Reverse Reverb Audio Engineering Technique – Part II: Digital (DAW)

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In my last Omega Studios’ blog post, we looked at creating a reverse reverb effect using tape-based multitrack techniques.  Creating the effect in the analog realm or the digital/DAW based realm is a useful component in advanced recording training.  Creating a reverse reverb effect with a DAW is achieved very much the same way as it is with analog tape. For the sake of this discussion, the DAW used is Pro Tools, but this effect could be recreated in other DAW’s using a similar approach.

 

Here’s how to acheive a reverse reverb effect:

1. Start with a decent rough mix of the song to get a feel for the right type of reverb to use.

2. Create an Aux Input, insert a reverb plug-in on the new aux track and select an available bus for it’s input. Note the reverb decay time as this will be important later on in the process.

reverse reverb effect

3. Use an available send on the audio track to which the effect will be applied and route signal to the bus used as input to the aux track.

4. Create a separate playlist on the track you are going to affect so the original track is unaffected.

5. Select “Duplicate…” from the track’s playlist menu

reverse reverb effect

 

6. Select the audio to be processed and extend the selection by the amount of reverb decay time.

reverse reverb effect DAW

7. If this audio exists as multiple clips you must first consolidate them into a single clip by using either the keyboard shortcut – Shift+Option(Alt)+3, or choosing Consolidate Clip from the edit menu.

reverse reverb effect DAW

8. Using the Audiosuite “Reverse” plug-in, render the selected audio.

render the audio

The audio will now play in reverse from the end of the track to the beginning.

reverse reverb effect DAW

 

9. Record the reverb return set up earlier by routing the output of the aux track through an available bus to the input of an audio track.

reverse reverb effect DAW

Be sure not to have any other audio passing through the reverb plug-in when doing this.

10. The recorded reverb must now be reversed. As you did with the audio track before, select the newly recorded reverb and reverse it using the Audiosuite “Reverse” plug-in. Once reversed, nudge the audio back (to the left) by the amount of reverb decay time used.

reverb decay time used

11. Go back to the original playlist of the audio track you are affecting.

audio track

The reverb will now play in reverse before the audio rather than forward after the audio as it normally would.

reverse reverb audio

 

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