Wubfilter is a slightly more advanced filter effect that lets you animate the cutoff frequency of any of the 5 analog filters (low pass, high pass, peak, notch, or bandpass) through an LFO. It’s similar to the LFO found in Wub Machine and can be used to create that wobble bass known from dubstep bass. Apart from dubstep wobble, you make any other sound wobbly for that matter.
How to use Wubfilter
Quick filtering [Beginner]
The quickest way to filter your audio is by using one of the presets in the Soundation studio.
- 1Open Soundation and create a project
- 2Double-click the channel to which you want to apply the Wubfilter, this will open up the bottom panel
- 3Press "+ Add effect" and select Wubfilter in the drop-down menu
- 4In the upper right corner, you can now select one of the pre-made settings
How to automate a filter sweep [Intermediate]
- 1Mark the channel you want to add the effect to by clicking it
- 2Click "+ Add effect" in the bottom panel and pick Wubfilter in the dropdown menu
- 3With the channel still selected, press A to bring up the automation lane
- 4Select Wubfilter: Cutoff from the dropdown list that says Automation
- 5Click on the line in the timeline to make dots controlling the cutoff frequency over time
How to customize Wubfilter [Pro]
Since the Wubfilter has the most options and parameters of the filters in Soundation, it’s a good idea to master it. When you know how to use the Wubfilter you will know how to use most filter effects in existence.
So let’s go through the process one step at a time.
1. Picking a filter
Here's a quick recap of what each filter type does:
LP (LOW PASS) make your audio sound muffled. The cutoff frequency on a low pass filter is anchored at the top of the frequency range and controls how much of the high frequencies are allowed to pass.
HP (HIGH PASS) makes your audio sound thinner. As opposed to the low pass filter, the cutoff frequency on a high pass filter is anchored at the bottom of the frequency range and instead controls what range of the low frequencies leak through while keeping the high-frequency signals intact.
Peak can be used to cut or boost the amplitude of a certain narrow bandwidth.
Notch also has a very narrow and specific bandwidth but instead cuts that range of frequencies out completely, and can be specifically useful if you want to get rid of noisy frequencies such as electric current disturbances.
BP (BAND PASS) is like a combination of a high pass filter and a low pass filter. Instead of blocking either low or high frequencies, bandpass filters block both low and high frequencies while letting through a range (or bandwidth) in the middle of the spectrum.
Read our article about filters to learn more about them.
2. Cutoff & Resonance
Cutoff governs the cutoff point of the filter - at which frequency it begins to filter. Depending on which filter type you've chosen it will filter out the sound above, below or both.
Resonance is tied to the same frequency as the cutoff point - it adds a peak boosting that particular frequency and can be used to emphasize certain timbres of a sound. Try pushing the resonance up a little bit and sweeping the cutoff knob as you play your audio back to hear its effect.
3. Using Drive
Pushing the Drive knob up will take the filtered output signal and boost it in volume. Filtering a sound heavily will result in losing a lot of energy, one purpose of using the drive knob can be to make up for the lost gain. Increasing the drive a lot will cause soft clipping, a distorted effect that can sound cool in some cases.
4. Using the LFO - Low-Frequency Oscillator
You will find LFOs on various synths and effects and learning how to use them is key to your improvement as a music producer - it’s a very powerful way of modulating (animating) your sound over time.
An LFO essentially generates an inaudible low-frequency sound wave that is used to control a parameter - make it ride along with the wave. In this case the LFO is hard-wired to the cutoff frequency of the Wubfilter. We have the possibility to choose which waveshape the generated wave should have, how fast it should oscillate (sway between top and bottom), and how deep the cutoff frequency should go. LFO control gives control over your life.
The waveshapes available are sawtooth waves, a square wave, and triangle waves of both directions. The only waveshape missing is the sine wave, but the triangle should do for that purpose.
Crank the depth of the LFO up, pick a waveshape and experiment with the speed (also known as lfo rate).