DECEMBER 21, 2023

Pro Tools | Sonic Drop: SynthCell Industries

SynthCell Industries Sonic Drop 1862x1040

Having been an impressionable youth in the 90’s, Industrial music and bands such as Nine Inch Nails, Skinny Puppy, and Front Line Assembly reside deep within my DNA. In recent years the band HEALTH has been one of my favorites carrying the Industrial flag. Anecdotally, NIN’s The Fragile is actually one of my favorite and most influential albums due to the combination of forward thinking sound design married with traditional instruments, not to mention the sheer talent of everything involved in making that record. Our subtractive synthesizer, SynthCell, while being relatively simple on the outside, is actually quite capable of creating sounds in the industrial sphere, and it should be noted that Industrial wouldn’t exist in the way we know it without the existence of the humble synthesizer. While SynthCell already ships with a large library of presets, I wanted to present an alternative to the factory sound bank that’s a bit darker and more aggressive, so it’s my pleasure to introduce the newest Pro Tools | Sonic Drop: SynthCell Industries. 

SynthCell Industries is a bank of 50 presets designed to evoke the darker side of SynthCell, as well as increase your black eyeliner budget. In creating these presets we were quite liberal in our use of distortion, detuning, and general instability and aggression. The presets cover bases from distorted basses, screaming leads, to haunting pads, mechanical arpeggios and distorted drums. Some of the presets emulate sounds from seminal bands and songs, while others are designed to invoke the general moodiness and aggressiveness of the genre. The audio demo of SynthCell Industries was made entirely with just SynthCell Industries and not an ounce of additional processing was added.

As always, while the presets do sound great on their own, I encourage you to experiment with trying to create these kinds of sounds from scratch as well. The sound of a fuzz pedal combined with a synth is certainly something to behold, especially when you’re got some detuned oscillators or complex FM going on. The way distortion emphasizes artifacts is often beautiful and for me often inspiring. You can always do this in the box with all of the incredible plugins available today. Pro Tools Artist ships with numerous distortions, and while Tri-Knob Fuzz, SansAmp PSA-1, and Eleven MK II would be where I would personally start, there are many other options included to try out as well. However, even with options like that at your disposal, SynthCell Industries will get you there without any additional help.

SynthCell screenshot

What better way to ring in the holiday season than a set of presets inspired by artists often mired in doom and dismay?!

Like all Pro Tools | Sonic Drops, SynthCell Industries is FREE with your active Pro Tools annual or monthly subscription or current perpetual license plan. Check the Sonic Drop tab in Avid Link (version 2023.3 or later) for a list of all the latest Sonic Drops. This is also where you can play audio samples and manage your content downloads. Watch this video to learn more.

Ho ho ho, Merry Humbug!


  • Matt Lange is a multiplatinum artist, producer, DJ, and sound designer who recently joined the Avid team as Head of Audio Content.

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