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Old 19th May 2016
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I use compression, classic, attack / release - depends on the envelope of the sound, just by my taste. Sometimes i use a limiter, if i want to kill the transients, sometimes i need it. I sidechain, but not always with the kick, could be the snare or another short sound. A bit of distortion on the synths won`t harm too but i don't pay that big attention, compared to the drums. I would rather have a synth / sample, that sounds great by itself and doesn't need to be "fixed" too much. Samples - often I add some bit reduction, to add some harmonics in the high range. Sometimes I would sample from a source like Youtube or a very lo-fi mp3, so a bit of bit reduction makes the sound less "rounded" as usually a very compressed sound would be. Reverb / Delay - yes of course, now a bit more than before. I used to work mostly on headphones and at that time everything sounded too "wet" to me. But i found I couldn't hear any of the effect on speakers. The reverb can add a nice body and dimension to the sound. Sometimes i would add a reverb on the kick or the bass, which suppose to be wrong. Now i make the sounds a tiny bit more wet. I would apply them differently, aux-send or directly on the channel, depends if i want to play with the dry/wet control for more instant result or the send control, in order to keep the delay/ reverb tail still sounding after i cut out the sound, going into it. The bass- often i separate it to a mid/high and low range, using the Audio Effect Rack in Ableton and process the split result differently. Compression / reverb or other stereo widening effect on the mid range, side chain on the sub -bass. Sine wave bass - a bit of distortion, otherwise you can hear it on a smartphone Also don't underestimate mid/side processing, some Brainworks plugins are great for that, I think Waves have some good m/s tools too. Generally i don't have any genius solution for synths, just trying different effects and I use them if i like them. Diva and M1 are amazing! I need to try the Rob Papen synths! Ah, its not a bad idea if you record some synths through analog guitar pedals. I do it once in a while and my plugins sound more analog than analog ones You can try some guitar effect VST emulations, they also do a great job!
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