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Should i pan orchestra instruments before reverb or after?

Ailitar

New Member
Usually i try to imagine how real orchestra should be positioning in real room so i am panning track and then i mix it with reverb on a send track. But what if i put reverb on insert channel and then i try to panning, it would feels different. Like if it was 50 on the left i could not hear nothing on the right side. It`s same if i resample a midi track including a reverb and other fx to audio and then i try to panning it without another reverb on a send track. I hope you will catch my idea. How to do it correct?
 

X-Bassist

Senior Member
Reverb should always be on it’s own track with sends from your tracks on the input and the stereo reverb feeding your main bus (or subgroup bus). You don’t want your room reverb to pan, but stay in stereo or surround. Then you mix the sends to taste.

But if your up for a cheap alternate, try the free panagement.

It is suppose to be inserted on each track and will do spacial placement plus verb and delay, but I usually turn that off for my own. It can really help to make placement easier and more realistic.

It works so well I instantly bought the full version (only $40).
 

JohnG

Senior Member
suggestions if you want a "natural" reverb:

1. pan instruments
2. never pan reverb
3. use sends, not inserts, for reverb unless you are trying for some unusual effect.

Of course, you can do anything you want, but if you want "regular," this is what I'd suggest. Have fun!
 

Tralen

Member
Reverb should always be on it’s own track with sends from your tracks on the input and the stereo reverb feeding your main bus (or subgroup bus). You don’t want your room reverb to pan, but stay in stereo or surround. Then you mix the sends to taste.

But if your up for a cheap alternate, try the free panagement.

It is suppose to be inserted on each track and will do spacial placement plus verb and delay, but I usually turn that off for my own. It can really help to make placement easier and more realistic.

It works so well I instantly bought the full version (only $40).
Love Panagement.

I will mention that you can use it just for early reflections. Also, if you have mono compatibility problems, you can disable the delay panning with the little knob to the right of the positioning field.
 

shawnsingh

Senior Member
+1 to the basic rule of panning before reverb and not panning reverb.

But from your initial post, it seems you might already understand that. Are you asking about how to pan if reverb is unavoidably baked into the audio track?

One thing you can try is delay panning instead of traditional level panning. i.e. finding a plugin that can cause a delay between the L and R channels. Try to find one that can control sample-accurate, or sub-millisecond - one millisecond is already a strong effect for this. This delay effect can help change the perceived location without reducing L and R levels.

More generally - convolution reverb in particular is a linear audio process (algorithmic reverb may not be, but you could still try the following). Adding some kind of early reflection simulator might be a linear process too. Usually wisdom would be to use the early reflection simulator first, then pass the result to reverb. But the cool thing is that if you have a sequence of linear operations in the math, you can switch the ordering of them and the result is the same. So if you had a convolution reverb that is baked into your audio track and you cannot remove it, it might still work to add an early reflection simulator afterwards, and use that to try getting a panning effect.
 

G_Erland

Member
Reverb should always be on it’s own track with sends from your tracks on the input and the stereo reverb feeding your main bus (or subgroup bus). You don’t want your room reverb to pan, but stay in stereo or surround. Then you mix the sends to taste.

But if your up for a cheap alternate, try the free panagement.

It is suppose to be inserted on each track and will do spacial placement plus verb and delay, but I usually turn that off for my own. It can really help to make placement easier and more realistic.

It works so well I instantly bought the full version (only $40).
There are some online lessons with, I believe his name is Dennis Sands, moviescore mixer - he has this thing where he sendes everything to two different reverbs and then pans those hard. If i got it right. Any experience with this, if so?
 

G_Erland

Member
Reverb should always be on it’s own track with sends from your tracks on the input and the stereo reverb feeding your main bus (or subgroup bus). You don’t want your room reverb to pan, but stay in stereo or surround. Then you mix the sends to taste.

But if your up for a cheap alternate, try the free panagement.

