Tricks for making sure reverb isn't too muddy?
Old 29th December 2012
  #1
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Tricks for making sure reverb isn't too muddy?

So I always seem to be stuck somewhere between have too little reverb or too much mud.

This is usually with strings, brass, piano etc and I do remove the low end from lower registers and never really boost anything.

I tend to use one reverb bus with a Todd preset in Space Designer and then adjust the send levels to taste. Do I need to be using two reverb busses for close and far reverbs?
Old 29th December 2012
  #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amber View Post
So I always seem to be stuck somewhere between have too little reverb or too much mud.

This is usually with strings, brass, piano etc and I do remove the low end from lower registers and never really boost anything.

I tend to use one reverb bus with a Todd preset in Space Designer and then adjust the send levels to taste. Do I need to be using two reverb busses for close and far reverbs?
You can use two reverbs like that, try using the same verb, only with a shorter decay time.

Also try putting an EQ after your reverb to pull out some information in the trouble areas
Old 29th December 2012
  #3
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This is a whole art and not a simple question or answer.

Yes to 2 verbs. YES to 3 verbs. YES to 4 + verbs.

As for your mud. HPF's are there to be used. Most verbs have an adjustment internally, but you can always put a plug after.
Old 29th December 2012
  #4
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Not one to blame my tools, but I'm not a fan of Logics EQ. Might look into getting something else for this purpose as it either seems to make it too muddy or to dry in the problem areas.
Old 29th December 2012
  #5
Try replacing verb w delay. That should clean things up.
Old 29th December 2012
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amber View Post
Not one to blame my tools, but I'm not a fan of Logics EQ. Might look into getting something else for this purpose as it either seems to make it too muddy or to dry in the problem areas.
Logic's EQ is just fine. Also Space Designer has a built-in EQ. In most cases I just get rid of most low-end with reverb as it seldom provides a function and just adds muddiness. Unless you do a Ulrich Schnauss like production of course.
Old 30th December 2012
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amber View Post
So I always seem to be stuck somewhere between have too little reverb or too much mud.

This is usually with strings, brass, piano etc and I do remove the low end from lower registers and never really boost anything.

I tend to use one reverb bus with a Todd preset in Space Designer and then adjust the send levels to taste. Do I need to be using two reverb busses for close and far reverbs?
Usually, if it doesn't sound right, it's not,

Next time if it sounds too muddy, before reaching for the EQ try....

1. A different instrument

2. A different reverb, or reverb time

3. High passing the instrument & reverb with a nice filter

I always have three reverbs on busses; short, long and massive

Old 30th December 2012
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baskervils View Post
Try replacing verb w delay. That should clean things up.
Not sure if that was meant as a joke, or.....

A few things to keep in mind:

Most people - by nature, me thinks - use reverb with tails that are too long. Concert halls generally don't have anywhere near as long a tail as many people seem to think. Try shortening the tails a bit, and if you need to, raise the volume of the verb a tad. A little more level on the verb with a shorter tail(s), is generally better than a little less level on the verb with a longer tail.

Try cutting some of the lows from the verb (not the source - unless the source is muddy). A good starting point is 3-4 db in the range of 150 > 250 Hz with a somewhat wide Q. That can vary, of course.

If you use different verbs for different instruments (like I do), make sure that the verbs are similiar. They shouldn't be worlds apart; you then have too much 'competition' if they are.

Cheers.
Old 30th December 2012
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Hayat View Post
Not sure if that was meant as a joke, or.....
I don't think he was joking, I stopped using reverbs after using them for the longest time, only to be replaced by delay. I still use reverbs, on snares and percussive stuff that wouldn't work well with delay, but delay is always on my vocals. The mix is always too thick to hear reverb properly or it has to be cranked too high in the mix, so I just stopped using it. Maybe one day ill slap some reverb back into my vocal chain... But not right now lol.
Old 30th December 2012
  #10
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I believe Mark Stent says he uses delays a lot in situations where the automatic reaction would be to use a reverb.
Old 30th December 2012
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drBill View Post
This is a whole art and not a simple question or answer.

Yes to 2 verbs. YES to 3 verbs. YES to 4 + verbs.

