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Author Topic: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?  (Read 2899 times)

Diminished Triad

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Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« on: March 17, 2015, 06:39:59 am »

I don't have a quality rack that I can use to add reverb or delay to my band's vocals.  We have gone between using a TC Helicon reverb effects box intended to be used on stage by an individual singer at that end.....and we've tried running a two channel rack that provided a reverb effect that we sent out of one of our aux channels to the singer(s) needing the effect at any given time.  Using an aux send to add reverb has more things going on then I can poinpoint.....but I can feel it and can hear it.  Clearly an area I know very little about.  The problem is if we leave it to each singer to set his/her reverb they are in the worst position to determine during a gig what they need....and also in the worst position to set their effects because they are in the middle of a performance.   On the other hand....if I set it from the board and we are running it as an effect (insert) and using an aux send to deliver the effect......just doesn't sound like the highest quality possible. 

If I'm correct that this is not the way it's to be done.....can you give me a few recommendations for great reverb racks that would actually be able to handle maybe 4 or more vocals?  As I said, ....I don't think reverb is supposed to be sent through an aux send channel but I stand to be corrected if I'm wrong about this one.  One of the smaller band sound board engineers set it up for me and it just doesn't feel or sound right.  Thanks for any advice or specific recommendations you might have for a great reverb/delay rack and how best to use such an effect.  Mike
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Fletcher

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2015, 10:37:50 am »

If you're going to add reverb / FX on a channel insert you'll need 4 different units for 4 different vocals... which is extra stuff to carry, and extra stuff to worry about.  That said, performers have entirely different FX requirements from the monitor system [as in what they hear] to what is appropriate for the house.

The usual method for adding FX to vocals is to run one [or two] FX units that are fed by "aux sends" on the desk to the outboard FX units.  The FX units are returned to their own channels and the FX levels are blend to taste.  This will mean that if you have 4x vocals, they can all share the same FX devices and the net result will sound considerably more homogenous than if each singer runs through their own FX unit(s).

Make sense?
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CN Fletcher

mwagener wrote on Sat, 11 September 2004 14:33
We are selling emotions, there are no emotions in a grid


"Recording engineers are an arrogant bunch
If you've spent most of your life with a few thousand dollars worth of musicians in the studio, making a decision every second and a half... and you and  they are going to have to live with it for the rest of your lives, you'll get pretty arrogant too.  It takes a certain amount of balls to do that... something around three"
Malcolm Chisholm

Diminished Triad

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2015, 04:01:23 pm »

Yes....thanks Fletcher!   Mike
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Tim Halligan

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2015, 02:41:27 am »

Basic rule of thumb:

Amplitude/envelope effects: insert in the channel.

Time-based/modulation-based effects: send and separate return.

HTH

Cheers,
Tim
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An analogue brain in a digital world.

Diminished Triad

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2015, 06:54:32 am »

Thanks Tim....very interesting.   I'll try and read more about that and get this down.  Mike
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Fletcher

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2015, 09:25:37 am »

I never thought of it that way... but its exactly how I've approached it for the last 40 years [shit, I'm getting old].  Things like "channel compressors" or noise gates [lawd I hate those things!] are inserted on the channel... delays / reverbs / etc. on "aux send"s [mostly because I would like the option to using those devices on multiple signals].

Peace
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CN Fletcher

mwagener wrote on Sat, 11 September 2004 14:33
We are selling emotions, there are no emotions in a grid


"Recording engineers are an arrogant bunch
If you've spent most of your life with a few thousand dollars worth of musicians in the studio, making a decision every second and a half... and you and  they are going to have to live with it for the rest of your lives, you'll get pretty arrogant too.  It takes a certain amount of balls to do that... something around three"
Malcolm Chisholm

jaykadis

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2015, 12:28:44 pm »

I gave up on trying to use reverb on live vocals. It just seems to muddy them up and fight with the natural early reflections in the club/hall. A single repeat delay seems to work better - the performers don't get a dry monitor but the audience can understand the lyrics better.

Fletcher

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2015, 12:58:08 pm »

Yup.

That, and the 80's are quite over so its no longer in "fashion" to add reverb to most vocals [possible exception being backing vocals that suffer from "marginal tuning"].

Peace
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CN Fletcher

mwagener wrote on Sat, 11 September 2004 14:33
We are selling emotions, there are no emotions in a grid


"Recording engineers are an arrogant bunch
If you've spent most of your life with a few thousand dollars worth of musicians in the studio, making a decision every second and a half... and you and  they are going to have to live with it for the rest of your lives, you'll get pretty arrogant too.  It takes a certain amount of balls to do that... something around three"
Malcolm Chisholm

Jim Williams

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Re: Reverb: Where is effect most effective?
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2015, 11:40:29 am »

Touring with Stevie Wonder in the 1980's we would bring our top-o-line digital reverb units with us on the road. Brit Row/Maryland Sound had a new Lexy 224 XL so we didn't bring that.

Instead we lugged the EMT 250 digital reverb along to every show. It was used on the lead vocals, but I never really heard it in the hockey rinks as the acoustic reverb washed it all out. I do hear it on the live show tapes we made.
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