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Side-chained Reverb for Smoother & Cleaner Effect


This is a cool trick that happens a lot in Pop Music, especially ballads where you might want your sound to be really wet and legato, however you don’t want it to be drowned in a cave echo. Let’s go over the steps.

First of all, this is killer when applied to vocals. However, I don’t have any vocals on this particular song I’m messing around with and decided to give it a shot on a lead synth. The results are as effective, in my opinion.

Once you find a reverb setting that you like, go ahead an insert a compressor before the reverb. You could also insert that compressor after, and the sound will be slightly different, try both ways and see which one fits your track best. Then, active the side-chain feature on your compressor and feed the signal you’d like to apply reverb to as your side chain source. Then set the attack very fast on the compressor and the release at a medium setting. Bring out the gain on the compressor in order to hear the effect better. And finally adjust levels to taste. And that’s it!

Check out the tutorial for a quick demonstration of this technique. Do you have any other ideas on what to side-chain next and why? Leave it in the comments below!

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