As for your mud. HPF's are there to be used. Most verbs have an adjustment internally, but you can always put a plug after.
roll of the bottom end, top end and cut around 3.0 to 3.5 Ghz.

try using a room,plate,hall to create ur depth and height. create the sends gains to just to when your can hear the reverb and then turn it back a little bit.

u can create realistic depth with little amounts of different reverbs. avoid using large amounts of any single reverb.
Old 30th December 2012
  #12
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a tip i find very helpful... play short noise bursts thru a reverb preset to get an idea of what it's doing

cut the tail off and listen to early reflections alone and vice versa

sparse arrangements benefit from lots of diffusion and vice versa

and yes, a simple tempo-based delay with little or no feedback and some HPF can cure a lot of problems and still create the needed space

(reverb is a bunch of complex delays)
Old 30th December 2012
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe_04_04 View Post
I don't think he was joking, I stopped using reverbs after using them for the longest time, only to be replaced by delay.
The op specifically made mention of: usually with strings, brass, piano etc

You guys actually replace reverb with delay on strings, brass, and piano?
Old 30th December 2012
  #14
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Yeah this is with film score type instruments.
Old 30th December 2012
  #15
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use an EQ or Graphic before your Reverb. not after it.
Old 30th December 2012
  #16
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delays (in place of reverb) are used with everything from vocals to kazoo, from film music to pop
Old 31st December 2012
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Hayat View Post
The op specifically made mention of: usually with strings, brass, piano etc

You guys actually replace reverb with delay on strings, brass, and piano?
You can decrease delay time, increase feedback and get a "pseudo-reverb" that doesn't take up as much room as a normal reverb.

And yes, I put delay on some pianos..

Last edited by narcoman; 2nd January 2013 at 01:55 AM.. Reason: making love
Old 31st December 2012
  #18
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You personally can swap reverb for delay on your film score orchestral instruments (which is what we are talking about here) if you'd like, but that's not the way it's done. Find me one top engineer (Dennis Sands, John Rodd, Shawn Murphy, etc) who uses delay as a "pseudo-reverb", instead of an actual reverb.

Cheers.

Last edited by narcoman; 2nd January 2013 at 01:57 AM.. Reason: continuing to form the love
Old 31st December 2012
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Hayat View Post

You personally can swap reverb for delay on your film score orchestral instruments (which is what we are talking about here) if you'd like, but that's not the way it's done. Find me one top engineer (Dennis Sands, John Rodd, Shawn Murphy, etc) who uses delay as a "pseudo-reverb", instead of an actual reverb.

Cheers.
Plenty of top engineers use both delay and reverb to add space.
more here:
Use Reverb Like A Pro: 1

Last edited by narcoman; 2nd January 2013 at 01:57 AM.. Reason: the love abides
Old 31st December 2012
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baskervils View Post
Plenty of top engineers use both delay and reverb to add space.
more here:
Use Reverb Like A Pro: 1
"use both delay and reverb"

AND

Give me one top engineer - not an article in a mag - who uses delay as a "pseudo-reverb", instead of an actual reverb.

Last edited by narcoman; 2nd January 2013 at 01:58 AM.. Reason: like peanut butter
Old 31st December 2012
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Hayat View Post

You personally can swap reverb for delay on your film score orchestral instruments (which is what we are talking about here) if you'd like, but that's not the way it's done. Find me one top engineer (Dennis Sands, John Rodd, Shawn Murphy, etc) who uses delay as a "pseudo-reverb", instead of an actual reverb.

Cheers.
I really didn't take what you said too seriously lol, I'm just defending my approach.
Why does a "top engineer" have to have used the technique for it to be considered valid? Sure, they have wealths to give us "n00bz," but are we restricted from thinking outside the box? Delays take up less space in the mix and are easier to work with. My opinion man. Lets move on so OP can continue his quest for viable solutions and alternatives to his original question :D

Last edited by narcoman; 2nd January 2013 at 01:58 AM.. Reason: on a cracker. Lovely.
Old 18th January 2013
  #22
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Originally Posted by Focalpress View Post
roll of the bottom end, top end and cut around 3.0 to 3.5 Ghz.
Kilo, Mega, Giga, Tera - you probably mean kilohertz
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