Signal flow for live modular performance

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drusnoise
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Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by drusnoise » Fri Jan 17, 2020 4:15 am

Hello all,
Curious to get your perspective on signal flow/effects processing for live performance. Have my first 30 minute live modular techno set coming up in February and prepping my setup.

I am using the WMD Performance Mixer which gives a lot of flexibility on signal flow. I have compression and WAV recorder at the end of the chain as master send/return, using Mimephon and Bastl Dark Matte on Aux send/return 1 & 2

A couple of questions:
1. Do you tend to put reverb at the end of the chain so affecting the whole mix? or as an insert to only affect certain channels?
2. Does flowing through multiple processing (e.g. send --> reverb --> compressor --> recorder --> return --> mix out) affect audio quality of the final mix out? Wondering if there is degradation after X number of ins/outs

Any thoughts/experiences much appreciated!!! Thank you in advance.

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BananaPlug
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by BananaPlug » Sat Jan 18, 2020 8:30 am

Answers
1. Either way, though reverb at the end is pretty common. Overuse of reverb is very common.
2. Strictly speaking, there has to be some impact but it’s not enough to matter.
Try stuff. See what you like. I generally apply each effect to a specific source but I’ll also varying amounts of several sources to the reverb. Also depends on practical issues and whether it’s live or track by track production.

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Americangrapefruit
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by Americangrapefruit » Thu Jan 30, 2020 3:59 pm

In my current setup I run my 2 or 3 voices through their various delays / filters then out to a small Mackie 8ch mixer. My Erbe-Verb is routed through the mixer as an Aux Return. That way I can add reverb to individual voices as I see fit (a whoooole bunch on Rings, but none on a big fat bassline, etc.). Hope this helps!

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WaveRider
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by WaveRider » Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:32 pm

...I use an external mixer with 2 fx sends. 1 send on echo, 1 send on reverb. Patched into external rackmounted fx. Love that.

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BenA718
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by BenA718 » Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:08 am

drusnoise wrote:
Fri Jan 17, 2020 4:15 am

A couple of questions:
1. Do you tend to put reverb at the end of the chain so affecting the whole mix? or as an insert to only affect certain channels?
I use three reverbs in my current setup. For my wavetable drone, there is a BOSS Space Echo pedal, I have a TC Electronic Hall of Fame on the snare drum, and a BOSS RV-500.
My drums/percussion are sub-mixed and aside from the snare are run dry.
The drone runs through the Space Echo and the RV-500.
The RV-500 is on an aux send and it has my modular, live synths, and live guitar all running through it. Instead of returning it to the mixer, however, I run a wet/dry signal that I can blend to FoH.

2. Does flowing through multiple processing (e.g. send --> reverb --> compressor --> recorder --> return --> mix out) affect audio quality of the final mix out? Wondering if there is degradation after X number of ins/outs
Technically the answer is yes, but I would be more worried about signal:noise more than anything else. The only way to know is to test it out yourself and decide where the acceptable amount of loss is. I use one big stereo reverb and delay on an aux send and not returning it because I don’t like the sound of the return vs a wet/dry setup. YMMV.
Any thoughts/experiences much appreciated!!! Thank you in advance.
I hope this helps!

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Martebar
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by Martebar » Thu Feb 06, 2020 10:08 am

I have never managed to make a master reverb sound good, the kick always lose a lot of its impact.
I would say use it on a send channel

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Pelsea
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by Pelsea » Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:23 pm

I only add reverb to some voices-- I also have a little Mackie with a send/return that I route to the laptop. (Very handy, those little Mackies!) Then I use plugs or Max patches for the effect I need. I have an Erb-verb in the rack, which is generally use for one voice at a time.
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ersatzplanet
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Re: Signal flow for live modular performance

Post by ersatzplanet » Fri Feb 07, 2020 1:54 pm

Depending on the type of music you make, reverb can be selective or at the end of the chain on everything. If you have drums and percussive sounds, you may want to isolate them from the reverb to make them cleaner. Remember you already have reverb in the actual room you are paying in. for overall reverb, always keep it at low levels unless you are doing ambient or non-melodic music where the reverb becomes part of the actual voice itself.
Like others have posted, reverb is often over used in live shows. People use verb in their studio and it sounds great, but bring those same settings into a hall or decent room that is making reverb on its own, and suddenly everything is muddy. Also it may sound great in the monitors on stage too because they are close. Listen in the empty room during sound check and you will get a better idea.
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