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Thread: What are the MAIN effects for mixing rap/hip hop tracks?

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    What are the MAIN effects for mixing rap/hip hop tracks?

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    When I record my verses I do them one time, and then I put a noise gate, desser, compressor, some eq, and reverb. And on my hook/chorus I do the same but record it twice and instead of reverb I add a light echo. I've been doing this for a while now but it still don't sound right and I have no clue what else to do! If this isn't the right tools what is? I have tried using different types of settings on each of these but it still sounds bad, please help!

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    Your issue is that you haven't Learned to properly use your tools.

    There is no set standard for achieving the Hip Hop sound, as there is no standard for achieving the sounds of any other genre.

    Learn what each tool does, and you'll Learn to carve the recording into EXACTLY what you want it to sound like.

    This is the only true answer to your question.

    Learn the tools.


    ​Peace.
    "Master of the mouth, music, microphone mechanics; gifted wit prolific spit, my larynx do damage"

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    Why do you add a noise gate? Why do you add a compressor? Why do you add the eq? I get why you might add a de-esser and some reverb (maybe).

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    The trend now is dry vocals...probably due to a market of quality, affordable microphones & a constantly evolving caliber in the top-of-the-line selection...

    I would just keep in mind that all these effects sound great because of the technology that's producing them - reverb, delay, compression. So now, rap vocals have that jagged, machine feel. As an engineer/producer, you have to ensure that all these effects are in time with the rhythm, or the tempo.

    You can hear that philosophy everywhere - 40, kanye, lex luger, the weeknd.


    Less is more...

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    Reverb , Delay , EQ , Compression , Not to muchis needed just gotta know how to use them

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    Quote Originally Posted by Luke Tortoso View Post
    When I record my verses I do them one time, and then I put a noise gate, desser, compressor, some eq, and reverb. And on my hook/chorus I do the same but record it twice and instead of reverb I add a light echo. I've been doing this for a while now but it still don't sound right and I have no clue what else to do! If this isn't the right tools what is? I have tried using different types of settings on each of these but it still sounds bad, please help!
    i hate dealing with having to layer choruses. because to be human is to be flawed. so i user chorus plugins as an alternative. if i can get away with it. but as far as effects in hip hop goes i would say that gating the vocals is great because it makes them choppy and stutter, light uses of compression, EQing is a necessity in a lot of cases. but the sky's the limit. if it goes with the record then use it. distortion is another. oh and reverb is echo by the way.

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    There is no main effect when it comes to recording. The best thing you can do when recording is, do it right. Recording in the right environment (studio, vocal booth, bathroom) with the right microphone will save you a lot of time and trouble, and effects sound better on a better laid down track. Making sure you record at the right levels and carefull monitoring of meters can help prevent distortion unless it is desired. Reverb, a high quality EQ, and a good limiter will make the recorded material sound more vibrant. And remember to blend sounds into the sonic landscape by using your panning controls and stereo enhancement. Waves make a good bundle if a name brand is what you are after. Other than that use your headphones, speakers, ears and your judgemnet as a guide.

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    Quote Originally Posted by acetheface954 View Post
    oh and reverb is echo by the way.
    Incorrect. Delay is what is used to create an echo. Reverb simulates space, tweaked to the dimensions you require.
    "Master of the mouth, music, microphone mechanics; gifted wit prolific spit, my larynx do damage"

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    There really isn't a "standard" effect for hip hop. In fact the truth is, all genre's of music pretty much use the same set of tools.

    The most commonly used effect for hip hop however is usually delay. But, as another poster mention, the trend is actually to go a little dry especially on hip hop vocals.

    But in all honesty, it sounds like you are over processing your vocals. I would look more into getting a better vocal sound upfront before I look into "what effects can I throw on my track".

    You'd be amazed at how much little processing is done on tracks when they already sound great.

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    Step 1: I would recommend that you get a good mic, and make sure that you are capturing AS MUCH of the vocal as possible (meaning you are recording it at a level just before it is peaking, with little to no air bleeding into the vocal track). Step 2: when using EQ, raise the high/mid's and I like to taper off both ends (high-low). Don't get it hissy tho, and make sure you are not muffled either. Step 3: When layering or stacking vocals, I never stack just 2. So go 3 (Panned hard left, hard right, and middle) and make sure they don't flange. Good luck

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