Oscillator Subtractive Synthesizer

The oscillator is the source of a synthesizer’s sound. You can vary the sound of an oscillator by changing its waveform. Select the different waveforms below and press the piano keys to hear how they sound.

A waveform’s harmonics determine the timbre of the oscillator. A sine wave has only one harmonic, making it a pure tone. The triangle wave and square wave contain only the odd harmonics of the harmonic series. However, the square wave’s harmonics are louder than the triangle wave, giving it a brighter sound. The sawtooth wave contains even and odd harmonics, making it the brightest of the four.
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