Become a member
Become a member

or
Continue with Google
Log in
Log in

or
Log in using a Google account
learning
Comment

Mixing with Room Reverb

A guide to mixing music - Part 63
Share this article

This week we'll finish our overview of the different reverb families addressing the biggest one among them: rooms.

View other articles in this series...

Get a room

As their name implies, room reverbs try to reproduce the sound of a recording made in a given room as naturally as possible. As a general rule, they are small-sized spaces whose reverb time is relatively short, from roughly 0.2 to 1 second. Given their nature, the separation between early reflections and diffused sound field is much more prominent with rooms, than with other types of reverb. Furthermore, they provide a very distinct coloration depending on the type of room simulated. On the other hand, they can be considered “fast” reverbs, which can have some advantages because they will not swamp the mix.

Valhalla room
Room reverbs, such as Valhalla Room from Valhalla DSP, tend to work well on sources like percussion and virtual instruments.

Due to their natural character, rooms are ideal when it comes to recreating a realistic three-dimensional space coherent for all elements of a mix. They are also commonly used to conceal the small defects present in close-miked acoustic takes, or to make DI recordings of synths, bass and acoustic-electric guitars, etc. more lively. Virtual instruments can obviously benefit from this type of reverb, too. At the same time, the"swiftness" of room reverbs makes them a particularly good match for percussive instruments, providing a nice and realistic sense of space, without interfering with the groove itself, regardless of how frenetic it is.

As I mentioned in the intro, the room family is pretty big, which can have its downs, too, considering that not all Rooms are the same. First of all, the algorithms are very complex and, hence, pretty hard to get right. As a consequence, the rooms of a plug-in can differ quite a bit from those of another one and a poor quality room can do more harm than good to your mix. So you need be careful in this respect and, in case you are not sure as to whether this or that plug-in is good enough, read user reviews and ask other people who know better ─ you will surely be able to find good advice right here in the Audiofanzine forums!

Another thing to consider is that, given their nature, the frequency response of rooms is far from being flat. In fact, the reverberation of any room has dips and bumps across the entire spectrum. So reproducing this behavior adds to the realism of the algorithms. However, a given reverb might not be the best match for a specific instrument. So make sure to choose the best room for the source in question. Unfortunately, there are no rules in this regard. A room that works wonders on a Strat coupled with a Marshall amp might sound completely awkward when applied to a Telecaster played through a Fender amp. But this is something you’ll have to learn and judge for yourself.

Finally, using too much of a room will make an instrument move to the back of the mix while making it sound tiny. Fortunately, you can solve this adjusting the pre-delay setting and/or EQing the reverb itself. But that’s something I’ll come to another day…

← Previous article in this series:
Mixing with Chamber and Ambience Reverb
Next article in this series:
It's Just a Matter of Feeling →

Would you like to comment this article?

Log in
Become a member
cookies
We are using cookies!

Yes, Audiofanzine is using cookies. Since the last thing that we want is disturbing your diet with too much fat or too much sugar, you'll be glad to learn that we made them ourselves with fresh, organic and fair ingredients, and with a perfect nutritional balance. What this means is that the data we store in them is used to enhance your use of our website as well as improve your user experience on our pages and show you personalised ads (learn more). To configure your cookie preferences, click here.

We did not wait for a law to make us respect our members and visitors' privacy. The cookies that we use are only meant to improve your experience on our website.

Our cookies
Cookies not subject to consent
These are cookies that guarantee the proper functioning of Audiofanzine and allow its optimization. The website cannot function properly without these cookies. Example: cookies that help you stay logged in from page to page or that help customizing your usage of the website (dark mode or filters).
Google Analytics
We are using Google Analytics in order to better understand the use that our visitors make of our website in an attempt to improve it.
Advertising
This information allows us to show you personalized advertisements thanks to which Audiofanzine is financed. By unchecking this box you will still have advertisements but they may be less interesting :) We are using Google Ad Manager to display part of our ads, or tools integrated to our own CMS for the rest. We are likely to display advertisements from our own platform, from Google Advertising Products or from Adform.

We did not wait for a law to make us respect our members and visitors' privacy. The cookies that we use are only meant to improve your experience on our website.

Our cookies
Cookies not subject to consent

These are cookies that guarantee the proper functioning of Audiofanzine. The website cannot function properly without these cookies. Examples: cookies that help you stay logged in from page to page or that help customizing your usage of the website (dark mode or filters).

Google Analytics

We are using Google Analytics in order to better understand the use that our visitors make of our website in an attempt to improve it. When this parameter is activated, no personal information is sent to Google and the IP addresses are anonymized.

Advertising

This information allows us to show you personalized advertisements thanks to which Audiofanzine is financed. By unchecking this box you will still have advertisements but they may be less interesting :) We are using Google Ad Manager to display part of our ads, or tools integrated to our own CMS for the rest. We are likely to display advertisements from our own platform, from Google Advertising Products or from Adform.


You can find more details on data protection in our privacy policy.
You can also find information about how Google uses personal data by following this link.