here's a tip!!!

I was just thinking how I wish I could apply reverb to a track during monitoring without dealing with the latency inherent with the LIVE feature. my computer does pretty well, but a few good reverbs will throw it’s latency out the window. I thought I’d have to get a separate reverb hardware DSP and use that to monitor reverb with for drums and vocals and such, but I got to thinking, how can I use the latency to my advantage? I don’t want to buy another piece of gear SOLELY for monitor mixes…

And so I figured it out! :)

I can use the delayed LIVE track as the Wet signal! That’s right, I’ll just use the latency instead of working around it.

Try this example…
you’ve got a vocal you want to record with some lush reverb on it, but the singer is complaining that his voice is too delayed…

so you turn on the 0-latency monitoring in your soundcard’s mixer (usually a just outputs the input without running it through your software) but now he can hear his dry voice and his effected voice but they sound funny…the dry signal in the LIVE track is still delayed from the dry signal from the soundcard, and is creating a flange effect in addition to the reverb…

SO!!! you set the reverb on the LIVE track to 100% wet, and turn down the pre-delay. Use the 0-latency monitoring as your dry signal. The latency for the plugin in LIVE mode automatically gives you a pre-delay, and since it’s only WET, there’s no funny flanging going on.

Now you simply set the LIVE track’s volume to taste and you can hear the voice with reverb and NOT WORRY about the latency.

you can do the same with delay, use the latency as the initial 10-20ms or so, and turn the delay to 100 % wet and set to taste.

obviously this won’t work with compressor or EQ or other inline only effects, but it’ll save me from having to buy an external processor to hear reverb on the vocals and drums when I record.

The ONLY drawback, is you have to either turn up the dry signal or copy the track with no reverb to hear it as a normal mix when you are only playing back. small price to pay though :)

have fun!

Right – reverb doesn’t have to be “on the dime”, it can be delayed a bit and still sound great.

IMHO, I feel it’s best to learn to track dry; reverb and echo are a bit like singing in the shower; they can cover up your mistakes. Also lowers the bar technically, so you can concentrate more on the music and less on engineering. But there are plenty of true greats who work better with juice, because it helps them relax.

BTW, CPU power is pretty much unrelated to plugin latency. You get latency because of the signal processing algorithm needing more data points (subsequent samples) before it can spit out a result for a given sample. That is, to spit out the data for sample #N, it needs to have sample numbers N through N+10 or something like that. So, you will find that different reverbs have different latencies. The n-Track reverb is very low latency, I believe. SIR can be either extreme, depending on which impulse file you use. (Most are pretty high latency.)

I recently noticed that N V4 displays the current latency in the lower right hand corner. Too bad I had to revert back to 3.3!

I suppose I should have been a little more specific :) I know that latency is related to the plugin, but I meant that if I run too many tracks in LIVE mode, I have to crank the buffers up, or n-track will stutter and in my case I usually have to reboot my computer to recover…

Quote (learjeff @ April 16 2005,09:26)
Right -- reverb doesn't have to be "on the dime", it can be delayed a bit and still sound great.

IMHO, I feel it's best to learn to track dry; reverb and echo are a bit like singing in the shower; they can cover up your mistakes.

So true Jeff, reverb and echo can also take the sweetness out of great tones that you might have captued on the take.

69? Good idea! There are those who need to hear a little texture while recording to get into it. Thanks for the tip!

What happens when you add the effects to an aux channell then send the track being recorded to that aux? Anyone try or use that successfully?

Tom, that would work too. HOWEVER, you’d need some way to kill the volume in the track you’re recording so that you don’t hear it as an echo (delayed by latency). Remember that we’re monitoring the dry signal directly (either by soundcard loopback or using a mixer), so any LIVE mode output from the track being recorded would be delayed, creating an echo. To deal with this, you could set the aux send to pre-fader and set the fader to zero. This is something you might want to do if you were recording several vocalists at once and wanted the same reverb on them all, in the monitors. Might also be applicable when recording a drum kit.

Right, early reflections and pre delay. That has to be the area to look for creating 0 latency. Or at least a form of it, to give the illusion of 0 latency maybe, then have the program calulate to position when creating the file? :cool: