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Kyma Grain Clouds Processing

In this video, Meta Function demonstrate various granular synthesis techniques with a Symbolic Sound Paca sound computer running Kyma 7.

SSC’s Paca(rana) / Kyma is arguably the world’s most powerful and flexible sound design environment. The Paca(rana) is a small but powerful multiprocessor computer that sits unobtrusively alongside your Mac or PC and does all the sound synthesis and processing. Like any computer, the function of the Paca(rana) is defined by its software. Unlike other computers, the Paca(rana) doesn’t have to run a huge general-purpose operating system with elaborate GUIs and multiple independent processes that can interrupt each other at any time. With the Paca(rana), all compute cycles are dedicated to sound; you don’t have to share it with any other tasks. A multitude of processing options exist, with the user able to construct many algorithms via patching together prototypes or customizing existing ‘sounds’.

This video demonstrates granular synthesis via the ‘SampleCloud’ prototype. This generates a cloud of grains from a sample read from disk, using a Gaussian shape to provide an amplitude envelope for each grain. Various parameters are manipulated in real-time, including the wet/dry mix. Density is the likelihood that a new grain will start up on each sample, with small values resulting in a sparse texture and large values generating a dense texture. Grain Duration (GranDr) is the duration of each individual grain and a random amount of jitter is applied to the grain duration’s via the DurDev parameter. Time Index (TmInd) is a pointer into the Sample memory with -1 pointing to the beginning of the sample, 0 pointing to the middle, and 1 pointing to the end. The TimeIndexJitter parameter (TimJttr) is the amount of random deviation forward or backward in time from the point specified by the Time Index. An LFO (shape morph) prototype is pasted as a function into the TimeIndexJitter parameter to provide modulation, and it’s depth, rate and waveshape morphing parameters are manipulated.

This patch represents a very basic example of what the Paca(ana) / Kyma system is capable of. A myriad of more complex algorithms and sound design possibilities exists. This is the tip of a very large iceberg. For more information visit

Audio recorded via Calrec S2 console and SSL convertors. All dry, no FX, EQ or compression. The only post production performed was normalization.

Watch at 720p with good quality audio monitoring for the best experience.


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