Here is a beginner’s guide on How to Make Dubstep Music. Learn about instruments, audio effects, and watch Dubstep tutorials.
Free Samples: Free Dubstep Sample Packs
How to Make Dubstep Music
Here we break down common dubstep instruments, effects, and dubstep song arrangement structure.
1. Dubstep Tempo
Dubstep has no fixed BPM range, but most producers make their songs around 140 BPM.
The most common Dubstep tempo is 140 BPM.
If you want to change the feel of your track a bit, try dividing your BPM by two, in this case, 70 BPM.
Make sure you try other tempo ranges such as 150 BPM and 160 BPM too. It may give you a different feel.
2. Drum Pattern
Dubstep drums tend to be heavy sounding and heavy layered.
Make sure you take some time to pick the right samples a the start instead of having to fix them later.
For the kick, pick a sample with a good transient and a fast release. Make sure to think in advance about how it’s going to interact with the other elements.
Related: Free Music Samples
Make sure your snare has a tail. You can do it with a gated reverb in the snare or layering white noise above it every time it hits.
Check out this dubstep tutorial on drums and hats in FL Studio.
3. The Lead Melody
A saw synth type is typically used for the lead, generally with different oscillators slightly detuned from each other.
Use your synth’s legato and glide tools to give your leads some movement and better fit in the overall mix.
Another common practice is to use vocal shots as the lead. You take a vocal shot and load it into a wavetable synthesizer, from there, you can customize it to your liking.
Check out these two videos. The first one is about making a traditional dubstep lead in Serum, the second about vocal leads:
4. Bass Pattern
In dubstep, the most used type of bass is the wobble bass. A wobble bass is a bass with an LFO effect.
LFO’s are modulators that you can use to modulate filters, pitch, and every aspect of your synth. It will give your sound a very interesting movement characteristic. Make sure to learn about synth LFO and put it into practice.
Don’t use only one synth for the bass: combine different ones while being aware of their place in the mix.
This tutorial shows you how to make a dubstep bass in the Serum plugin:
For the harmony, try using the LFO trick in pad synths. Make sure to sync it to your DAW BPM first.
You can also automate the pad filters: try making the filter rise every time a chord is played.
Use pitch bend effects sparingly in the transitions to make your harmony more interesting.
Try using instruments that are unconventional for the genre such as pianos and electric pianos. It may sound surprisingly good.
6. Effects & Transitions
Most dubstep music tends to be effect-heavy. Try gathering a few build and impact samples on the internet.
Don’t rely solely on samples: learn how to make rising synths using LFO and pitch bends.
You can also use a white noise synth to make your own effects.
In the transitions, make sure to get the effects to work in harmony with the drum fills.
7. Dubstep Song Arrangement
Dubstep usually follows the basic EDM structure but with a shorter intro. Generally 15 seconds.
This is the typical structure for a dubstep track:
Intro – Verse – Drop – Verse – Drop – Outro
Remember, Dubstep music is not as “locked” to the structure as other EDM genres, so try to vary things a bit.
Dubstep Music Tutorials
Learn how to create a Melodic Dubstep beat in FL Studio.
How to Make a Mainstream Dubstep Drop
Watch how to create a basic drum pattern and synth melody.
How to Make a Dubstep Song
Here is another helpful video tutorial on how to make Dubstep in fl studio.
How to Make Dubstep in Ableton Live
Tutorial on how to use Serum to make Dubstep Music in Ableton Live.
Dubstep Sounds For Beginners
Dubstep music production tips on popular VST instruments and settings.
Dubstep Common Questions
What is Dubstep Music?
Dubstep is a music genre of electronic dance music that originated in South London in the 1990s.
It is typically characterized by a sparse, beat-to-beat rhythm pattern with prominent low frequencies.
Learn more on Wikipedia
Who Are Popular Dubstep Artists?
These are some of the the most popular Dubstep music artists.
- Major Lazer
- Dj Snake
- Zeds Dead
- Flux Pavilion
- Seven Lions
- Kill The Noise
Do you have any dubstep music production tips?
Do you attend any dubstep music festivals?
Let us know in the comment section below.
Related: How to Make Beats