Originally designed for breathing life into dull drum loops, PolyJam can also be used on totally different material, like a simple synth sound for instance, with equally impressive results, that is! Not convinced, yet? Well, then let’s get to work!
Here’s our example track – listen for the rather lifeless synth arp:
Poly Enhancement Process
First we place PolyJam on the synth track in our DAW. In order to get the best or clearest results possible it’s best to insert any delays, reverbs, and other effects that can affect the transients of the source material after PolyJam in the signal flow. This way the plugin can work on the actual sound and won’t be ‘confused’ by echoes, halls, etc. so to speak.
Now it’s time to experiment a bit, because the labels BASS, SNARE, and CYMBALS won’t help us with our synth, of course. However, we can simply consider the knobs as multiband-controls: BASS covers the low frequencies, SNARE the midrange, and CYMBALS the high frequencies. Before we eventually adjust the values we need to listen closely to the synth itself and its characteristics. It’s not really bass-heavy and there could be somewhat more top-end as well. Having figured that out we can now crank the BASS-knob all the way up – in the end, there’s not much we can mess up here, but rather beef things up a little. Next we set SNARE to 8, and CYMBALS to 5. The latter will give us some nice enhancement without over-emphasizing the highs (which could lead to an unpleasant harshness).
The STEPS-control determines after how many steps the internal clock of the plugin is reset. It’s often a good idea to set it according to a short loop or section of the song. Our song comprises of a four-bar loop, which is repeated one time. Hence we choose 16 STEPS – 4 (beats) x 4 (bars) = 16. We also automate the RESET-button at the beginning so that the result sounds always the same. Finally, we choose an ACTION-value of 6, which will be sufficient to give us the desired effect.
The interface of the plugin should now look something like this:
All right, let’s go back to our track and see what we’ve done to the once lame synth arp. The plugin doesn’t change the original character, but added that little ‘extra’ that what missing before:
You can download the preset for PolyJam here: PolyJam Synth Arp Preset.FXP