• We would like to remind our members that this is a privately owned, run and supported forum. You are here at the invitation and discretion of the owners. As such, rules and standards of conduct will be applied that help keep this forum functioning as the owners desire. These include, but are not limited to, removing content and even access to the forum.

    Please give yourself a refresher on the forum rules you agreed to follow when you signed up.

Time based effects in serial or parallel?

David Tesch

Inspired
I tried parallel and I just don't feel it. Probably because I was so used to serial effects from my Lexicon gear before I turned to Fractal that it's just what I'm used to hearing. I keep the effect mixes somewhere around 30-35% on each, on Fractal sometimes a bit less. Like Bruce said it's nice to hear the delay slaps hit a bit of reverb.
 

HereToday

Inspired
Series, parallel, sometimes both in the same preset. Often in parallel with the amp path. Sometimes a delay in front of the amp. Depends on what I am trying to achieve.

The one thing I can consistently say is that very rarely will I let my effects go thru the cab. Even if they are in the amp path, I will often circumvent the cab. Can't stand sending them thru the cab.
 

Andrew Male

Experienced
Depends if the effect needs to be sent a clean signal or not. The only effect I run in parallel is shimmer reverb as I don't want a distorted signal going into the block. Series makes the preset less cluttered and the mix control is usually fine, I find for delay and reverb it's simpler to use as under 50% the dry level is unaffected.
 
Depends if the effect needs to be sent a clean signal or not. The only effect I run in parallel is shimmer reverb as I don't want a distorted signal going into the block. Series makes the preset less cluttered and the mix control is usually fine, I find for delay and reverb it's simpler to use as under 50% the dry level is unaffected.
I temember hearing that was the case for delay that the dry signal wasn’t affected until 50%. Is that the case with the reverb as well? What affect does it have on the sound if they go beyond 50%?
 

Andrew Male

Experienced

unix-guy

Legend!
The one thing I can consistently say is that very rarely will I let my effects go thru the cab. Even if they are in the amp path, I will often circumvent the cab. Can't stand sending them thru the cab.
Curious what your reasoning is?

In the real world you'd be before the amp, in the loop or after the speaker (cab).

Before or after the Cab doesn't matter for Linear Time Invariant effects like most time-based effects.

Obviously the digital world allows for different options, but wondering what your approach is and what benefit you are getting from it?
 

sprint

Fractal Fanatic
The one thing I can consistently say is that very rarely will I let my effects go thru the cab. Even if they are in the amp path, I will often circumvent the cab. Can't stand sending them thru the cab.
Also curious about the reasons for this one - never heard of anyone doing it before. I'll have to try it, but my expectation would have been low particularly on distorted tones given how nasty they sound to me cabless.
 

peteri

Experienced
I always used to run delay and reverb in parallel to the dry signal

I've gone back to delay in series to the dry path, it made no difference and made the mix level easier to follow - plus tidied up some routing sometimes.

Reverb generally stays parallel - because I run two reverb blocks, set the same but one taking the left signal only and one the right only - I feel like this gives me a 'better' room simulation - which is what I use Reverb for, rather than the L+R sum'd idea of one block.

Waiting for someone to tell me I'm smoking crack ;)
 

HereToday

Inspired
Curious what your reasoning is?

In the real world you'd be before the amp, in the loop or after the speaker (cab).

Before or after the Cab doesn't matter for Linear Time Invariant effects like most time-based effects.

Obviously the digital world allows for different options, but wondering what your approach is and what benefit you are getting from it?

Also curious about the reasons for this one - never heard of anyone doing it before. I'll have to try it, but my expectation would have been low particularly on distorted tones given how nasty they sound to me cabless.

First let me clear up any confusion. The bulk of my amped/distorted tones go through a cab. Just wanted to be clear about that. Some of it may bypass into a filter block to create AITR effect. I do confess to using this technique more and more lately as the difference is significant and cool.

Second, let me say that I am a sound engineer, so I approach my presets as if they are an extension of my DAW/mixing board. My approach (most of the time) is to very much "build" a sound, and I deploy a ton of EQ, filter and mixer blocks to get there.

I am very careful with IRs because they are essentially a continious EQ, and as such, they are reductive in nature. Once it is gone...it's gone...you can't add it back. That usually what I am looking for on a distorted/amped signal, of course. Not usually so on effects. I usually want more of a frequency range on my effects (modulation and reverb) than what I can get post IR. If I start with a clean signal, modulate and then pass them through a PEQ instead, I have a lot more control. This, of course, requires more work in terms of setting up parallel paths and then bringing everything back together so that it sounds mixed and blended as opposed to disconnected tones. It also requires a certain amount of care not to walk on other instruments or vocals in a band setting.

So, for example, even on a heavily distorted tone, I may layer a clean signal chorus or trem on top, and the only thing the listener will be wise to is that they can now also hear the effects instead of them them getting lost/creating mud. Sorry, if that may last comment may be offensive to folks, but to my ears, modulation through a driven amp, or of a distorted signal in general, is often asking for trouble. In my opinion, it is often overused by guitar players and the fastest way to have a sound person dial you back in the mix. To be honest, it usually sounds like shit through a PA. Mix it back in with a clean, effected signal and suddenly you have both discernable modulation and distortion and hopefully a bit more PA friendly. That is one example, but hopefully helps explain my motivation.

These aren't hard rules, by any means. Delay roams my grid with abandon. The phaser block can lurk at the front of a driven amp, if that is the tone I am looking for. I guess my real point, is that I would encourage anyone with a fractal to experiment with parallel paths and to not be afraid of using the mixer block to bring in clean effects, amped signals, un-amped signals, dirt, or whatever it is that you are working with, into one big happy tone tent.
 
Last edited:

HereToday

Inspired
One thing I should have added is that parallel paths are prone to timing and phase issues. I spend a lot of time sorting out timing issues, especially when bringing outboard Fx in parallel. It’s not for the faint of heart at times.

I’m hoping FAS brings us a dual channel FFT someday, but until then I sort things out by ear or sometimes bring channels into the DAW if things get challenging. A block or two in parallel is rarely a problem. It’s when you start running “channels” when things can get sporty.

To me it’s worth the trouble for the unique cleans and effects detail I can sometimes come up with.
 
Last edited:
Top Bottom