Whats the standard delay on vox used in a lot of today's music?

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Music Afficionado
Member Since: Aug 12, 2008

I always hear a slight delay used on vox in a lot of music today - I dont think it is an echo. I suppose its on pop music a lot, but I hear it elsewhere like R&B, rock, etc. and swear I used to hear it (along with a bunch of other sh*t) when I'd listen to Pink floyd through headphones.

I always find myself trying to figure out if they apply it to the whole track or just the end of each bar. Is this a standard delay, as in beat based? Or is there a common plug-in(s) that people are using to get this effect, i.e. how people are using auto-tune to get that certain effect, melodyne, etc.?

Thanks for any info.

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Since: Sep 14, 2010

Oct 27, 2010 06:08 pm

that skind of a loaded question. There is no standard. Many times its a combonation of delay and reverb and more often than not the wet level of each is automated to not clutter up the more active parts of the song.

The robot effect is created by auto tune when you set the key and scale settings to NOT reflect the actual key and scale of the song.

Since: Nov 11, 2007

Oct 27, 2010 07:04 pm

^^^ AKA- We have no idea. It's likely that a combination of effects are used, and I would be very surprised to find that any standard exists.

Check out the history on ADT (automatic double tracking). If you ignore all the neat historical notes about the technique, the answer you seek is 25-50 ms of tape delay. You don't necessarily need tape delay, but that's how it was done originally. Might find a neat emulator online. I use Massey TD5 with results that please me. I would also bet that an echo effect at 25-50 ms would sound really cool too.

Czar of Turd Polish
Since: Jun 20, 2006

Oct 27, 2010 07:28 pm

I use a standard when tracking to sweeten things but; I don't know what the numbers are. I try to get a small trail that just overlaps but dies off quickly. It is usually only audible when nothing else is playing and is very hard to pick up when the rest of the tracks are playing (while tracking).

Typo Szar
Since: Jul 04, 2002

Oct 28, 2010 02:45 am

Well the "safe" approach obviously is to use the tempo sync and then just make sure ur trail doesnt get messy. Once u sync up u can go the musical route of half note, quarter note etc. to either make the delay sound very lively or more paced.

Remember also that "delay" has alot of psychology behind it. Since sound travels at a relatively set interval, about 1 meter per millisecond or something (im probavly VERY wrong) u can plan ur miliseconds to mimic how big of a space u want ur vocalist to be in. So if the delay is occurs every 25ms or so, than ur in a 25 meter wide space.

The decay of the signal quality (tape delay vs. digital) also plays into this. If u have a very crisp clear delay it wont relaly sound like its trailing off into the distance, while a more analog decaying delay will sound like its getting further as it loses fidelity.

Try thinking of these two aspects when setting up ur delay and ull end up thinking more of wat space u the vocalist to be in as vs just raw numbers.

Hold 'Em Czar
Since: Dec 30, 2004

Oct 28, 2010 10:09 pm

very short delays (<100ms) are a nice way to bring a vocal out and give it more presence (also paradoxically sinking it back in the mix a bit)....the trick it to set the time first so it's musically close (timing) with the tempo, but then fade it into the background to where you can barely notice it.....the best effects are the ones you can't hear, so don't make it distracting, just use it to thicken up the track some.

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