Cinematic / Trailer Sound Design FX

Hello Composers!
I have one question to all of you, if you don’t mind can we discuss in this topic how do you create your own custom sound design sounds?
I’m learning this process now and last week i created my very first custom 10 sounds for trailer sound design music:

But still i have a question or better to say questions:

  1. How do you create your custom Braams?
  2. How do you create your custom Drones?
  3. How do you create your custom Pulses?
  4. How do you create your custom Hits?

Would like to learn much from you about this topic! Huge Thanks in advance for all of your tips, tricks, and advice! :slight_smile:

I’m not a fan of sound design, however, what I learned about sound design is everything is sound.

I mean, in a short movie called Dark People, I used the sound of the Celesta, reversed, added distortion etc etc and I created my personal riser, the best thing is the director loved xD.

This is the same process that I use for drones, pulse hits etc etc

  • For pulse I used my footstep and added to Omnisphere and add a custom arpeggiator with delay and reverb.

  • For Braams I really like classical braams, I mean with the orchestra instrument :wink:

  • Drone is amazing to create (for me), sometimes I use noises and low the pitch with delay and reverb sometimes I use preset but I edit for the purpose

  • Hits usually I combine some instrument, depends if I wanna a metallic industrial sound you can use Foley combined with Timpani, with taiko there’s a lot of things that you can do with Hit.

I hope that can help you :wink:

remember, our job is a creative job, so don’t think about what’s is right or wrong (in this case). Try by yourself and if you are satisfied, well it’s good :smiley:


Thank you so much Carlo, it really helped me a lot! I’ve been using sample packs for a couple of years but now wanna learn how to create custom sounds myself, it’s much more creative!

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Hi Alexey,

my name is Alexey as well, haha. Privet! :slight_smile:

There are a couple of possible ways to make a sound your own etc.
But what I found recently is using modular & sampled synths like Iris 2 by iZotope. The best thing is it’s free on if you purchase something else, doesn’t matter how much you spend. This thing is worth every penny! So the principle is, even if you don’t have this one yet, to layer, filter, delay, saturate, oscillate, envelope-te :slight_smile: and reverbenate the sounds you’ve either recorded yourself or layered and cuted from existing stuff.

The best purchase at the moment you can make on “Pluginboutique” is getting “Duck” by Devious Machines and you take Iris 2 for free.

Best regards,

To add to this “Sound Design” topic…8Dio is running a “Contest” right now called ASMR. You need to have 5 sounds, which you “sound designed” yourself and send them an email with a download-link. Later will get a full for free library from all collected sounds from all the participants and the 8Dio-Team as well.

Here are my sounds, which I’ve send over.


Thanks so much Alexey! Really appreciate your answers, plugin boutique is really great. Gonna get Iris 2!

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Finally got Iris 2! It’s so incredible tool a real game changer to me! So easy in use and so great diversity of sounds you can create with this plugin! Plugin Boutique Rules! :slight_smile:


There’s just too much to say on this subject so I’ll give you two important ones to try.

Hits: start with a low full bodies Tom - this will be the foundation of your hit. (Subjective)
Then add another slightly higher hit and duplicate it. On the duplication ad a LOT OF VERB, bounce it in place.
Add another very low Tom and detune it and cut the high end off. Finally get a sine wave pluck and add that underneath (veeery low) and finish off with a cymbal got washed in verb (long tail) and add a high metal sound. Mix to taste =modern trailer hit.

Drone: time stretch any live sound until your getting a few nice artefacts. Guitars good for this. Manipulate the sound with verb and put it into a sequencer like Alchemy. Map it to the grid and select a smooth section to loop. Add more verb and set the decay time to long. Then mix whatever wave form with it and do any other in house manipulation you want to it.

Hope these help

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Thank you so much Geoffrey! Really appreciate your tips. Gonna try everything you wrote!

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No worries :slight_smile: with anything in this genre is all about layers :smiley: just keep experimenting.

Sound design doesn’t need to be a scary thing. It’s a lot of fun infact.

Your main types of sound manipulation are

  1. Stretching/compressing audio files (nice and easy)

  2. Adding effects (also easy)

  3. Manipulating transients (easily done with a transient designer, there free ones if you don’t have one). They add or subtract attack.

  4. Detuning or pitch manipulation (nice and easy)

  5. volume manipulation (automation)

  6. Cutting audio up and placing it rhythmically.

There are others but these are the main ones and they’re the easiest too :slight_smile:

Hello, for braams I use two very deep notes of a classical piano. The notes are major second apart. Then I put some plugin on it till it sounds like I want it.

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Piano for braams, wow that sounds interesting. What sound effect do you usually add to shape it?

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I use distortion, Tremolo, Delay, EQ (high cut), Reverb and some other sound plugins. Sometimes I double the track.