Mark Bliss wrote:OK, I went back a re-read some of the thread to see where we might pick back up, and it occurred to me I missed a cue for an important tip on "effects" that may have answered part of one of your early questions Brewsir.
Similar to the loops being loud, the vast majority of effects plug ins do a dirty trick on you by being set by default to increasing gain when inserted.
This increase in loudness tricks the brain into thinking there's an improvement, when the "improvement" is often really just a matter of mostly being louder.
That's fine if that's what you want it to do, but often..... that's NOT what you want. And as you may be learning, it often causes a problem or two.......
As I suggested above, experiment! Try some presets. Learn what twisting all the little knobs does.
But in the end, learn to use them with purpose. Knowing why you are adding it, not just exploring and guessing until you get lucky. (Maybe. Probably not.)
My tip for today, when you "test drive" a plug in, turn down its output until the level sounds the same when you toggle the plug in on and off. (level matching)
If theres no noticeable difference in sound when the level is matched (it happens more than expected.) Now try different settings and rechecking the level, matching as needed. Pause and reconsider what its doing there.
What are you trying to do with it?
I discovered this actually, early on I was just blowing through content, trying to learn. I'd put down some loops, grab a plugin, immediately turn the gain slider down,
(and I figured out, there's more to it than just turning down the gain slider
) mess with it a bit, and move on, grab more loops, repeat. Anyway, at some point I decided it was time to slow down, and try to make something better, much better. That's when I dug into those damn plugins. I can't recall which plugin(S) it was, but, I just wanted to get to the bottom of it. It was after I got the Metal pack, don't laugh, I sent my grandson a song, and now he wants Mixcraft. I had a new weapon in my arsenal, dry guitar parts. Now, I thought, I'll show those old farts on the forums what I can do, right? I load up some loops, place my "extra special, I'm a badass, rockstar dry guitar loop, watch this, I'ma show you!", Then I load up my "extra special doomsday nuclear distortion amp", and hit play, and holy badassery, does that sound sweet!
So now I'm laying loops down and creating audial bliss (you don't have that trademarked do you?) I'm having a grand time, but, as a perfectionist (trust me, that's not a good thing) I just didn't like the fact that my awesome new guitar sound, wasn't all that great, by itself, it requires the matching "enhanced" guitar part. That's when I took a deeper look into the plugins. Once I got the extra gain out of the plugins, my awesome shredding axe sounded like, wait for it.......... a juiceharp
Ever since then, I've been on a quest to get at least an acceptable, modern rock sound out of the damn things. I know someone will ask if I've tried the presets, hell, I've damn near got em memorized (not really) I don't know, but, to me, most of them sound like they came from Corky the Clown. I mean, come on, when I ask for a metal guitar sound, don't turn on a Norelco razor.
Full disclosure, I haven't bought any plugins. I downloaded Span, and one other freebie. I've been experimenting big time. What I like to do, is to load several plugins, experiment with each by itself, and then check/uncheck every possible combination of boxes until I get a sound I like, then I remove any unused plugins, and begin to fine tune what remains. I know that probably sounds nutty, but, it's doing some good things. For instance, I had a general idea about the different effects like, chorus, flanger, EQ, but, some were new to me, compression and some other techno gizmos, so, I'm getting acquainted. It's been Funstrating. Created a new word, better get back to work while the juices are flowing