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Since there is such a wide variety of keyboard, they each demand their own approach to adding reverb. In this video we'll look at some of the techniques for adding reverb to a grand piano track. Since a piano is so percussive, reverbs that are timed to the track usually fit better than reverbs that are not. The exception is a solo piano or a classical situation where you are more concerned about putting the piano in an environment or enhancing any ambience that's already there. So the first thing we're going to do is listen to this piano and it is a solo piano which is a special case.
But that's okay because it'll give us chance to listen to what happens with the piano just on its own. Let's listen by itself. (Music playing) So I have a De-Verb, which is one of the native reverb plug-ins in Pro Tools, and I have it set to a small room and if you take notice there is the Decay of 500 milliseconds and this is a very, very small room. Have a listen to what happens when we add it.
(Music playing) Now what happens with a small room or a small reverb in general is that it's really good for making something bigger, but it doesn't necessarily put it in an environment. Especially a piano that soloed on its own, it really likes a lot more reverb and a much bigger space.
So even if we set it to a large area which is about a second, have a listen to what it sounds like. (Music playing) It's still not as big as what we'd like. So now let's move up to a plate. We're going to put this generously 2.3 seconds. Have a listen. (Music playing) Now this helps a lot, but let me show you another thing that really helps it out.
Here's a Pre-Delay. If we bring this out to 20 milliseconds let's say, have a listen to what it sounds like now. (Music playing) Not only is it bigger, but there's more of an environment there. But really a solo piano likes a much bigger space. Let's go to our Hall and have a listen. (Music playing) It sounds pretty good.
Let's add a little bit of Pre-Delay and have a listen. (Music playing) You can hear as we mute the reverb how much bigger it sounds with it and how much the Pre-Delay actually helps. We can actually double this. Let's bring this out to more the 50 milliseconds and have a listen what happens. (Music playing) Now the beauty of the Pre-Delay is it actually makes the reverb more prominent without getting in the way.
The reason for that is the fact that you hear the attack of the piano and then there's a slight delay and then you hear the reverb and you hear them separately. Without the Pre-Delay they're both on top of one another and they're sort of blend together, which isn't exactly what we want all the time. So that's a few concepts to think about when adding reverb to a piano. Reverbs that are timed to the track usually work better than reverbs that are not because the piano is so percussive. The exception is a solo piano or classical situation where you're more concerned about placing the piano in an ambient space.
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