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Panning, creating 'stereo' from mono
Old 19th October 2013
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
iz_thewiz's Avatar
Panning, creating 'stereo' from mono

I make sample based music and a lot of my samples are mono (drums, instruments, vocals, bass, etc).

When I get to the mix down phase, instead of having a big chunk of mono information with little depth in a stereo field, I try to give each sample it's own space. Assuming bass and kick is centred, my primary sample (mono) will now feed reverb (usually stereo reverb, or mono for certain instruments) and delays (generally mono, might automate delay pan or use an auto-pan plugin on delay return). These effects alone have given me twice the amount of depth I had when my sample was mono centred, or panned slightly L/R.

I've also had good results by panning reverb or delay returns to the opposite side of the source (eg: sample panned L 25, effect return panned R 25).

Are there any other tips that will provide a subtle approach to generating a false or phantom stereo from a mono source?

Slutz
Old 19th October 2013
  #2
Registered User
A lot of psuedo stereo tricks ruin mono compatibility. For example, you can get amazing stereo simply by cloning a track and inverting the polarity of one and hard panning left and right. Except it will completely null when mono'd - "hey, where did the vocal go?".

One trick that won't do this is to use inverted EQs. With a single band you could, for example, send the lows to the left and highs to the right. Or with multiple bands you can create a comb filter on one side and the opposite comb filter on the other. You can be as subtle or as aggressive as you like, but they will all sum to no effect at all in mono.

Modulation and pitch shifting effects can give you wide stereo which collapses to a slightly phasey mono. If you can make it sound good in mono first and then spread it out in stereo you should be ok. Using a very slow LFO - maybe 4 bars - you can avoid any wobbly modulation sound.
Old 19th October 2013
  #3
Cool tip for inverted EQ, I'll give that a go.
There's nothing wrong with mono though, no need to change to stereo!
Old 19th October 2013
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
iz_thewiz's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
A lot of psuedo stereo tricks ruin mono compatibility. For example, you can get amazing stereo simply by cloning a track and inverting the polarity of one and hard panning left and right. Except it will completely null when mono'd - "hey, where did the vocal go?".

One trick that won't do this is to use inverted EQs. With a single band you could, for example, send the lows to the left and highs to the right. Or with multiple bands you can create a comb filter on one side and the opposite comb filter on the other.
I tried this technique the other day, but this would probably benefit for overall mono compatibility I would assume. It sounds quite odd in stereo, unless you also inverted that source's reverb/delays/etc as well.
Old 19th October 2013
  #5
A very nice plug-in you might enjoy for this is SPL's Vitalizer.
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