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How do i Chorus Effect?

i listen to professionally recorded music and i notice that at the chorus the music gets louder, and more clear...or it just has some weird effect. How do they do that? i use Acid Pro 6.0 i have a MXL 990 Mic a M-Audio preamp/direct box. Can someone help me, i can also send u copies of my songs so u can hear my "attempt" at creating a chorus sound.

also, i dont like the softwear plugins that create the chorus sound, cuz it kills my quality and makes it sound like I'm recording in my bath tub. I know theres something i can do by overlaying the vocals. can one show me how to do it?


mugtastic Sat, 11/04/2006 - 15:01
my guess is that you have noticed a production technique on the chorus of some songs and seen an effect in a plugin list called chorus and related the two. "chorus" is just a time based effect - a more subtle version of phaser and flanger - most often used on guitars to create a fuller sometimes wobbly stereo effect.

as to how to make the chorus section of a song pop? million dollar question.

sheet Sat, 11/04/2006 - 18:18
Anyone that pays money for a chorus plug-in deserves to be smacked.

Think 12 string acoustic. What gives that a chorus? Two sources (stings in that case).

Record two tracks of your guitar. Play them exactly the same. You won't be able to EXACTLY, but try. Pan one to the left, and the other to the right. What do you hear? You hear tiny differences in time, and thus some phasing. Nudge your right track back in time a few ms at a time. What do you hear now?

Pro Audio Guest Sat, 11/04/2006 - 20:29
>>What do you hear now?
More phasing.

Chorus is a result of PITCH shift, not TIME

THat is why it requires a Delay with an LFO. If you simply shift in time two copies of the SAME exact sound you will most definitely NOT get a Chorus effect. You get Phasing and/or DOUBLING.

The two strings in your example (say the B or E) sound chorused because of tiny variation in pitch NOT time.

Just to be exact :)

Pro Audio Guest Sat, 11/04/2006 - 23:29
Well, you and SHEET are talking about different things: you are talking about a CHORUS in a song (as in the part of the song called CHORUS), Sheet was talking about the EFFECT.

The short answer to your question is...there is no short answer! Really.

The question you ask is about PRODUCTION, the art of which (if ever there was/is/will be/one) can only be learned through years of serious work and personal dedication. Each Producer does it differently and each has a unique character.

There may be similarities but, those do NOT make a rule. Also, each song requires a different tratment thus, there can be no set rules apllicable to all situation.

My suggestion is: listen for what you like in a particular song's chorus section and analize each part separately (instruments & vocal arrangement). Then, try to duplicate it on your own.

Pro Audio Guest Sun, 11/05/2006 - 08:41

I think I know what he means, that "effect" that you hear is just plain production, normally in pop or rock choruses, the productor tries to fill up the song with backing vocals or string/pad backing, or maybe fuller drum beats, it's all about differentiating the chorus from the rest of the song, using more elements to make the chorus fuller. The chorus effect can be used in any part of the song, it's not used to make something clearer or chorus like, it's used to give a somewhat stereo effect in vocals, guitars, any instrument, it also gives a bit more color

sheet Sun, 11/05/2006 - 09:55
Notice I didn't say cut and paste to perfectly identical parts. By performing the two parts, there will likely be adequate shifts in pitch and time.

This from the Rane Audio Reference:

Chorusing is a slightly elaborated version of doubling. A signal is delayed approximately 15-35 milliseconds and mixed with the undelayed signal. The delay time is modulated by a low-frequency-oscillator to achieve a shimmering effect due to a combination of beat-frequencies and the slight pitch-bending that occurs as the delay time is changed.

As for "how to make a record", and "how to mix a chorus", listen to records and on the best system you can, and listen hard. Put your mixes up against those you hear. Maybe draw it out on paper. Works for me.

Pro Audio Guest Sun, 11/05/2006 - 11:17
>>the slight pitch-bending that occurs as the delay time is changed.
The above phrase, (as written) seems to imply that the PITCH bending occurs as a result of changing delay time. That is NOT the case.

