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Using an outbound reverb after Altiverb?
Last post Wed, Nov 26 2008 by Rob Elliott, 16 replies.
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Posted on Thu, Sep 11 2008 03:01
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Dear Experts! Smile

I've heard some people on the VSL forums and others talk about how they add reverb.   Most recently on Mike Verta's Star Trek Theme post (see here: http://community.vsl.co.at/forums/t/19166.aspx).

He says and I quote: "The Altiverbs provide the room, and then like a real recording, there
is an outboard reverb on the whole thing, which is handled by another
plug-in: a modeled Lexicon 300.  I dial that up or down globally
depending on the cue.  I watched Shawn Murphy do this many times, so I just tried that."

This statement got me wondering...does this strategy really make a sampled orchestra recording sound noticably more realistic than just using Altiverb alone?  Is this strategy a significant contributing factor to the wonderful realism of Mr. Verta's re-orchestrated Star Trek Theme?  I'm asking these questions because I'm thinking about getting a Lexicon MX300 (or Breverb) to apply this strategy with my own sampled orchestra recordings.  However, I'm not entirely convinced that just because something is done on a real orchestra recording by professional recording engineers that it automatically translates to the same effect of realism when applied to a sampled orchestras, but I am really curious what some of you think.

Finally...if the answers to these questions turns out to be an interesting discussion, which do you think would be better: a Lexicon MX series model, Breverb, or something else (within the $500 range)?  Of course, if I could afford a Lexicon PCM96 or Bricasti M7 I would jump on them, but I'm afraid they are out of my budget.

Thanks for your consideration and advice,


Posted on Fri, Sep 12 2008 10:07
by jammusique
Joined on Wed, Aug 04 2004, Paris, France, Posts 262
Hi Brian,

I've been think about the same thing as you. I posted a question about the Bricasti and VSL before knowing about the scene placement that Altiverb does, nor about the MIR project the VSL is doing.

I about to finish some mixes where I will do individual stems with altiverb and then use my Lexicon PCM91 for the tail.

We'll see but IMO, besides a PCM91, TC4000-TC6000, PCM96, or Bricasti (in that order), we're better of with Altiverb even for the tail. The cheaper Lexicons are great for "pop" type reverbs, but too metalic sounding for VSL, and they're not intended to sound "realistic". I haven't tried Breverb but I don't think so either. I also have the Sony-Sonnox reverb which is great for "pop" ambience, but doesn't seem to do much for VSL.

All best
WW complete. MirX Teldex, Cubase, PC
Posted on Sat, Sep 13 2008 15:23
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Hey Jammusique,

Thanks for the reply.  I look forward to hearing your experiments with your PCM91.  However, Mr. Verta does not use his Lexison 300 plug-in (outbound reverb) to replace the Altiverb tail, but uses the oubound reverb in addition to it.  If you look at the page 2 (see here: http://community.vsl.co.at/forums/t/19166.aspx?PageIndex=2) on the post you'll see in the Altiverb image that the tail is still engaged in Altiverb. He's treating Altiverb as the room it was recorded in, and that room would have it's own tail in addition to the outbound reverb.

Thanks again, Brian

Posted on Sun, Sep 14 2008 19:24
by hetoreyn
Joined on Sat, Nov 27 2004, Vancouver, British Columbia, Posts 1159
I'm actually doing something similar right now. I'm having to work only from my Macbook Pro so I had to cut down how many reverbs I could use. So right now I have 1 instance of Altiverb .. using the TODD AO set .. although this time there's no fancy routing .. it's just Altiverb at the end of the routing and I'm using the Speaker placement to determine how much dry signal comes though.


The sound is actually quite pleasing .. as if it's in the stage that the IR's come from. Only problem is that of course it now needs another reverb on top to give it a more 'produced' feel. But this is a pretty good problem to have. Cos otherwise the stereo width .. EQ .. and all else sounds pretty good. So I would say one can work this way .. using AV to give an overall 'real room' impression .. and then using your favourite artificial reverb to give more essence to the tail.

Mac Pro 2013 - 3.5 ghz, 32 Gig RAM (Master)
27 inch iMac i5 2.7 Ghz 16 Gig RAM (Slave)

Pro-Tools 12 (Native), Mbox Pro 3
Logic ProX
Notion SLE

VI Pro, VE Pro, MIR, Vienna Suite, Omnisphere, Slate Digital Plugs.
Posted on Thu, Sep 18 2008 04:08
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Hi Hetoreyn,

Interesting!  The Todd AO Stage is the exact IR setting I'm considering for this stategy.  However, it would be nice to have an A/B comparison. 

This is what I'm imagining:

A: Altiverb instances only with the reverb knob turned beyond 100% to give it nice amount of tail something like 125% or more (i.e. "enough to simulate the produced sound just using Altiverb").

B: Same amount of Altiverb instances as test A, but with the reverb knob set to 100% or a little less (also, as I mentioned before...keep the tail engaged in your Altiverb instances). Then run that output through a "good" hardware reverb (or suitable plug-in) to add the extra bit of tail (i.e. "the produced sound").

