Propellerhead Reason tutorials made by Hydlide

Published on Reason Experts

The Echo and creative effects

Published: one year ago

While you are thinking about The Echo you most likely think "delays" right? Normally I would use the Echo just as a delay buy with a touch of magic on the delay itself. Since in theory, the Echo is like the big brother of the DDL-1 Digital Delay. It can do the exact same thing, but it can also be thrown in a creative direction while doing so. In this article, I would like to address a few tips and tricks regarding the Echo which might not be that obvious. While they are right in your face you may not have used the echo in this way more or less. I will skip the break out section in this article since I have also discussed that in a different one. So let's jump right into some, shall we?

The following patches are made for Reason 6 and higher

Haas effect

You might have heard of the Haas effect before. It is a simple audio illusion to trick you that the signal comes from the right side or from the left side. At the same time, this illusion also creates space while doing so. Inside the Echo of Reason you instant access to this effect without having to do a lot of complex routing to make it all work. Since the delay comes with a Right offset amount. Which can be the source of re-creating a Haas effect with ease.

The ingredients you will need:

- Create an instrument
- Create an Echo Delay (can be an insert effect)
- Reset the Echo Device (so it is an initialized patch)
- Set the Time delay to 1ms
- Set the Offset R to 16 Milliseconds
- Feedback goes on 0.
- Dry/Wet Balance goes to wet

And you are all set to go

Instant Haas effect using a Delay

The following patch is the insert effect as shown above. So by default, it will not produce any sound. You will need an instrument and use a combinator as an insert effect, or use this patch in the insert fx chain.

Download Combinator Patch

Parallel me some delay

Based on the same approach as above. In this case, we'll be using the echo as a parallel delay bus that slight adds a single touch of delay in milliseconds. The delay times are meant to be short in this context (around 32ms till 48ms). Because it has a drive to go a little bit towards a flanger effect but it is a constant delay that gets triggered. The settings go as followed:

- Create an instrument
- Create an Echo as an insert effect
- Reset the Echo Device (so it is an initialized patch)
- Set the dry/wet balance knob around 30-ish% (depends on your flavor)
- Set the feedback to 0
- Set the delay time on 48ms and have the offset right really low (I will go for 8ms in this case)

Parallel Delay

Once you start pushing the Dry / Wet more towards Wet you will hear the effect taking place. While on setting it fully to Wet it might become a bit unpleasant to listen to. So this is one of the reasons why I would use this type of effect more towards dry, rather than being wet.

Download Combinator Patch

Diffusion magic

I love diffusion for multiple reasons. Especially in reverb, they tend to smear the sound in all kind of different ways. Inside the Echo, you have a setting for Spread which how far the smear will take place. The amount is the amount of smear (or diffusion) takes place. In cases of diffusion, I usually love more... I guess it is all a personal thing. I like spaghetti too.

Anyhow, the setup kind of goes as followed:

- Create an instrument
- Create an Echo as an insert effect (yep, again)
- Reset the Echo Device (there is that one again)
- Set the delay time very low (8ms)
- Set the offset R relative low (24ms)
- Feedback goes around 60%
- Dry/Wet balance around 45%
- Enable the Diffusion
- Spread goes pretty high (65% > )
- The amount goes pretty high (70% >)

Echo Diffussion

And this results into the following combinator patch:

Download Combinator Patch

Beat Repeater on steroid

You may have seen me create a beat repeater effect using just plain digital delay lines. The Echo kind of works the same way (to set it up) but it can do so much more. It is just a bit more time consuming to set things up (because it requires some programming) and some routing. Step by step it would be going like this:

- Create a Combinator
- Create a Line 6:2 mixer (it could also work with the Line 14:2 mixer)
- Create an instrument (I'll go use the Dr. Octo Rex for once)
- Add an additional Echo in between the Mixer and the OctoRex (press and hold shift while adding it)

The problem here with auto routing is that the Echo will normally route as a send effect inside the Mixer 6:2. We don't want that. Hence the "press and hold shift" remark.

- Press Tab
- Connect the Mixer 6:2 output to the Echo input
- Connect the Echo output to the combinator "from devices" inputs

This should now look as followed:

Echo Beat Repeater effect

So the audio will be traveling from The Dr. Octorex to the Mixer 6:2 to the Echo.

Now for some 'fancy' programming stuff. What we'll be doing this time is use a toggle button on the Combinator to enable / disable the beat repeater effect. There are different ways you can do this, but the following method is the easiest method I can find to explain the connection / set up.

First, select show programmer (ow no!). Then select the Mixer 6:2 and use the button to toggle the mute of channel 1 (which is the Dr. Octorex channel in this case)

Toggle Beat repeater

Next, select The Echo and use the toggle button to set the Feedback to 100% and the Dry / Wet Balance to wet (100%)

The echo beat repeater

And that is basically it. By now you can use the toggle button Button 1 to turn on and off the beat repeater effect.

Download the combinator patch

The major benefit of this technique vs the DDL-1 Digital delay is that you can also use the Keep Pitch setting while using an LFO to change the delay times (kind of like what synchronous does). So these were just a few ideas I could come up with regarding the Echo. Still, there are plenty more, but I will share those in a later article.

In the mean time I will also include the following Reason Vlog I recorded this morning.


Published on Reason Experts
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Published on Reason Experts
Published: one year ago

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