Digital Audio Principles
Illustration by Bruce Heavin

Digital Audio Principles

with Dave Schroeder

Video: Echo and delay

In this section, we'll take a look at echo and delay. Now, you might be thinking, well, isn't echo and delay really reverb just longer and more of it? It's actually not. There is kind of a distinction that we use in that echo and delay involve a distinctive repeat of the original sound, whereas reverb is kind of the reflections of that original sound decaying slowly over time. So if you out to the Grand Canyon and you yell your name out there, 'Hello Dave!' you get 'Hello Dave!' that comes back. As opposed to if you go down to a cement parking garage and yell hello Dave, you won't hear that come right back at you as a distinct repeat.
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  1. 50s
    1. Welcome
      50s
  2. 39m 8s
    1. What is sound?
      4m 15s
    2. Hertz and frequency response
      5m 34s
    3. Phase
      2m 38s
    4. Capturing audio
      3m 39s
    5. Sample rate
      6m 16s
    6. Bit depth
      9m 47s
    7. The waveform
      5m 3s
    8. Audio file formats
      1m 56s
  3. 7m 24s
    1. What is a digital audio workstation?
      2m 59s
    2. Typical DAW signal flow
      4m 25s
  4. 50m 31s
    1. What microphones do
      1m 57s
    2. Element types
      4m 59s
    3. Pickup patterns
      6m 51s
    4. Axis
      2m 52s
    5. Frequency response and the proximity effect
      5m 10s
    6. Phase issues
      1m 41s
    7. Microphone types
      8m 44s
    8. Miking vocals
      5m 39s
    9. Miking amplifiers
      2m 16s
    10. Miking drums
      10m 22s
  5. 16m 37s
    1. Cables and connectors overview
      2m 42s
    2. Balanced and unbalanced cables
      3m 18s
    3. Common cable types
      7m 13s
    4. Cable tips
      3m 24s
  6. 12m 16s
    1. What is an I/O device?
      1m 41s
    2. Analog to digital conversion
      3m 10s
    3. Tour of an audio interface
      4m 49s
    4. Interface considerations
      2m 36s
  7. 21m 3s
    1. What is a preamp?
      3m 21s
    2. Input levels
      5m 29s
    3. Padding
      2m 17s
    4. Phantom power
      2m 37s
    5. Phase reverse
      3m 4s
    6. Preamp demo
      4m 15s
  8. 12m 56s
    1. What is a mixer?
      5m 55s
    2. Input section
      1m 17s
    3. Channel strips
      3m 16s
    4. Master section
      2m 28s
  9. 18m 20s
    1. What is monitoring?
      2m 11s
    2. Speakers
      4m 47s
    3. Room considerations
      5m 42s
    4. Headphone types
      3m 50s
    5. Monitoring levels
      1m 50s
  10. 15m 23s
    1. What role do computers play?
      1m 36s
    2. Performance issues
      4m 11s
    3. Hard drives
      4m 38s
    4. Mechanical noise
      2m 10s
    5. Authorization
      2m 48s
  11. 6m 53s
    1. Planning for recording
      54s
    2. Doing a system check
      1m 26s
    3. Planning your inputs
      1m 42s
    4. The recording environment
      2m 51s
  12. 25m 51s
    1. Types of digital audio software
      37s
    2. Multi-track recorders/sequencers
      4m 56s
    3. Two-track recorders/waveform editors
      4m 55s
    4. Loop-based music production software
      5m 44s
    5. Plug-ins
      6m 56s
    6. Other varieties
      2m 43s
  13. 18m 58s
    1. Common components
      46s
    2. The transport
      2m 3s
    3. The toolbar
      3m 19s
    4. The Edit/Arrange window
      4m 42s
    5. The mixer
      5m 8s
    6. The file list
      3m 0s
  14. 19m 16s
    1. Setting up a session
      3m 30s
    2. Assigning inputs and getting signals
      3m 19s
    3. Input modes
      3m 27s
    4. Overdubbing and punching
      5m 14s
    5. Bouncing down
      3m 46s
  15. 19m 40s
    1. What is editing?
      1m 20s
    2. Waveforms
      2m 53s
    3. Making silent cuts and trims
      7m 1s
    4. Fades and automation
      8m 26s
  16. 1h 22m
    1. What are plug-ins?
      3m 0s
    2. Using plug-ins
      6m 11s
    3. EQs
      7m 4s
    4. Dynamics pt. 1: Compressors, limiters, expanders, and gates
      5m 40s
    5. Dynamics pt 2: Applying dynamic effects
      7m 2s
    6. Pitch shifting
      6m 13s
    7. Reverb
      9m 28s
    8. Echo and delay
      6m 23s
    9. Modulation effects: Phaser, flanger, and chorus
      9m 39s
    10. Sound tools pt. 1: About, gain, normalize
      7m 39s
    11. Sound tools pt. 2: Reverse and time compression/expansion
      6m 28s
    12. Sound tools pt. 3: Noise reducers, dither
      8m 11s
  17. 23m 42s
    1. What is MIDI?
      3m 6s
    2. Keyboard controllers
      1m 22s
    3. Computer-based virtual instruments
      1m 6s
    4. Control surfaces
      1m 6s
    5. Recording and editing MIDI
      12m 4s
    6. Virtual instruments
      4m 58s
  18. 27m 29s
    1. What is mixing?
      1m 54s
    2. Some common objectives
      3m 4s
    3. Some useful techniques
      5m 59s
    4. A quick mixing demo
      16m 32s
  19. 18m 48s
    1. What is mastering?
      2m 24s
    2. Sonic maximization
      9m 43s
    3. Final preparations and exporting
      6m 41s
  20. 13m 12s
    1. What is audio compression?
      2m 16s
    2. Popular formats
      2m 9s
    3. Bit rate, sample rate, and channels
      5m 20s
    4. Other adjustments and considerations
      3m 27s
  21. 15m 5s
    1. Essential gear
      7m 36s
    2. Voice recording setups
      1m 42s
    3. The voice production process
      5m 47s
  22. 10m 4s
    1. Analog vs. digital
      2m 48s
    2. Tube vs. solid state
      5m 6s
    3. The continual upgrade
      2m 10s
  23. 18s
    1. Goodbye
      18s

