Pro Audio Files

How to Create a Vocoder Effect with iZotope VocalSynth

Greetings! My name is Ian Vargo. I’m with The Pro Audio Files, and today I’m going to be showing you how to setup and create a vocoder effect using the brand new, iZotope VocalSynth plug-in, which is scheduled to be released on May 18th. Make sure you check it out.

Also, keep an eye out for an article I’m writing on a brief history of the vocoder effect.

Okay, so here we are in Pro Tools. I’ve got an instrumental track, lead vocal track, and then I duplicated that track for the purpose of this tutorial video.

So on this lead vocal track right here, we are going to place an instance of the iZotope VocalSynth. And even using the basic preset, we are able to achieve a really great result. So let’s make sure that enable MIDI mode is on, make sure this is lit up right here, and now we’ve got to create one MIDI track in Pro Tools.

It’s important to make sure that we look at the output of this MIDI track, and change it to, you guessed it, iZotope VocalSynth.

Now that we’ve got that setup, this MIDI track right here is receiving signal from my MIDI keyboard. This song is in the key of A, so the two chords that I’m going to play in the verse are A and D.

Now what we are trying to do is use this vocal performance right here to drive the input of this synthesizer, and depending on the chords that we play, it’s going to sound different.

So we have a lot of really great musical options, alright? So let’s hear it without the VocalSynth on it.


Now let’s hear it with those chords.

[mix with VocalSynth]

Awesome. So that’s definitely a very recognizable, yet unique musical effect. We have the sound of the synthesizer, but we’re imparting some characteristics of the vocal performance onto that synth.

Let’s move forward to this chorus, where we have a big stack of vocals. Let’s see what happens.

[mix, with VocalSynth of vocal stacks]

One of the great things about this process is now we have MIDI information, so if we want to go back and change notes or add and subtract things, we can do so.

This is a very deep plug-in, and as you can see, just using the basic preset, we achieved a pretty great result. I haven’t had enough time to spend with it to give you another tutorial yet, but if you have any ideas or questions, make sure to get in touch.

Again, this is Ian Vargo with The Pro Audio Files. Thanks!

Ian Vargo

Ian Vargo

Ian Vargo is a Producer, Mixer and Audio Professor based in Los Angeles. He has worked on numerous major label and independent records. Get in touch on his website or learn more from him in his new Mastering in the Box course.
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