Layering Reverbs for a Big Lush Effect

I call this very cool technique Wrapping Reverbs

An Old School industry technique that has been around for ages involves using two reverbs in series to create a dense yet lush effect. The approach is quite simple: the first reverb is used to denote proximity or the closeness of sound which we often refer to as intimacy. You often hear this effect when listening to podcasts whereby the person sounds as if they are close to you but in a space as opposed to a dry sound that sounds as if it is in a dead room. We use this intimate type of reverb to add clarity and focus to the vocals. The second reverb’s job is to colour the first reverb. Quite often a pre delay is used on the second reverb to distance it from the first otherwise you would end up with two reverbs starting at the same time and that usually equates to mush. So far so good. A simple process that uses two reverbs in series.

So why am I using three sets of reverbs in series if we only need two? I use the third reverb to wrap the first two reverbs into a cocoon of reverb that helps to give an overall shape to all the reverbs. The best way of explaining this is to show you.

I will show you how we set up and layer three reverbs for a bigger and more lush texture. Your mixes will take on a new texture thanks to this old school technique.

Topics covered in this video are:

  • Working Reverbs in Series
  • How to use your DAW’s Sends to dial in Reverb values
  • Echoes and Early Reflections and how to manage them
  • Space and Reflections within a given area
  • Density and Diffusion for space or thickness
  • Timing Early Reflections
  • Filtering Practices for layering reverbs
  • Feedback and Decay
  • Colour and Transparency
  • Relationship between E/R and Tail
  • Tips and Tricks