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#190286 - 01/14/13 01:56 AM [Off-Topic] Mono or Stereo Reverb on Vocals
PgFantastic Offline

Registered: 02/11/05
Posts: 2646
Loc: Kentucky
How do you guys insert reverb, On the vocal track chain itself, or do you create an Fx Channel just for the reverb and then send it to the vocal track? Do you use a Stereo Reverb or a Mono on the vocal? What do you use on your vocal chain? All input is welcome!
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Psalm 57:7 My heart, O God, is steadfast, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music.

#190287 - 01/14/13 10:31 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Mono or Stereo Reverb on Vocals [Re: PgFantastic]
ROG Offline

Registered: 12/12/11
Posts: 2614
Loc: York, England
This is one where I think everyone will have their own way of working, but ...

For me, if I want a reverb which is only going to be used for one vocal track, I'll put it on a track insert. Usually though, I'll have several tracks of vocals and it's easier, plus less processor intensive to put it on an effects buss and send the individual tracks to it.

Much of the time I prefer to use a delay with feedback for vocals and if there is more than one track, putting it on an effects buss ensures that all the sends get the same delay and feedback.

I usually use reverb in stereo because it sounds bigger, but delay in mono because I don't like stereo bouncing on vocals.

Other than an upward limiter, that's all I use on vocals.

Hope this helps.


#190288 - 01/14/13 12:00 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Mono or Stereo Reverb on Vocals [Re: ROG]
Mac Offline

Registered: 05/29/00
Posts: 38502
Loc: Chesapeake, Virginia USA
Much depends on the type of reverb in use, whose plugin and how it is designed if it is a plugin and not hardware, but even hardware reverb types have their various sounds and idiosyncracies, too, then there is the specified genre and overall sound of the project, whether or not you are trying to put ambiance or a "room" on just a lead vocal or whether or not you are trying to apply a particular amount of ambience or room on the entire thing, whether or not it is perhaps a guitar track, etc. etc. etc.

Learning all you can about the frequencies within the sonic spectrum, the delay times, being able to decipher different reverb tails when you hear them and whether or not they are workable within the mix you have is time well spent. For that is the job.

At the same time, one should experiment. For there is nothing like the actual manipulation and experimentation for this learning curve. I have learned more from the bad moves than the good moves.


These ahould be a part of your arsenal.

The Reference Recordings are simply your collection of recordings that exhibit the style, genre, instrumentation (basically speaking), performance, "sheen" and overall technical superiority that you are going after with your own mixes.

Keep them separated from your full collection.

Play them over your recording monitoring system often.

Get familiar with what the particular sound you desire sounds like when played through your system.


This one is important, avoid the urge to turn up the Volume.

Loudness may be good at a party, it is the kiss of death in your studio.

For one thing, just about anything and everything will kind of sound "good" at high sound pressure levels.

For another, critical listening will be hard to impossible to do when the SPLs are cranked up. The ear fatigue syndrome will kick in fast and hard, making it impossible to be able to hear well, anything of value. Exposure to music played at high SPLs for too long a time, well, it might take days of rest to be able to critically evaluate that which we are hearing.

And, finally, listening at those low, "conversational volume" levels, which only means a sound pressure level in which, if you had to hold a conversation with someone while the music is playing, you could, without unnecessarily having to raise your voice to be heard over the music, will be the way that you will be able to actually HEAR many things in and about the mix.

Low Level Monitoring, many anomalies will seem to "jump" out of a mix at you, whereas if the volume were to be higher, such things would be masked entirely. Such it is with Reverb as well as every other aspect of the recording.

Don't be overly concerned with how good it may sound when turned up loud, it has been my experience that anything that sounds great at those low levels will sound great when pumped up. The opposite is not the case.

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#190289 - 01/14/13 01:46 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Mono or Stereo Reverb on Vocals [Re: Mac]
ZeroZero Offline

Registered: 07/15/07
Posts: 1632
Loc: Bynar
Bear in mind in a real acoustic setting everyone shares the same 'reverb' - the hall. Everything other setting is a form of fx. IMO

Edited by ZeroZero (01/14/13 01:48 PM)
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#190290 - 01/14/13 02:49 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Mono or Stereo Reverb on Vocals [Re: ZeroZero]
Mac Offline

Registered: 05/29/00
Posts: 38502
Loc: Chesapeake, Virginia USA
Depends on what I'm trying to get across in the recording, ZeroZero.

For classical musics, the idea of creating one hall or actually using same, with various simple stereophonic pickup methods up to including a plastic human head with mics inside the earholes (!) may succeed in getting the actual sound of the ensemble in the hall, but often doesn't make a great warm and rich listen. Orchestras where close mic'ing and hall mic'ing have been used with multiple tracks often succeed better due to the added warmth created.

As for popular musics, musics with vocals, etc. the idea of a single hall with one basic reverb time doesn't hold up well when mixing either. Consider that a modern vocalist will ofen use a PA system with its own reverb, projecting into a hall that has yet its own ambience effect as well.

Today we are accustomed to listening to recordings that do not emulate the real acoustic situation but are much more able to become an easy listen with lots of things done to add to that experience. For example, those recordings where an intimate and not so loud singer is made to project overtop of many loud instruments by use of the Compressor.

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#190291 - 01/14/13 02:50 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Mono or Stereo Reverb on Vocals [Re: Mac]
Mac Offline

Registered: 05/29/00
Posts: 38502
Loc: Chesapeake, Virginia USA
Perhaps the first thing technical to know about recording and/or sound reinforcement is the Fletcher-Munson curve.

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