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Chapter 19.  Mastering Audio's Ins and Outs  > Using a Send to Apply Reverb

Using a Send to Apply Reverb

The technique we learned in Chapter 18, that of inserting an effect directly on the audio track, is generally considered standard procedure for effects such as compression and equalization where you want to change the signal completely. However, when engineers use time-based effects such as reverb, it's common to mix the original ("dry") signal with the processed ("wet") signal. There are historical, practical, and aesthetic reasons behind this practice, and although in music no rule is absolute it's always a good idea to learn the standard way before breaking the rules.

The technique below, then, can be considered the standard routing for adding reverb effects to your tracks. It involves using a send from multiple tracks to split off a copy of their audio that is then all sent to a single bus. A reverb is inserted on the bus and set to 100% wet. This gives you complete, independent control over the balance of dry (the audio tracks) and wet (the bus), so you can make the simulated reverb chamber as big or as small as you want without having to edit a setting on every single audio track. If you're familiar with mixing consoles, you'll recognize this as a typical aux send/aux return scenario.


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