Now, which would sound BETTER? Would there be a clear winner, or is it just a toss-up?  If I could afford a Bricasti M7, I'm guessing that scenerio B is how I would use it with VSL.  


Posted on Sat, Sep 27 2008 00:46
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

 Hi All,

I just discovered that Altiverb sampled a Lexicon 480.  Though this is no substitute for a great hardware reverb, I think it's an acceptable solution for a plug-in outbound reverb that approximates the use of hardware without having to buy something new if you already own Altiverb.  Here are the settings I'm using for the outbound portion, as the room portion is Altiverb Todd AO.  I think it sounds better than extending the Reverb Time on Todd AO instances.  I should do an A/B comparison, but I want to first post my Todd AO template with a decent audio test to see if I'm approaching this the right way


Posted on Sun, Sep 28 2008 22:52
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657

 Interesting Brian.   I hadn't considered this 'sampled' 480 (just thinking it would never even get close to the real McCoy) - but admittedly I hadn't even tried it.

I use Wizoo's W2 on the an FX bus in Cubase to wash over everything after either Todd AO (or Fox - which I have been liking better on denser material).  I really like those results but will try this ASAP.

Anyone else tried this with Fox or Todd AO?


what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
Posted on Tue, Sep 30 2008 15:42
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657

 Hey Brian (others using scoring stages)

This Lexicon 480 is quite good.   Thanks for the tip.


(Brian - noticed that you had the 'EQ' activated in the instance of AV - did you roll off the lows on the 480 to prevent mud on the final mix?  Seems to have worked nicely here.)

what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
Posted on Tue, Sep 30 2008 16:40
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Hi Rob,

Yes, I did roll off the lows on the 480, it helps.  Thanks for the reply to this thread!  I didn't know Audio Ease had sampled the Fox scoring stage...thanks for that tip!  I think the 480 is pretty good for me because I don't really want to buy any new hardware or software at the moment.  I have heard good things about Wizoo's W2 though.


Posted on Tue, Nov 04 2008 05:58
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Hi All,

Well, I'm wondering if any one has used the TC Electronics VSS3 (Powercore) with VSL as an outbound reverb?  Any opinions, worth the money?

Thanks, Brian

Posted on Tue, Nov 04 2008 18:45
by hbuus
Joined on Thu, Oct 26 2006, Posts 74

Brian, before investing a bunch of money in Powercore, do yourself a favor and check out Peter Roos' Samplicity IRs:


I have them both and am very happy with them.

The T600 library apparently contains around 30 presets from VSS3.

Best regards,


Posted on Thu, Nov 06 2008 15:52
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Thanks Henrik!

But....has any one used the TC Electronics VSS3 (Powercore) with VSL as an outbound reverb?

Thanks, Brian

Posted on Sat, Nov 08 2008 13:07
by Simsy
Joined on Mon, May 21 2007, Posts 385

Yes, this is exactly what I do. I have altiverbs for the room, one for each depth. Then I run the TC Powercore with VSS3 for the additional reverb, I really do think it adds that little bit extra polished feel to it. Also added the TC Powercore finalizer or if you can afford it the MD3 on the master channel really helps in the mastering process.
Posted on Mon, Nov 10 2008 17:12
by Brian
Joined on Mon, Apr 23 2007, Posts 185

Thanks Simsy!

If you don't mind me asking, which powercore hardware do you own?

Glad to hear that you have good experiences with the VSS3.  To be honest what I really want is a Bricasti, but I can't afford it so I'm trying to decide if I go cheaper, would it be worth the expense...or just deal with Altiverb while saving my pennies and maybe in a few years get a Bricasti.

The MD3 is also big draw to the powercore for me, but I'd be curious to see how it compares to the Vienna Suite mastering plug-ins? I really like the Vienna Suite package, but if the MD3 sounds better, I'd rather spend $1500 on it then $500 on Vienna Suite.  Then again, if there isn't that much difference (since the MD3 powercore is ported from the system 6000, and is not the actual system 6000) I'd rather save a $1000 and go with the Vienna Suite.

Anyway, sorry to unload all the stuff that has been swimming around in my brain! Stick out tongue

Thanks. Brian

Posted on Wed, Nov 26 2008 17:46
by clarkcontrol
Joined on Mon, May 03 2004, The Pagan Underground, Posts 315

I remember 15 years ago chaining together two reverbs all the time (PCM 70, TC, etc.) to get a smoother, more 'expensive" sound.  This worked real well with the cheap to mid-priced units of the day, as the studio I was working at didn't have the 480L or something similar.

So needless to say I still do this with the software verbs as well.  Very effective, IMO.


Posted on Wed, Nov 26 2008 20:04
by Rob Elliott
Joined on Sun, Feb 02 2003, Salt Lake City, UT, Posts 1657

 Interesting idea Clark - worth trying - just wondering if the 'mud' builds up.   Have you tried the new Acousticas Lex 300 IR - very smooth - especially 2.6- and higher tails.


what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?
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