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How to Automate in Reaper?

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CaliaMoko

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« on: September 04, 2018, 02:05:58 AM »
I'm learning to do some new stuff. Right now I'm trying to figure out automation. I have managed to add automation to a track, but the track is sending to a bus (something else I just learned and I really don't know if I'm saying it right) with a delay effect on it. So maybe I need to do it differently?

I want to reduce the volume on the echo in some spots. How can I do that?

I'm using Reaper. I have a track with my vocal on it. There is an active reverb plugin on the vocal track. The vocal track is also sending to a track bus? Bus track? The bus track or whatever has an active delay plugin, so the vocal sounds kind of like a call and response (if you need an aural to hear what I mean, it is here: https://soundcloud.com/caliamoko/always-in-a-hurry/s-By4Av). In four places the vocals overlap. I want to quiet the echo vocal where it overlaps.

How can I do that in Reaper?

Thanks!
Vicki

pompeyjazz

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« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2018, 07:28:00 AM »
Hi Vicki, without getting into too many details, firstly I would kill the routing to the bus until you have got your automation sorted out on the vocal track. If you are only sending the vocals to the bus then it's probably not worth bothering with. I tend to treat buses as "groups" so for example, I would send all of my guitar tracks to one bus, all my bv's to another, drums to another and then I can mix all of the bus tracks together for the final mix  :)

This youtube video might help



John

CaliaMoko

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« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2018, 03:19:18 PM »
Thanks, John. I can see automation is going to be really handy for some things in the future. I don't think it's going to work for my current problem, though. I need to reduce the volume on the echo portion of the vocal. I have no idea how to isolate the echo portion so I can apply any kind of dynamic change to it. Right now, I'm thinking maybe I will copy my vocal track reduce the volume on the second copy and move it over to the side to make it sound like an echo. Then I'll be able to apply Dynamics to any part of that 2nd track. So I'm back to the computer to check that out.

Boydie

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« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2018, 07:10:33 AM »
Hi VICKI

It depends how you have set your "Echo" up as an effect

If you have done it as an "Insert Effect" (where you put the effect directly on your track) the plugin itself should have a Wet/Dry control so you can adjust how much Echo is heard

If you have set it up as a "Send Effect" (where you have the effect set to 100% Wet on a separate track) then you can adjust your send level to control the amount of effect that is heard, and even turn the volume of the effect track down

Depending on the plugin you may be able to automate the controls of the insert effect
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CaliaMoko

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« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2018, 01:12:36 AM »
@Boydie : I had to think about that and read it over a few times. I tried it both ways. I was able to adjust dynamics to the full track for the echo, either way, but I couldn't figure out how to isolate sections of the track and turn it down only on those sections, leaving the volume up on the rest.

I could turn down dynamics in sections on both the main sound AND the echo, but not just the echo. It seemed to be an "all or nothing" situation. I know I have a LOT more to learn, but I'm going to take it slow.

Without this forum I would be much more handicapped. I appreciate everybody and all the help I get here so MUCH!

Viscount Cramer & His Orchestra

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« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2018, 06:09:05 AM »
To isolate the echo portion you just need to have that on its own track so you can automate the level of it there. So the vocal needs to be sent to another track (is that a bus?) where you can apply the effects there and have separate control over them.
Take it easy.

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Boydie

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« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2018, 07:14:07 AM »
@CaliaMoko

If you start thinking less about "turning the echoes down" and more about "sending less signal to the echoes effect" you may start getting on the right lines

For an "insert effect" there is likely to be a Wet/Dry control, often shown as a % - 100% is usually all wet, so you hear only the echoes and no dry signal (which sometimes catches people out as it can sound like your audio is not lined up correctly as you on,y hear the delayed audio)

In this case if you want to "turn the echo down" then you simply adjust the wet/dry balance to have more dry signal Anne less echo (i.e. a lower %, where zero only gives you a dry signal and no echo at all

It may be possible to automate this control so you can adjust it in different parts of the track


The send method does have a crucial difference, which may be catching you out...

Essentially you have the echo on a separate track, set to 100% wet

You then adjust the amount of dry signal going to the track with the echo on it using the send control

However, it is important to understand the "routing" of your channel strip in Reaper as although the order usually flows from top to bottom most DAWs allow you to put your SEND either side of your fader for that channel - either before (pre fader) or after (post fader)

This can often catch people out but if you stop and think it makes sense...

If you set your send pre-fader then the SEND control adjusts the amount of signal going to the echo - so if you dragged your fader all the way down you will STILL be sending signal from that track to the echo

If you set your send post-fader then the SEND control AND the fader will adjust the amount of dry signal going to the echo - so if when mixing you increase the volume of that track using the fader you will also increase the amount of signal going to the SEND, which is also then passed to the echoe

If you are using a SEND effect and not getting the behaviour you expect then I would investigate whether your sends are pre or post fader
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CaliaMoko

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« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2018, 03:25:46 PM »
@Viscount Cramer & His Orchestra : Thanks...I think I tried that but it's hard to remember everything I tried. I might just need a different VST?

@Boydie : Every time I read through what you wrote, a little more penetrates the fog. I'm finding the pre-fader/post-fader concept confusing, so I need to go play with it awhile.

Right now I'm at a dead stop, as the sound has quit working on my recording computer. I have no idea what the problem is, although I'm thinking it's possible my sound card died. Except the alert signals (like the dinging sound when I unplug a USB cable) are still working. So I don't know.... Anyway, I need to solve that issue before I can proceed with any more recording experiments.

Thanks again for all the help!!!

Vicki