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Using channel strips for audio processing

From: Logic Pro 9 Essential Training

Video: Using channel strips for audio processing

If you are new at using complex tools like EQ, Compression, Delays, and Reverbs, Logic's many options can be a bit overwhelming. You might say to yourself, "How do I know what EQ and Compression combo is right for my lead vocal?" Or you may even have a sound in your head that you don't know exactly which combinations of mixing tools will get it for you. Well it turns out, Channel Strip Settings aren't just for instruments. They work for mixing too. Let's start with the lead vocal. Right now, the track has no plug-ins in it. Let's look at the Channel Strip Settings available for this track.

Using channel strips for audio processing

If you are new at using complex tools like EQ, Compression, Delays, and Reverbs, Logic's many options can be a bit overwhelming. You might say to yourself, "How do I know what EQ and Compression combo is right for my lead vocal?" Or you may even have a sound in your head that you don't know exactly which combinations of mixing tools will get it for you. Well it turns out, Channel Strip Settings aren't just for instruments. They work for mixing too. Let's start with the lead vocal. Right now, the track has no plug-ins in it. Let's look at the Channel Strip Settings available for this track.

Since this is an audio track, there are some different options than what we see in a software instrument track. Let's choose Voice > Male Voice > Male Slap-Back Lead Vocals. As you can see, it loaded the track up with plug-ins. Let's go through these, and see what they do. Double-click on the Channel EQ. I can see that the EQ in here is pretty subtle. One of the things it does is it cuts all audio from about 100 Hz down. Since most male vocals don't go down that low, this we will use to cut out any rumble. There is also a slight cut at 200 Hz.

This is probably to take care of any boxiness in the sound. Then we have a slight boost at 1200 Hz. This will emphasize the mid range of the voice. Remember, Logic doesn't know exactly how you're recording sounds. I wouldn't trust all of these settings completely, but they are a good starting place. The next plugin is the compressor. This compressor uses a relatively low ratio, 3.7:1, and has some pretty moderate Attack and Release times. Next, we have a St-Delay. This is an echo effect, and it's set to be a slap-back.

Slap-back is a common delay effect that you might know from the sound of Elvis or John Lennon. I am going to play the track with the track soloed, and as a turn up the output mix on the left and right side, we will really hear this effect emphasized. (Male voice singing.) The next plug-in we have is called Ensemble.

This is a chorus type effect. It's using subtle pitch and phase shifting here to subtly widen the vocal in the stereo field. It's kind of a classic trick that a lot of mix engineers do to make the vocal appear wider as we are listening. If we turn up the mix, we can hear it more dramatically. (Male voice singing.) Finally, we have s Space Designer plug-in, which is a reverb on a small hall setting.

If I turn up the Reverb while it's playing, we will hear this effect emphasized. (Male voice singing.) So, this might be the exact sound you are looking for this track or maybe not. I recommend taking some time to examine the contents of different Channel Strips one plug-in at a time, like we just did. It's a great lesson on how pros can get their tracks to sound a certain way, and you can learn a lot from it. Also, you can use Channel Strip Settings that aren't necessarily made for the instrument on your track.

For example, in this song, we have a Harp track. I am going to un-solo the vocal and go down to the Harp track. Here it is. There is no Harp Channel Strip Setting. What about something else? Let's open the Channel Strip Settings here and let's try some ones for Acoustic Guitar. How about Bright Acoustic? It turns out that the EQ in this setting and the compression sound really good with the harp. You will hear what I am talking about when I hit play. I'm going to go to the Arrange window to make sure I am playing the right spot. Here is the harp with that Channel Strip Setting for Acoustic Bright Guitar.

(Harp playing.) Don't forget if you hit upon a good combo or alteration that you made on your own, you can always save it for later use. For example, the plug-ins on the kick drum for this song I set myself, but they work really well, and there are seven other songs in this record that we are mixing that were recorded with the same Kick Drum and mic. You can save this Channel Strip Setting and use it in other mixes. Go up to Setting > Save Channel Strip As and save it out.

