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The 40 greatest synth sounds of all time, No 23: Daft Punk - Da Funk

Originally released in 1995 as a double A-side single with Rolling and Scratching on the flip, Da Funk sold a mere 2,000 copies until it was re-released on Daft Punk’s seminal 1997 album Homework.

While the track has a very house-flavoured sound, the inspiration actually came from the (now ex) Daft Punk boys spending late nights listening to G Funk hip-hop tunes.

If you ever watched MTV 2, you might remember the iconic Spike Jones video for this track entitled Big City Nights, which followed the travails of a dog named Charles as he navigated NYC with a broken leg, and only a set of crutches and a boombox for company.

We can make our own take on this sound, using the legendary DuneCM alongside a splash of distortion from the equally awesome WaveShaperCM.

Daft Punk Synth Sounds

(Image credit: Future)

Step 1: Set the Osc Mix to 50%, to hear Oscs 1 and 2 equally. Pitch Osc 1 down an octave for thickness, then reduce DuneCM’s Output Volume to 18%. Pushing the FM 2 to 20% gives the sound a more detuned, grungy feel. Set Filter type to HP12/LP12 Split to shape the sound further.

Daft Punk Synth Sounds

(Image credit: Future)

Step 2: Reducing the Filter Cutoff to 70%, and pushing the Res up to 40% will give a grungy sound. Increase Filter Envelope to 20%, then push the env’s Attack and Decay up to 50%. Reducing the Sustain to 0%, with a short 10% Release will make the filter open and close like the original.

Daft Punk Synth Sounds

(Image credit: Future)

Step 3: Increasing the Amp Env’s Attack to around 50% will give the sound a less machine gun, attack-heavy feel. To finish, add a splash of distortion. Call up Cableguys WaveShaperCM, with the Bottom Noise preset loaded. Reduce the mix to 20% for the thick, grungy sound we want.

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