What are the steps to mixing 808 bass samples so they stand out in a hip hop beat?
In today’s modern music production, the 808 bass drum sound is a dominant feature. Especially in hip hop beats, the deep, booming sound of the 808 bass is a crucial element to achieving that rich, warm, and aggressive sound. However, creating an effective and powerful 808 bass sample can seem quite daunting. Nevertheless, it’s completely achievable with the right knowledge and tools at your fingertips.
Choosing the Right Kick
The fundamental part of an 808 bass sample is the kick. The kick provides the hard-hitting thump that drives the rest of the beat. Therefore, you need to choose a kick sound with a strong and deep tone. To enhance the kick’s depth, you can use a pitch-shifter or a bass enhancer plugin.
Creating the Sub Bass
After creating our kick, the next step is to shape the sub bass. The 808 is known for its harmonic-rich and sub-heavy bass. To get that powerful sub feel, choose a sine or a triangle waveform for your sub bass. Remember to pitch down the waveform to fit into those low frequencies.
Making It Buzz
One unique characteristic of the 808 bass is its buzzy character. This comes from the distortion and saturation applied to the sub bass. There is a plethora of distortion and saturation plugins available. Experiment with different types and amounts of distortions till you get that distinct low-end buzz.
Tuning the Kick and Bass
The final step in making an 808 bass sample is tuning. It’s essential that the kick and bass are in tune with each other and the overall beat. Utilize your DAW’s pitch correction tools or plugins to achieve this. It’s the fine tuning that makes your 808 bass sound professional and polished.
Tips and Tricks
Quality over Quantity: You might be tempted to add more elements to your bass, but often, simplicity is the key. Make your kick and bass do the talking. Cluttering the soundscape with unnecessary elements can degrade your bass’ impact.
Effect Use: Use effects sparingly and subtly. Over-processed sounds can lose their original character and richness. A little can go a long way!