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Old 15th November 2009
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Originally Posted by aof21 View Post
yes, I think that's pretty common.

And to second what most other people are saying, EQing reverbs is pretty essential. Some reverb plug ins have eq capacity built in, or else you can just slap an eq plug after the reverb.

Also, just to make sure, you are running your reverbs on an aux track (or "bus" track) and sending from your original track, right? That should be SOP.

If you are running the reverb on the same track as the original signal, aim for between 10 and 20 percent wet (obviously this greatly depends on many factors.... but....) Also, play around a lot with the different reverb settings to find what works for that particular track.

One trick I've found is to do it like this. Put the reverb on an aux track and put your aux send at unity gain. Put the reverb return track also at unity gain and make sure your reverb is at 100% wet. This should result in way more reverb than you will usually end up using in the mix. But leave it up at that level and then play around with the reverb settings (decay time / room size / ER level / diffusion /EQ, etc) until you get the reverb to sound like its good, just a little too much. I've found that if you can get the reverb to sound reasonable when it's up that loud, then generally when you turn it down it will sound really good. But I find it necessary to have it up higher at first to get the settings right.

3 more tips:
1. This may be obvious to anyone with a basic understanding of reverb, but most of the time "Decay time" is going to be the most important setting. I find it's often difficult when you want "less" reverb to determine if you want a shorter decay or a lower overall level. For the type of effect the OP is describing, I'm leaning toward a long decay reverb, turned down lower in the mix and with the type of HF and LF cuts that have been described.
2. Pay particular attention to your "Early Reflection" level. This is sort of an oversimplified explanation, but a higher Early Reflection setting will generallly make your reverb sound more "boxy" or "roomy" -- more like its in a real room. Again, for the type of reverb you are describing and for what I find it's generally necessary for a lot of electronic music ambiance reverbs, I lean towards less ER, often times 0 ER.
3. Sometimes slapping a compressor BEFORE your reverb on the aux send can help. Sometimes you'll find that certain transients will trigger a sort of "pop" in the reverb and so you'll hear a singular reverb trail from that one transient that stands out in the mix. Putting a compressor on the aux send signal can help smooth that out.
Thanks for all of this advice - very helpful!!

So the general consensus is that genreally I should high pass the reverb itself, so I high pass at about 100hz.. does this sound right? Also, if I want the reverb to sit back in the mix I low pass the fx itself at about 5khz?

Why is it better to have the reverb on a aux bus, aside form the obvious reason of cutting down on cpu and having a consistent reverb across all parts of my song? What do you mean by unity gain? 100%?

I'm using Waves IR-1 and as far as settings go, I install a long-dark ambient reverb for pretty much all parts other than percussion, to which I use a drums plate setting on my reverb. I dont tinker with the room size too much after I've installed the presets. The only setting I will adjust is the "reverb time" which I am assuming is the same as decay? For drums I have it at about 1.0s and for all else I have it at 3.0s.

Your tip suggestions:

1. Yes I do like the longer reverb tail. As far LF and HF cuts go, my knowledge of this is that LF cutting is to make sure the reverb doesnt muddy up the mix.. and a HF cut to allow the reverb to sit back in the mix?

2. My knowledge of early reflection is very foggy.. Is this defined as reverb being applied to the initial part of the sound? On the IR-1 reverb plugin, the ER default setting is 0.0 and pre-delay is 0.0. Also, the "Tail" default settig is 0.0

3. Some people say put compressor on before the reverb and some people suggest a side-chain after the reverb. Does ot make sense to do both?