Logic Orchestral Template - routing question

BassClef

Senior Member
just a hobbyist... normally compose from an empty Logic session and add as I go. Now I have set up a template to try working that way.

The template is pretty simple with a little over a hundred hybrid and orchestral tracks. (don't need many as I use articulation sets) I used Logic "summing stacks" to create groups by orchestral section. (strings, brass, winds, etc) This Logic function creates a new aux track and changes the output of all selected tracts to that new aux track. The "summing stack" tracks of course output to the master (stereo out) bus.

Now for reverb, I have chosen to create additional aux tracks for each section, and have inserted SpacesII on each. At this point I can either:

1) send each orchestral section "summing stack" to their respective reverb aux tack. But this DOES NOT allow me to control reverb amounts for each instrument in that group. So I have chosen to:
2) send every instrument in the orchestral section "summing stack" to its group reverb, so I have full control. Each brass instrument for example outputs to the brass stack and sends to the brass reverb aux track.

so... the horns output to brass stack bus AND send to the brass reverb bus, then the brass stack bus AND brass reverb bus both output to the stereo out. (final mix) REPEAT FOR EACH INSTRUMENT TRACK

FINALLY THE QUESTION... Is this routing correct OR should the section reverb buses output back to the section stacks buses rather than directly to the final mix bus? Or does that matter?

Thanks and I hope the question is clear!
 

jcrosby

Senior Member
Even when I have things 'track-stacked' I send everything to discrete busses. Strings, brass, percussion, etc. This lets me deal with the reverb however I want... I can route the reverb to it or keep it isolated. This also makes the final mix pass a lot quicker as I can work from the aux stems... (Which can be added to the project page. My preferred method). If a project requires stems I scroll down to my auxes in the project window, solo, export....

If I understand your routing correctly you could work either way... I personally work the way I do as it lets me approach the signal flow like a schematic... All instrument groups go to a bus, reverbs for corresponding instruments can be sent to the bus if necessary. Ultimately it comes down to the genre, and what processing is going to wind up on that aux.

This lets me have string stacks and one off string instances wind up in the same place. (I tend to group my strings by developer, sum them, then route to a strings aux). You can submix your orchestra to an orchestral bus if you want as well, nothing wrong with that. Just be aware of how this can affect core spiking in Logic.

If anything from another instrument group shares the same reverb I typically send it to the mix bus, but creating a submix for all auxes is totally legit too. Really comes down to the way you work or what a given project may call for. Maybe some shared saturation on the reverbs/delays makes sense on a specific project, etc.

As far as your method, I personally don't like routing an fx aux back to a stack. Using the schematic analogy - I find this makes tracing signal flow messy, if not confusing. In the physical world this would be like running a really long cable to a device input, then routing the output all the way back up to where the signal feeding the input originated...

While there's no penalty per se, i find it winds up being a mental gymnastics exercise if I have to signal trace... My projects average 200-300 tracks, (some more..) Tracing signal flow with that method in a project that size is cumbersome. For me personally it's about signal flow staying as linear and traceable as possible. If I want to mess with it when I mix I don't have to stop and think about anything because everything more or less flows in a straight line.

Basically correct doesn't even enter the equation... You to decide what signal flow you want, if there weren't use cases for different signal flows each DAWs wouldn't give you routing flexibility... If your method works use it... Just be aware that when you start feeding auxes/buses into buses, (into a bus again - i.e. an orch bus) that drives up the single core hit in either scenario.
 
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BassClef

BassClef

Senior Member
Many thanks for the lengthy reply... very informative.

Yes. In my template, every instrument outputs to its group bus and sends to its group's reverb bus.

My main question is... Does it matter if the reverb buses (one for each group bus) output to the master bus or back to the group bus?
 

Dewdman42

Senior Member
No it doesn’t really matter but if you send the reverb back to the instrument bus then you can easily bring the level of a section up and down, including all the related reverb.
 

Will Wilson

All the gear, no idea
Aux Busses inside your summing stacks is what I do.

Strings Master Summing Bus -> Master
-> Strings Long -> Strings Master
-> Strings Short -> Strings Master
-> Strings FX -> Strings Master
-> Violin 1 A -> Strings Long etc etc
 

kmaster

Senior Member
Apologies for the potato quality of my handwriting/drawing skills/phone camera but this is how I set up my Logic template, more or less:

IMG_3288.jpeg
 
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BassClef

BassClef

Senior Member
Thanks kmaster. I started following your map, and ended up at the bakery over on 4th avenue. Great apple fritters!

Actually... I do not use VEP so this is a little confusing to me, but much appreciated.
 

kmaster

Senior Member
Thanks kmaster. I started following your map, and ended up at the bakery over on 4th avenue. Great apple fritters!

Actually... I do not use VEP so this is a little confusing to me, but much appreciated.
Hah!

You can ignore VEP, it just helps explain why things are routed the way they are.

Here's a simplified version:

IMG_3288.jpeg
 

IFM

Senior Member
Stumbled across this thread.

I'm tweaking a new large template I made in LPX and am trying to decide if I want to send to my main hall reverb from each instrument track or from a summing stack.

They way I have it set up is each food group (VCA folder) has a summing stack of a library in it.
Example, Woodwinds Folder --> VSL Woodwinds Summing Stack.

I initially set it up with a send per instrument so every VI gets routed to the reverb bus. This may be the way I want to keep it as I can get far better control over reverb than by just sending from the summing stack channel.

It is possible I will eliminate the summing stacks too as I have a workaround for folder nesting in LPX...either that or I just have a lot of VCA folder stacks...that method does allow for more color options as a side note.

Another option is more of a JP setup where each instrument is a stack (Piccolo, Flute, etc.) with selections from multiple libraries in each.
 
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BassClef

BassClef

Senior Member
Just a hobbyist here... I sort of followed the setup above this post. I have Logic summing stacks for my VIs, grouping them into strings, woods, brass, perc, keys, vocals, melodic perc, and synths. Then I have five different reverb sends, each set up to create different depths from the front of the stage for piano and vocal soloists to a balcony above the rear of stage for choir. (likely overkill and could use just three) Then I send all VIs in a stack to the appropriate reverb. So all strings to the same reverb, BUT I send them individually rather than sending the summing stack to the reverb. That way all strings route to the same reverb but I can adjust the amount of that reverb for each string instrument.
Right now I am using Spaces II and their reverb presets that use separate impulse responses for different stage positions. I then add a bit of an algorithmic reverb tail on the final mix bus. My old ears are not what they used to be, and I’m not sure I’m hearing much difference in my template over a similar setup using a single reverb (varying the amount) for all instruments rather than 5.
 
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IFM

Senior Member
@BassClef You aren't far off. After some more testing I'm sticking with pretty much the same setup, Track stack that contains Summing stacks, but each instrument gets the sends, not the sum.

Just remember not to touch the summing stack fader else you mess with your dry/wet ration. Would be cool if Volume was locked when track protecting. If running multiple outs for exporting purposes I still route it back to the sum but create an arrangement track from the mixer so that I can select it when doing the export.

EDIT: I decided to go back to a send on the subgroup for now. What I am still working out is how do I was to proceed with short string articulations. After some discussion with a mixing engineer I could go either way (all on one track or split apart). Often a line can have both long and short on one pass and since this is for an album, not for film it doesn't make a ton of sense. However, I do like to prep for future calls when I am asked to write some scores (and have one possibly on the line too).
 
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