Mixing Secrets For The Small Studio - Additional Resources

Chapter 17: Mixing With Delays

Workflow Demonstration Video

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Audio Files

(To download all WAV examples at once: 189MB ZIP)

  • Blend & Size Delays: Here are four versions of the same basic mix: a completely dry version ( Ex17.01: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), a version with blend delay applied ( Ex17.02: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), a version with size delay applied ( Ex17.03: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), and finally a version with both delays at once ( Ex17.04: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ). Compare these files with the corresponding reverb treatments (blend Ex17.05: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ; size Ex17.06: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ; both Ex17.07: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ) to get a feeling for the differences, and also have a listen to what all four effects can do together ( Ex17.08: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ).

  • Overall Reverb & Delay Effects Balances: Here are some examples which demonstrate the overall reverb/delay effects balances for several different mixes. The first is from Mix Rescue August 2009, where I used three reverbs and a delay for the final remix ( Ex17.09: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ). Here’s what it sounds like without those effects ( Ex17.10: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ). In Mix Rescue July 2010, I used two reverbs and three delays for the final remix ( Ex17.11: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), but this file has all of them muted ( Ex17.12: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ). There’s a more detailed example in Mix Rescue May 2010, where the final remix ( Ex17.13: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ) used blend reverb ( Ex17.14: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), size reverb ( Ex17.15: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), sustain reverb ( Ex17.16: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), size delay ( Ex17.17: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), and ping-pong delay ( Ex17.18: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ).

  • Ducking Delay: Let’s say I want to add a strong echo effect to the vocal part from Mix Rescue February 2009 ( Ex17.19: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ). Using a traditional delay effect clouds the vocal delivery itself ( Ex17.20: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ), whereas a ducking delay allows the vocals much more space, while still delivering the same obvious echo tail ( Ex17.21: WAV/MP3 play_arrow ).

  • Affordable Delay Plug-ins: I use Cockos’s freeware ReaDelayWindows logo for all my general-purpose delay effects, but Voxengo’s Tempo DelayMac logoWindows logo is a decent cross-platform alternative. For more coloristic freeware options, check out: Full Bucket Brigade DelayMac logoWindows logo; Interruptor Tape DelayWindows logo32‑bit & Bionic Supa DelayWindows logo32‑bit; Musical Entropy Spaceship DelayMac logoWindows logo; Saltline Lisc-delayWindows logo32‑bit; Shuttleplugs Shuttle EchoWindows logo32‑bit and Shuttle EcholetteWindows logo32‑bit; Smartelectronix Analog DelayMac logoWindows logo32‑bit; Sonic Anomaly Leet DelayMac logoWindows logo; Tesselode Cocoa DelayWindows logo; Ursa DSP LagrangeMac logoWindows logo; and Valhalla FreqEchoMac logoWindows logo. If you’re after an all-in-one ducking delay, here are a couple of freeware plug-ins for that: GVST GDuckDlyWindows logo, Smartelextronix MdspDuckDelayMac logoWindows logo32‑bit & Tesselode Cocoa DelayWindows logo. You can give any of your regular delays a bit vintage-style wow and flutter with Interruptor Wow & FlutterWindows logo32‑bit or Tesselode FlutterbirdWindows logo.

  • Affordable Pitched Resonator Plug-ins: I first came into contact with pitched resonators via the Resonant Chords patch of Lexicon’s studio effects units, and although this effect is now available in software form as part of the PCM Native EffectsMac logoWindows logo bundle, it’s quite an expensive option if pitched resonance is all you’re looking for. For a more affordable option, try LMDSP SuperchordMac logoWindows logo or Stillwell Audio TinManMac logoWindows logo, although with the latter you’ll need to use multiple single-pitch instances to achieve a similar level of functionality. The best freeware pitched resonator I know of is Melda MCombMac logoWindows logo, but some other fun options are Decade Bridge SpeculumMac logoWindows logo, Mutagene Macomate88Windows logo32‑bit, and Wok Wave ResomWindows logo32‑bit.