It is suppose to be inserted on each track and will do spacial placement plus verb and delay, but I usually turn that off for my own. It can really help to make placement easier and more realistic.

It works so well I instantly bought the full version (only $40).
There are some online lessons with, I believe his name is Dennis Sand, moviescore mixer - he has this thing where he sendes everything to two different reverbs and then pans those hard. If i got it right. Any experience with this, if so
 
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Ailitar

New Member
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+1 to the basic rule of panning before reverb and not panning reverb.

But from your initial post, it seems you might already understand that. Are you asking about how to pan if reverb is unavoidably baked into the audio track?

One thing you can try is delay panning instead of traditional level panning. i.e. finding a plugin that can cause a delay between the L and R channels. Try to find one that can control sample-accurate, or sub-millisecond - one millisecond is already a strong effect for this. This delay effect can help change the perceived location without reducing L and R levels.

More generally - convolution reverb in particular is a linear audio process (algorithmic reverb may not be, but you could still try the following). Adding some kind of early reflection simulator might be a linear process too. Usually wisdom would be to use the early reflection simulator first, then pass the result to reverb. But the cool thing is that if you have a sequence of linear operations in the math, you can switch the ordering of them and the result is the same. So if you had a convolution reverb that is baked into your audio track and you cannot remove it, it might still work to add an early reflection simulator afterwards, and use that to try getting a panning effect.
Ty. Yes, I was interested how mixing engineer pan a samples. i guess Mostly time mixing engineers get an already panning in space samples of orchestra. For example a piano track, already wet, it has "reverb is unavoidably baked into the audio track", but if i want to pan that track to the left it will lose the stereo image. i am confusing at this point a bit.
 
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shawnsingh

Senior Member
Yeah it's an interesting question, but I think the real answer is that people try their best to avoid panning things which are already wet, as much as possible. :)
 

JohnG

Senior Member
Ty. Yes, I was interested how mixing engineer pan a samples. i guess Mostly time mixing engineers get an already panning in space samples of orchestra. For example a piano track, already wet, it has "reverb is unavoidably baked into the audio track", but if i want to pan that track to the left it will lose the stereo image. i am confusing at this point a bit.
I think there is a bit of muddle here -- not you @Ailitar but the overall question. If you have Shawn Murphy or Dennis Sands on the job, most likely it's a live orchestra, so my comments are in that context:

1. Already some "room" around the recording -- Most/all projects that would involve an engineer like Dennis Sands are also going to be comprised predominantly of live players recorded in a rather large space. Therefore, the "audio location" of the instruments is already decided, to a significant extent. You already have the piano / oboe / French Horns located somewhere in the hall / studio, so the engineer already has chosen where that sound sits. You can arrange the orchestra in non-traditional seating and you can record each section separately. Nevertheless, it doesn't happen accidentally or haphazardly -- the engineer seats the French Horns in one spot, the cellos in another - intentionally. Even if you're doing something non-traditional, you make a lot of choices about location with the initial recording setup.

2. Don't Fight Too Hard Against the Sound (unless it's intentional) -- Each studio player has an instrument that can cost many, many thousands.* Each player has worked for many years, often decades, to master the technique and sound of his or her instrument. Engineers like Dennis S. have decades of experience choosing and placing microphones, working the board, and paying attention to the way sounds interact -- how they reflect off the back wall, how much space it takes for the brass to do that "bloom" they do, how much isolation / baffling they want. They already have decided so many things, and they generally know what you want from listening to your demos or hearing the first pass. It is common for the engineer to adjust mic positioning early in the session to refine it.

Plus it's probably at least 5.1

Shawn Murphy Doesn't Work at My House

So what I'm getting at is that comments from Dennis, Shawn Murphy or any other engineer like that need to be considered in the context of how those guys work, and the kinds of projects they tackle. If you are hiring someone like that, it usually features a rather big budget and you're not relying solely on your "Killer StringZ" sample library to play the main theme.