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Watch the Online Video Course Digital Audio Principles
7h 57m Appropriate for all Mar 02, 2007

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Whether one is producing music, podcasts, game sounds, or film sound effects, Digital Audio Principles provides the tips and techniques that will make the project a success. Author Dave Schroeder explains the basics of digital audio production techniques and covers the essential hardware and software. He also discusses sound theory, frequency response, the range of human hearing, and dynamic range.

Subject:
Audio + Music
Author:
Dave Schroeder

Echo and delay

In this section, we'll take a look at echo and delay. Now, you might be thinking, well, isn't echo and delay really reverb just longer and more of it? It's actually not. There is kind of a distinction that we use in that echo and delay involve a distinctive repeat of the original sound, whereas reverb is kind of the reflections of that original sound decaying slowly over time. So if you out to the Grand Canyon and you yell your name out there, 'Hello Dave!' you get 'Hello Dave!' that comes back. As opposed to if you go down to a cement parking garage and yell hello Dave, you won't hear that come right back at you as a distinct repeat.

You'll just kind of hear all the reflections, and it will feel like that sound goes on longer, but it's not the same as it being repeated. So let's look at applying some delay to a few different things. We'll start with a drumbeat. We'll go in here and grab this version of drums, and we'll insert a delay plug-in. So we can set a few things in here, but I'm just going to play a little bit and let you hear what delay is.

(drums playing) I'll bypass it. (drums playing) So that's delay, distinct repeats of the sound. Generally in delay, you'll get the mix control again, and then you'll get the actual delay length.

In this case, we're here and working with milliseconds. This lets me to select how long the time between the initial sound and the next sound is. So, that's your main control to pay attention to in delay. The other important one to think about is feedback, and that's the number of regenerations of the sound. If I have my Feedback set very low like it 1 and I play it, we'll hear that there is kind of one distinct echo. I'm going to go ahead and zoom in on a little sound here, so we can have one distinct hit for demonstration purposes.

We'll just grab these last few beats. Then we'll go for a pretty long delay. Then we'll add more feedback. So let's go back down and no feedback. We'll turn the mix up so we can hear the delayed signal a little bit more, about 50-50. Let's make that really long. Now, I'm going to launch a longer delay, because we can go a lot farther than that; we can really put this in the canyon.

We'll keep the mix, but now we can say I've got a lot--we can go much farther up to them, probably even this. Again, let's try that. (drums playing) Cool, much longer. Then we can add the feedback to add lots of repeats. (drums playing) So that's cool.

So let's just queue up this track and just kind of play with it, and see what kind of different textures we can get. You can use it to add a little bit of depth. We can use it really subtly and we'll use a-- (drums playing) Delay is very cool on drums.

You can do a lot of cool stuff. You can see that just by adjusting the length of delay, we can get a lot of different effects. This can be applied to all kinds of different instruments. It's just good to kind of demonstrate it on drums, and also I think a lot of fun. Let's go ahead and apply it a little bit of voice just to get a sense of how you might use it on a vocal. Again, we'll use the podcast voice and insert a medium delay. On a voice you can use it to create what's known as the slapback echo, which has a very, very short delay time.

Sometimes it'll be referred to as a bit of a doubler, and it can have a cool effect, especially on vocals. It can really make them pop out of the mix. (Female Speaker: Welcome to the lynda.com video training podcast for Friday, January 19th, 2006.) (Female Speaker: Oops. 2000. January 19th, 2007. This is episode 47.) Another thing I have is I have a Low Pass Frequency option here where I can actually reduce the frequencies of the delayed sound so that the first sound, the wet mix, has the same frequency as the original sound file, but the delayed repeats don't have the same frequency response.

So I can cut off the high frequencies a little bit here, and that will actually makes the sound a little less metallic. (Female Speaker: Welcome to the lynda.com video training podcast for Friday, January 19th, 2006.) If you like old Beatles music and old John Lennon stuff, (Female Speaker: Oops. 2000. January 19th, 2007. This is episode 47. This--) they use a lot of this kind of doubling slapback effect on the vocal tracks, and if you go back and check those out listen to the effects that they use on the different vocals, they make the vocals really stand out from the mix.

So that's a few ways to use delay. Of course, you can bring it in and use it for a sound design and making special effects, for adding a little bit of depth or kind of warmth to different instruments, and just generally putting things in a different space. By using delay you can send sounds to the back of the mix or bring them to the front. Or you can just make them seem a little bit bigger than they really are and fill them out. So that's delay. Next, we'll talk about modulation tools and how you can use those to kind of add a little bit more character to some of the sounds you're working with.

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