This is for those who do not know and to encourage them to get even an old delay unit with modulation and experiment making their own Chorus/Phase/Flanger sounds.

moonbaby Mon, 11/06/2006 - 07:01
Can you say, "Doppler"? Every "chorus" stomp box, rack unit, etc., uses a time delay that is modulated by some sort of controller ( LFO, a VCO, an envelope generator, etc). They take a slight time delay (around 25 msec) and move it up and down. If you listen to just the delay, it is a "wobbly pitch", but when that signal is mixed with the "straight" signal, you get "chorusing". A shorter time delay using the same techniques yields "flanging", while "phasing" is done by modulating band-reject and/or band-pass filters. The whole deal is that modulating the time results in modulating the percieved pitch. This is the basis for the Leslie tone cabinet, and what Doppler discovered in the 1800's with train whistles and their percieved pitch changes as the train moved closer/further from the listener. Time and pitch ARE related. Peace.

Pro Audio Guest Mon, 11/06/2006 - 07:28
>>it is a "wobbly pitch"
Exactly my point: it's pitch shifted BY THE LFO!

But, my point is: a Chorus effect can also occur naturally, without ANY delay present: two singers together (hence the word CHOIR), two guitar players together, the famed Hammond C-3 'chorus'. That's ENTIRELY the result of two singals whose pitch differs slightly. The greater the amount of pitch shift the greater the effect. Detuning is a Chorus effect.

When programming a chorus effect using a Dealy unit an LFO MUST BE PRESENT or there will be NOT chorus, PERIOD. That's because without the PITCH shifting you would only have a doubling effect.

Increasing the time dealy when programming a Chorus (say from 10-30ms) will ONLY change the perceived THICKNESS of the effect. because the PITCH shifted signal will be delayed. But, if you were to turn the LFO off you'd end up with DOUBLING.

moonbaby Mon, 11/06/2006 - 08:37
DIGIT wrote: >>the slight pitch-bending that occurs as the delay time is changed.
The above phrase, (as written) seems to imply that the PITCH bending occurs as a result of changing delay time. That is NOT the case.

This is for those who do not know and to encourage them to get even an old delay unit with modulation and experiment making their own Chorus/Phase/Flanger sounds.

And you are implying that the pitch is being modulated by the LFO, and that time delay and pitch have no relativity. These devices are time delays that are being modulated by the LFO, and the end result is the pitch modulation. These are not some sort of dedicated pitch-changing device that is being modulated (though they can be). Once again, I point out the Doppler effect. Example: A fire truck approaches you, the listener,
with the siren blasting. As the truck gets nearer to you, and then passes you, and finally disappears into the distance, its' pitch rises and then falls in relationship to the time it takes for the sound to reach you. The actual pitch of the siren ( or a train whistle, or a car horn, or a sung note) is not changed. It is the timeframe of the waveform that has, and that is what I am referring to. Time and percieved pitch ARE related. If the time is not modulated, you can very well get doubling. You can also get some whanked phase reinforcing and cancellations that will create some great (and some not-so-great) timbres by simply turning off the LFO to a short delay....

Pro Audio Guest Mon, 11/06/2006 - 15:29
In the audio waves world, a Doppler effect is the Compression/Expansion of waveforms caused by a soundsource which is MOVING at a certain speed with respect to the listener. It is the varying wavelenghts which cause the listener to perceive a bend in pitch (though none really occurs at the SOURCE), NOT the delay.

Because the wavelenghts behind the source are longer than those which are in front of the source, we get the apparent picth shift as the source passes by, HIGH to LOW. But, the pitch of the SOURCE sound does NOT really change. Only the perception of it. The faster the source moves the more compression will occur. A race car is a good example of that.

At some point, when the source speed equals the speed of sound we'd hear NOTHING until the source actually reaches us. Likewise, if a source is moving at 0.0003 MPH there will be virtually no pitch shift perceived. When the source surpasses the speed of sound we'd hear the sonic boom we all know and love :)

When the source is stationary the waves travel equally in a 360 degree. So, a distant sound source will sound at a constant pitch to a listener , no matter how long it takes the sound to reach the listener (delay). The delay has NOTHING to do with the perceived pitch bend, it is the COMPRESSION (shorter waves) of the waves in front of the moving source, and the EXPANSION behind (longer waves) that cause the pitch shift perception.

You will hear the pitch HIGHER before the moving source reaches you. After it passes you, the pitch will be perceived as LOWER. Again, the SHORTER waves will be in front, the LONGER waves in the back of the moving source.

Such shift is caused by the SPEED of the moving source, NOT by how long it takes the sound to reach the listener.