It will be available for other Logic mixes. If you want to reset any Channel Strip to remove all current settings from a track, just go to that track and click on the Channel Strip Settings and choose Reset Channel Strip. This will let you start again from a clean slate. Channel Strip Settings are a powerful part of Logic. They make your life easier by loading up tracks quickly with plug-ins, but also, you can use them to learn how the pros process tracks.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Logic Pro 9 Essential Training
Logic Pro 9 Essential Training

74 video lessons · 28018 viewers

Scott Hirsch
Author

 
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  1. 1m 55s
    1. Welcome
      50s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 5s
  2. 17m 39s
    1. Installing the software
      3m 19s
    2. Launching Logic for the first time, using the templates
      5m 15s
    3. Understanding audio interfaces
      3m 35s
    4. Understanding MIDI interfaces
      5m 30s
  3. 32m 15s
    1. Getting to know the Arrange window
      5m 15s
    2. Using the many windows of Logic
      4m 13s
    3. Creating your own screensets
      2m 23s
    4. Using the Transport window and controlling playback
      4m 54s
    5. Using the Toolbox
      2m 37s
    6. Naming tracks and regions
      3m 27s
    7. Learning useful and custom key commands
      5m 18s
    8. Saving and going mobile with your project
      4m 8s
  4. 41m 41s
    1. Setting up for recording
      5m 43s
    2. Understanding Metronome settings or the click track
      4m 7s
    3. Understanding tempo
      4m 37s
    4. Recording live instruments and vocals using multitrack recording
      3m 56s
    5. Playing with guitar madness: Amp design
      5m 13s
    6. Playing with guitar madness: Pedal board
      4m 5s
    7. Working with takes recording and comping
      4m 51s
    8. Punching in to replace bad audio
      4m 51s
    9. Using Varispeed to create an old tape machine sound
      4m 18s
  5. 1h 8m
    1. Understanding MIDI
      4m 41s
    2. Using the Logic synth instruments
      7m 4s
    3. Working with the emulator instruments
      5m 23s
    4. Using the EXS24 sampler
      3m 7s
    5. Building tracks with Ultrabeat
      5m 31s
    6. Using channel strips to select a virtual sound
      5m 29s
    7. Understanding the basics of MIDI recording
      4m 38s
    8. Learning how to use MIDI with Cycle Record
      4m 9s
    9. Using Logic's step input
      4m 3s
    10. Mastering quantization
      6m 18s
    11. Working in the Piano Scroll window
      5m 33s
    12. Editing controller messages with Hyper View
      4m 8s
    13. Working with the Hyper Editor
      5m 29s
    14. Working with the Events List
      3m 20s
  6. 29m 49s
    1. Importing prerecorded audio into Logic
      4m 5s
    2. Exploring Apple Loops
      4m 40s
    3. Creating your own Apple Loop
      4m 21s
    4. Conforming tempo, region to session, or session to region
      3m 51s
    5. Using the new Flex Time feature
      5m 17s
    6. Beat mapping your project
      4m 41s
    7. Importing elements from project to project
      2m 54s
  7. 24m 15s
    1. Understanding the basic editing techniques in the Arrange window
      7m 5s
    2. Tips for editing and arranging
      3m 21s
    3. Editing and merging regions in the Arrange window
      3m 45s
    4. Mastering fades for audio region arranging
      4m 58s
    5. Fixing and morphing sound with the Sample Editor
      5m 6s
  8. 11m 12s
    1. Working with notes and composing in the Score Editor
      4m 26s
    2. Editing notes, keys, and time signatures
      3m 35s
    3. Creating scores and lead sheets for musicians
      3m 11s
  9. 9m 8s
    1. Setting up for a sync video project
      4m 50s
    2. Scoring music to video
      4m 18s
  10. 56m 32s
    1. Mixing philosophies and five tools for mixing
      3m 37s
    2. Setting up for a mix
      5m 11s
    3. Directing audio traffic with fader levels
      5m 7s
    4. Exploring Logic's panning features
      4m 37s
    5. Exploring inserts: Using EQ as a mix tool
      6m 51s
    6. Exploring inserts: Using compression as a mix tool
      5m 38s
    7. Using advanced signal flow with aux and send tracks
      3m 12s
    8. Using advanced signal flow with time-based FX to create space in your mix
      3m 44s
    9. Using automation to create dynamic mixes
      6m 22s
    10. Giving your mix life with automation
      2m 45s
    11. Optimizing performance with freeze tracks
      4m 42s
    12. Using channel strips for audio processing
      4m 46s
  11. 16m 7s
    1. Understanding surround hardware requirements
      4m 5s
    2. Building surround mixing workflows
      6m 17s
    3. Using the surround panner
      5m 45s
  12. 15m 48s
    1. Bouncing down your song
      5m 31s
    2. Understanding why alt mixes are a good idea
      2m 22s
    3. Exploring Logic's export options
      3m 37s
    4. Mastering your own Logic project
      4m 18s
  13. 37s
    1. Goodbye
      37s

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