Get multiple takes on the sense of space in one project

We're developing a track idea, and we've added some reverb already. The basis of the instrumental is drawn from Vienna Symphonic Library’s Dimension Strings, but we've coated the whole project with our own reverbs, which we'll dive deeper into now.

The strings sound very dry which makes them very ‘close’. As they’ve been recorded in a dry space, they need to be placed ‘further away’. We add FabFilter’s Pro-R to the string group with a short dark reverb. You can compare the dry and wet signals across the two halves of the loop.

It’s the distance parameter at the top which works well here. This sets the proximity between us and the source sound. In a concert hall, we’d tend to be a few meters away (at least) from a string ensemble, so setting these samples back feels right.

Now that the strings are ‘placed’, we can add space to them. To glue them to the other elements in the mix, we’re sending them to the Dark Plate from Valhalla VintageVerb, created for the Bass part; and the fizzy UVI Sparkverb, created for the Click and Rim parts.

We turn the string volume down, then apply this multi-reverb approach to the Click and Rim group. These have the Sparkverb fizz but lack reinforcement in the midrange. We add this via VintageVerb as well as using a new Pro-R treatment, in-channel, to set this part back in the mix a little, too.

We add some sidechain compression pumping to the strings and then drop their level before setting up a final reverb treatment; a Lexicon Hall. This is then added to the strings, the sequence part at the top of the mix and the ticking, filtered sequence.