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How to Increase Reverb on Louder Vocal Passages?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #1
Gear Nut
How to Increase Reverb on Louder Vocal Passages?

Maybe there's a term for it? How do you do it? When the vocal part gets louder, the reverb gets obviously louder. Listen to Nirvana's "All Apologies". on the louder vocal parts, the vocal reverb gets more pronounced than on the quieter parts. Is this a manual fader ride? Is it sending the vocals to reverb pre-compressor? There's a bunch of songs that do this, I can't think of any other examples at the moment but it's pretty popular on slower female vocal songs as well.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #2
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simpleton View Post
Maybe there's a term for it? How do you do it? When the vocal part gets louder, the reverb gets obviously louder. Listen to Nirvana's "All Apologies". on the louder vocal parts, the vocal reverb gets more pronounced than on the quieter parts. Is this a manual fader ride? Is it sending the vocals to reverb pre-compressor? There's a bunch of songs that do this, I can't think of any other examples at the moment but it's pretty popular on slower female vocal songs as well.
Easy. Just automate how much reverb you want
Old 4 weeks ago
  #3
Gear Guru
 

Most mixers use a send on the vocal channel to send a portion of the vocal to the reverb unit. As MaztotheUla said, this knob - as well as nearly every other knob on your DAW mixer can be automated. Just have it turn up in the parts where you want more reverb and down where you want less.

Quote:
on the louder vocal parts, the vocal reverb gets more pronounced than on the quieter parts
there is a certain extent to which this is going to happen any way - i.e. if you sing louder you will probably 'notice' the reverb more - even if the actual reverb send remains static

another thing you could do is put an expander/gate after the send (or before the reverb unit). When a louder signal hits the gate, it opens up more. This will be more 'automatic', but a bit harder to control or fine-tune.

There are a few famous recordings where the engineer set up a few distant mics in the room with the singer. As the singer sang louder, gates on these mics would open up - giving a progressively bigger sound. For even greater effect, each of these room mics could could further be sent into an actual reverb unit.

But in general, with automation you can control the amount of pretty much anything in the DAW mixer, any time you want. So another thing you could do is instead of turning up the reverb "send" knob on the vocal channel, (the amount of reverb) you could automate (for example) the "size" parameter of the reverb unit itself (the character of the reverb) . i.e. - at that louder part, the reverb's 'virtual room' gets bigger.

I used to have a Death Metal band that always sang about, well you guessed it: "death". And whenever the word "death" appeared in the lyrics- which was quite often - they wanted extra reverb. Back in those days I did not have an automated console, so I had to learn where all the "deaths" were and crank the reverb manually.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Simpleton View Post
Maybe there's a term for it? How do you do it? When the vocal part gets louder, the reverb gets obviously louder. Listen to Nirvana's "All Apologies". on the louder vocal parts, the vocal reverb gets more pronounced than on the quieter parts. Is this a manual fader ride? Is it sending the vocals to reverb pre-compressor? There's a bunch of songs that do this, I can't think of any other examples at the moment but it's pretty popular on slower female vocal songs as well.
In very simplistic terms, all you do is this:
1. Insert a bus
2. Insert a reverb of your choice on that bus
3. Set the reverb to 100% wet
4. Insert a send on the track you want the reverb to be on
5. Automate the send level with envelopes to the desired amount for the sections you want higher and lower
Old 4 weeks ago
  #5
Gear Nut
Ok thanks for the replies guys! I figured it could be done with a manual or automated fader ride, as I mentioned. Just wondering if there was a set-and-forget type way to do it instead, though, like through side-chaining or something? Sounds like it's a fader trick after all! Appreciate it!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #6
Quote:
Sounds like it's a fader trick after all! Appreciate it!
No, its send automation. The Fader for the track will make the dry vocal louder, not just make the reverb louder. It will make the dry vocal louder! so the reverb will not increase in the wet and dry percentage.
Quote:
Just wondering if there was a set-and-forget type way to do it instead, though, like through side-chaining or something?
how would something like side chaining know to increase the wet effect of a reverb? If would have to be automated so its told when you want the reverb louder.

No one, not even a program can know when you want to have a reverb louder, unless you manually program it . Hence automation. Its easy, it can take you less than 5 minutes to automate some ending to vocals.

Mixing is work, yea? is 5 minutes too much? i spend more time whipping my butt
Old 4 weeks ago
  #7
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simpleton View Post
Ok thanks for the replies guys! I figured it could be done with a manual or automated fader ride, as I mentioned. Just wondering if there was a set-and-forget type way to do it instead, though, like through side-chaining or something?
As I said yesterday, you can do the set-and-forget with gates.

Either progressively gating ever more distant room mics, so as the volume comes up the gates open farther and farther away. Or just gating the reverb sends directly in the mixer the same way.

from SOS

Quote:
Heroic Vocals:
The basic routing setup for the Hansa reverb technique on David Bowie’s ‘Heroes’: a vocal is sent to two gated reverbs which mimic room mics, each placed at a different distance from the source. The more distant‑sounding reverb’s gate has a higher threshold than the other, so that the loudest parts of the vocal trigger more ‘room’.
The basic routing setup for the Hansa reverb technique on David Bowie’s ‘Heroes’: a vocal is sent to two gated reverbs which mimic room mics, each placed at a different distance from the source. The more distant‑sounding reverb’s gate has a higher threshold than the other, so that the loudest parts of the vocal trigger more ‘room’.An interesting technique, often referred to as the Hansa reverb (after the studio in which it was devised), can be heard on the David Bowie track ‘Heroes’. Producer Tony Visconti rigged three mics in the studio to capture Bowie’s vocals, each placed increasingly distant from Bowie. Mics two and three were processed with a gate, the thresholds set such that the louder Bowie sang, the more, and more distant, the room sound added to the mix. You can easily mimic this with reverb and gate plug‑ins: just create two separate reverb send effects, and place a gate on each one. Then, tweak the gate thresholds so that the vocal part trips the outermost gate only on the loudest parts, and the middle mic is not triggered by the quietest parts. You can then play with the stereo placement of the reverb returns to taste
.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #8
Lives for gear
Eventide's Tverb emulates the Visconti's Hansa Heroes trick. Worth getting when on sale - but otherwise pricey for what it is. But in reality if Visconti had access to the flexibility/automation we have now, I doubt if he would have gone to the trouble he did on Heroes to obtain an extra stage of material loudness dependant reverb.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #9
Gear Nut
Yeah that's a cool trick! I definitely learned a few things. Thanks again guys!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #10
Lives for gear
 
skillz335's Avatar
A side chain would work too, in conjuction with a second reverb. And even with a gate. To really tweek in the verb. And of coarse, the gate depends on how you choose to set the verb to begin with.
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