Sound Design & Synthesis

Sound Design & Synthesis

Sound Design & Synthesis Course | London

Our Sound Design & Synthesis course is for those of you who want to take back control of music. Don’t be held hostage by sample packs and presets; learn how to modify, manipulate and create your own sounds from scratch, and squeeze an extra 15% out of those presets that sound just not quite there.

We aim to equip you with all the necessary knowledge to program and develop sounds in all styles using a broad range of synthesis and production techniques. You can finally finish those 8-bar loops you’ve had kicking around on your hard drives and for the more intermediate, you can crystallise your knowledge and take it to the next step.

During our lessons in London, you will learn how to craft the sounds you can hear in your head from the ground up, and apply them to your genre of choice. The class is full of production tips, tricks, and advice on how to get your electronic music moving.

We teach the skills that you can apply to any synth, sampler or drum machine. Don’t confine yourself to what you know, we’ll equip you with the confidence and understanding to look at any soft synth or vst and without being phased.

The lessons are interactive and we encourage you to ask questions and bounce ideas off your fellow learners as well as your instructor. This course is based in Logic and Ableton Live but is suitable for people from all DAW backgrounds. The total class duration is 36 hours.

Many learners these days prefer to use their own laptops on our courses for things like getting help customising their set-up, and they have their project exactly as they left it in class to work on at home. So we made the course more affordable, but added a £50 supplement for learners who wish to hire an iMac loaded with software. Please ensure you book an iMac when you book your course if you need one. Controller keyboards, headphones, and audio interfaces are always provided for everyone.



  • Course introduction and overview
  • Audio and MIDI fundamentals
  • Envelopes, frequency, phase and waveform displays and more
  • An introduction to spectral analysis and oscilloscopes
  • Synthesising, sampling, layering and processing drums with Ultrabeat

Subtractive Synthesis

  • The history and foundations of analog synthesis
  • Oscillators, waveforms, filters, amps, and LFOs
  • How to make basses, pads, leads and FX using only limited tools
  • How to make your presets work for you


  • Advanced subtractive techniques
  • Oscillator Sync, ring modulation and more
  • Wavetable synthesis – Internal routing, layering & tuning oscillators and making kinetic sounds
  • Customisable LFOs, waveshaping, sample rate reduction and distortion
  • Endless modulation possibilities!


  • Audio-rate modulation of oscillators, amplitude, and filters
  • Getting to grips with frequency modulation synthesis
  • Using EFM1 and Operator to make huge expressive pads to digital basses
  • Advanced arpeggiating
  • FM8’s modulation matrix and breakpoint envelopes

Sampling, Granular and more

  • Granular and Additive Synthesis
  • Absynth, Razor, Reaktor, Kontakt and more
  • Manipulating recording beyond recognition
  • Sampling and Resampling in your DAW
  • Vocoding basics

Reaktor, Modular Synthesis, and Production Techniques

  • An introduction to Reaktor, building and editing pre-existing ensembles
  • Drum machines, sequencers, effects and synths
  • Eurorack modular synthesis on our very own modular system
  • Advanced production techniques

Our Instructors!

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Check out the LA student feedback from our longer Electronic Music Academy Program

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I learned a lot thanks to a very qualified and professional instructor, who enriched the theory with useful practical tips and tricks that really helped improve my work

Dafni Piffer

The reason I took the course is because I wanted to get more in-depth with different types of synthesis, electronic sound design and programming beats. I’ve been working on music the whole time on the courses here and at home, putting the tricks and methods I’ve learnt into practice. I’ve found that the way I approach things now is different to how I did before. I find now I work in a kind of optimised way, not only saving so much time when I work on music by getting what I want quickly. I now just know what to do to improve a song with production. There’s so much more scope now, so many more options than I had before I did the EMP (now SDP) course in particular. Great tutors with experience, good teaching techniques, and well structured lessons. I wouldn't change anything on both courses, and next I am going to take your mixing course.

Stefan Olsdal

This course kicked ass. An incredible amount of info and industry experience were delivered in a concise and passionate way. By week three I couldn't believe we were only half way through.

Todd Roache

The course has completely changed the way I listen to and produce music and has opened my ears to many more musical styles.

Chris Fry

The small class sizes and great tutors provided the perfect platform to advance my music production skills effectively in a short period of time. This really is a great step to take if you are serious about taking things to the next level.

Mitch Wellings

I've been composing experimental electronic music for a while, from a contemporary academic composition approach. As they don't teach in depth the advantages of sound synthesis in a classical composition degree, this course was incredibly helpful to expand my knowledge and control of the digital sonic world.

Juan Carlos Vasquez

Really enjoyable and great value course- has really boosted my confidence and demystified a lot of confusion I had about producing. Would highly recommend!

Phoebe d'Abo @PhoebedAbo

It's an extremely friendly place with a positive attitude and a great array of instructors.

Flt Lt Nick Bell (aka AV8)

You simply learn how to make music, creating sounds from ground instead of using presets and loops. That pushes the quality of production a lot and makes it more unique.

Daniel Conen (Get Physical)

Being a professional self-taught producer, it was valuable to revise some things I already knew, but must importantly, I learnt so many things I did not know about before. I would recommend Garnish to experienced professional producers who make electronic music. You will still learn loads!

Rui Da Silva