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iZotope VocalSynth 2: Vocoder, FX & More

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iZotope VocalSynth 2: Vocoder, FX & More
iZotope VocalSynth 2: Vocoder, FX & More - youtube Video

Hello, my name is Ian Vargo and I’m from The Pro Audio Files, and today I’m going to talk about a new plugin from iZotope. It’s called VocalSynth 2.


Hi guys, and welcome to this overview of the VocalSynth 2 plugin from iZotope. This is a welcome update from the original vocal synth plugin. We have improved sound quality and more effects. We have more control over the parameters of the effects, we have a new BioVox module, which we’re going to talk about.

This plugin actually communicates with the other iZotope plugins that you may have. I love that iZotope are doing that, and of course, we have an improved graphical user interface, which provides this lovely animation, depending on the different modules that you might be using, and we can also control this animation, and it interacts with the sounds that you might be applying VocalSynth to.

So it’s a really deep plugin, it provides a really unique sound, and today, I’m going to show you how I like using it the most, which is as a vocoder.

So you’re probably familiar with the sound of a vocoder at this point. Especially if you watched the beginning of this video. Sort of has this human/robot hybrid thing going on, and if your production needs sort of an 80’s flavor to it, it might work great.

Essentially, a vocoder works like this. You have a modulator signal, which is going to be this lead vocal performance, and then a carrier signal, which is going to be a combination of the vocal synth plugin, and whichever notes that I create using my MIDI keyboard, which are recorded onto this MIDI track in Pro Tools.

So let me show you how to setup the vocoder using VocalSynth.


So I have a freshly loaded instance of VocalSynth placed directly as an insert on my lead vocal track. To start, let’s take a listen to the track with nothing soloed, everything in context, but with VocalSynth bypassed, and I’ll explain what I want to do next.

[mix, no VocalSynth]

Okay, so now let’s solo the lead vocal track. VocalSynth will still be bypassed.


Okay. So next, what I’m going to do is click on auto-mode right here, and I’m going to select MIDI.

This gives a little bit of a setup on how to do something in Pro Tools, I think that’s great. Hit accept. The next thing that we’re going to do is change our output on this MIDI track, which remember, is going to receive signal from my keyboard, and we’re going to select, “VocalSynth – MIDI In 1.” So now I’m going to record a series of individual notes on my MIDI keyboard that we are only going to hear when we receive signal from the original vocal performance. Alright, here we go.

[vocals, vocoder affected]

And because this is MIDI, of course we can go then alter our performance to be exactly perfect if I don’t want this breath right here to trigger that note, I can do that, and individual notes are cool, but I have this pre-recorded performance of the chords, so let’s take a listen to that.

[vocals, vocoded with chords]


And as I mentioned earlier, VocalSynth 2 has all of these awesome effects. Let’s listen to perhaps the chorus and delay.

[vocals with chorus and delay]

Very cool. A really useable effect. Let’s switch over from the vocoder module to the BioVox module.

[vocals, BioVox]

And this actually gives you controls over different parameters of the human voice. Let’s go even more in-depth in here, and depending on where I drag this ball, we’ve got the ability to change the vowels. So this is another way to create unique textures, so I’m going to hit play and let’s take a listen.

[vocals, affected]

So you can use VocalSynth 2 as a traditional vocoder, or you can create really interesting, pad-like textures as well.


Alright guys, so I find VocalSynth 2 to be truly fun and inspiring if you’re feeling a little bit bored with your vocal productions, it’s definitely worth checking out.

The track that I’m using, by the way, is Stargazing, by the band, Pushing Static. I have a new walkthrough course where I mix the track from beginning to end coming out soon, so check that out. Again, this has been Ian Vargo with The Pro Audio Files. Thanks.


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 Mastering in the Box and Mixing Pop.