Naturally, individual tracks recorded at composers' studios often make their way into final productions. However, if you're talking about the orchestra, typically it's live and the live elements will be dominant.

--------------------
* Or many tens of thousands. Or, in the case of trumpets or woodwind players, multiple instruments in different keys, each one of which costs many thousands; others too.
 
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Ailitar

New Member
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I think there is a bit of muddle here -- not you @Ailitar but the overall question. If you have Shawn Murphy or Dennis Sands on the job, most likely it's a live orchestra, so my comments are in that context:

1. Already some "room" around the recording -- Most/all projects that would involve an engineer like Dennis Sands are also going to be comprised predominantly of live players recorded in a rather large space. Therefore, the "audio location" of the instruments is already decided, to a significant extent. You already have the piano / oboe / French Horns located somewhere in the hall / studio, so the engineer already has chosen where that sound sits. You can arrange the orchestra in non-traditional seating and you can record each section separately. Nevertheless, it doesn't happen accidentally or haphazardly -- the engineer seats the French Horns in one spot, the cellos in another - intentionally. Even if you're doing something non-traditional, you make a lot of choices about location with the initial recording setup.

2. Don't Fight Too Hard Against the Sound (unless it's intentional) -- Each studio player has an instrument that can cost many, many thousands. Each player has worked for many years, often decades, to master the technique and sound of his or her instrument. Engineers like Dennis S. have decades of experience choosing and placing microphones, working the board, and paying attention to the way sounds interact -- how they reflect off the back wall, how much space it takes for the brass to do that "bloom" they do, how much isolation / baffling they want. They already have decided so many things, and they generally know what you want from listening to your demos or hearing the first pass. It is common for the engineer to adjust mic positioning early in the session to refine it.

Plus it's probably at least 5.1

Shawn Murphy Doesn't Work at My House

So what I'm getting at is that comments from Dennis, Shawn Murphy or any other engineer like that need to be considered in the context of how those guys work, and the kinds of projects they tackle. If you are hiring someone like that it's usually a rather big budget and you're not relying solely on your "Killer StringZ" library to play the main theme.

Naturally, individual tracks recorded at composers' studios often make their way into final productions. However, if you're talking about the orchestra, typically it's live and the live elements will be dominant.
that`s entertaining
 

G_Erland

Member
I thought its an interesting idea, to pan the reverb sends, though i feel my intuition struggles with the sense of it. At least in the sampled orchestra context. As for the original post - im sure a panned insert reverb can make mixing sense, at least delays are quite often used like that i suppose.

Edit: oops, sorry - this is adressed in an above post, my bad.
 
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jcrosby

Senior Member
Yeah it's an interesting question, but I think the real answer is that people try their best to avoid panning things which are already wet, as much as possible. :)
But if you do need to you use true stereo panning. Some DAWs have this built in (Pro-Tools, Logic, Live for example). Since I'm mainly in Logic, Logic has a second tool many prefer called direction mixer. It also moves the whole image, but allows you to do it in degrees... You can also adjust width, mono below a frequency, etc...

If not you use a plugin like the excellent and free Stereotool plugin below. The idea is to move the whole instead of just turning one side of the mix up or down. By moving the entire image you keep some of the original integrity of the recorded image. The image does narrow, but you don't lose information from both channels which means the timbre stays more in tact....

Stereo tool is also useful as a stereo meter, allowing you to see how the image changes, correlation, etc. It also lets you do things like flip a stereo image, flip the phase on one or both, etc... It's a really solid and useful freebie...


The othe thing to realize is that at some point you need to create separation. Panning does this in a way no amount of EQ or dynamics can... It also creates depth... So when you find yourself needing to creating separation with panning even moving something just a few degrees can really separate competing elements, and give that instrument a clear place in the mix where it's easier to hear but still sounds natural... If your DAW has true stereo panning it's really important to set your sends as post-pan. (More info here if not familiar: http://www.carneymediagroup.com/mus...der-pre-fader-sends-on-faders-independent-pan)
 
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