launch of the new console earlier, so who know? Maybe Rockstar Games will release the game on both consoles.

Anyway, GTAV is one of my personal most anticipated games of 2013, fo sho.

Otherwise, speaking of the PlayStation Meeting 2013, I though the leveraging of PlayStation Network with Gaikai technology was the most exiting announcement.

Axis of Evil is some basic, tweaked, dry wobbles and shit on a flexible timeline. Work in progress, I think, or maybe I just start all over on a new one.

Enjoy the Silence

I’ve regarded invisibility to be the overall best perk to stay alive in Call of Duty. I’ve been running with the Suppressor most of the time in Black Ops II. But lately I’ve trying out new weapons and level ‘em up respectively. Therefore, for a big part, I’ve been using other attachments than the Suppressor.

Being exposed on the enemy’s mini-map is not bad if you can turn the table. Be prepared; flip it to your advantage before the gunfight starts. Control the engagement. And if there’s an Orbital VSAT or UAV above, it should be really easy to be ready and able for the next noob to pop up.

Recall the tactical grenade called Decoy featured in the first Black Ops, but now use yourself as bait. Lure the enemy into a kill-zone, but don’t fuck up or you’ll be dead.

Crunk Up the Bass

Here’s a method to get that crunk/trap bass working with your Roland TR-808 drum machine. You know, like that fat Wiz Khalifa track. In brief, the whole point is the get the attack from a kick and some tonality in the following sub-bass boom. And while they’re on the same frequency, you need to make ‘em play along.

Alright then.

Upload an accented 808 kick drum sample with little decay (meaning a dry, short kick without any boom to it) to your sampler.

Get ya sub-bass on. Program it to hit on the same notes as the kick.

Now, the trick is in the Amplitude Envelope of your synth generating the sub-bass: a) slightly adjust the Attack so it doesn’t clash with the kick, b) set the Decay to around 650 ms, c) bring Sustain all down to the bottom and d) raise the Release to around 2,6 s.

You may adjust these numbers so you get the desired sound, but leave the Sustain level to null.

That’s it. I didn’t invent this, I got it Dorincourt, and he didn’t come up with it either. It’s been around for ages. Still, it’s not common knowledge.

About Dubstep Song Structure

Here’s the most standard dubstep algorithm, a kind of tutorial or walkthrough. (A noob tip perhaps.) I know that such dry decryptions can be disenchanting, so stop reading if you don’t want any spoilers.

  1. Intro (rhythm, stabs, melody…), 16 bars
  2. Breakdown (melody/riff, chords…), 8 bars
  3. Build up (tension, white noise, soundbite…), 8 bars
  4. Drop 1 (bass and mayhem), 16 bars
  5. Drop 2 (variations of Drop 1), 16 bars
  6. Bridge (variations of Breakdown and Build up), 16 bars
  7. Drop 3 (variations and/or inclusion of Drop 1 and 2), 32-48 bars
  8. Outro, (melody/riff, chords…) 16 bars

As always, breaking away from this anatomy seems legit. And even if the structure is kinda unimaginative, it’s really the content, the raw material, which separates the wheat from the chaff.

Al Dente Headphones

Firstly, thank you guys for the feedback on the previous posts, I’m now trying out new weaponry in COD based on your suggestions. Now I’d like some recommendations for iPhone headphones.

So I bought new headphones the other day, the a-JAYS Four by Swedish manufacturer Jays, for my old and dirty iPhone 4.


While the sound was good – a relatively rich, deep bass response provided, much better than the Apple default headset – the a-JAYS Four had other problems:

They weren’t in place and fell out too easily. (Even if they were delivered with different sizes of the silicone sleeves.) Really I think my ear canals must be somewhat misshaped; and if so, I just need to deal with it.

The a-JAYS Four totally seal that ambient door. You see, I don’t need maximum external sound insulation, I wanna be able to hear the traffic around me when I’m riding my bike. And yes, I’ve tried to lower the volume to balance this.

I didn’t appreciate the distinguished tangle-free, flat cable (it’s like an al dente pasta linguine string). The problem is that the cable was reproducing the sounds that occur when it’s hitting your body or clothes while moving, straight to the ear canals.

In short, Imma return these suckers to the store.

I never cared too much about headphones for my cell phone/MP3 player. Listen to music outdoors, is done quite passively and purely for pleasure. So I’ve had five or six of the standard iPhone sets, which worked well for this, but the durability is awful.

I’m now looking for alternatives. I’m not interested in any hi-fi gadgets. For me, such tech is overkill. But I’m not getting any garbage either. I want some in-ear or earbud headphones, with full-feature remote and mic. And they should be affordable. (Yes, I want the headphones to be discrete.)

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