I have few question about reverbs and how you use them.
First of all, what's your favorite reverb (VST) you like to use as your workhorse?
How many reverbs do you use in a song and how do they differ from each other?
I mean do you have for example one reverb for hihats, other for snare and claps and one more with a bit different settings for synths or even for every synth it's own reverb? What's you workflow here?
I'd love to hear some tips and practices of the use of reverbs. Thanks!
reverb rarely gets used on kick and bass, although sometimes if it works it works.
reverb is usually used on an aux channel as sharing reverbs helps to conserve cpu cycles but it also helps to place the track into one space. this replicates how reverb would work in a live setting as musicians are playing in one room. gives cohesiveness. don't forget to set your reverb on the aux channel to 100% wet.
On drums i will often use a drum plate reverb. The effect of this is something like a gated drum sound but with a little extra openess. If you have Logic DAW check out the "big drums" setting which has a perfect impluse for drums in my opnion. Sometimes you can use these on whole loops. I would try not to use cathedral or large spaces reverbs on the drums too much (although in small amounts it does work) except for one off massive reverbs on one off drum sounds, as is said above. I find that spring reverbs are better for giving lots of reverb to drums without taking up too much headroom in the mix. Very useful effect for downtempo music.
to give an example... one of my snare sounds may send off to a couple of reverb aux channels. it have a little bit of "big drum" reverb just to give it some body and a little bit of spring reverb to give it space. same process with a percussion loop.
I often apply larger reverbs such as hall, church, cathedral onto pads and atmospheres. actually this is where valhalla comes in very nicely as it doesn;t thicken the mix too much.
so i often have about 3 reverbs going per track plus a couple of delays.
for rythmic synth parts i would go for delays first to add space to the sound as they take up less space in the mix. Hall plates, spring reverbs or very small amounts of larger reverbs can be used in varying amounts.
if it's a busy track sometimes you might want to put an eq after the reverb and filter out some lower frequencies, but just be careful that you don;t loose the body of the track in more ambient moments. you can always automate the eq so that you can experience the full frequency range during intros/breakdowns etc..
i think the important thing with reverb though is not to overdo it. too much reverb and your track will sound lifeless and dull...and small with no headroom as reverb just eats up your mix. if you feel that you've overdone the reverb on the track you can always just try turning the volume of the aux channel down.
but try delays aswell to add body to the mix.
lastly, for massive space pad reverbs and deep ambience, set the track channel fx bus send to "pre send", take the volume of the channel right down and then when you adjust the fx send you would get a super wet ambient sound. the only issue with this approach is that it can create massive reverb eq spikes so, either give the track volume a little increase to add a little body and / or insert an eq after the reverb and use a spectrum analyser to see where the sound is bunching up and cut it, often very strongly, there.