How to use the VST plug-in SideChain Gate/Expander

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by quesne, Oct 10, 2013.

  1. quesne

    quesne Active Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    Any help would be appreciated :)

    I am trying to figure out how the side-chain portion of the gate works. The "manual" is useless, but I guess you get what you pay for :-O

    The problem is that I'm not sure how to "route" a signal to the side-chain input.

    By setting specific tracks in my DAW to represent the primary signal vs the side-chain signal (which would seem to be the intuitive way to use it), I do seem to be able to affect the behavior of the gate somewhat. Problem is that it is always either "on", or always "off". I cannot get the gate to open or close based on the level of a side-chain reference signal.

    Otherwise, does anyone know of a good (free or inexpensive) VST side-chain limiter/gate?

  2. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

    Feb 21, 2013
    Quebec, Canada
    Home Page:
    Most plugins with side chain fonctions, will let you send a signal of a track to the plugin side chain input, that plugin should not be on the same track of the side chain source. If you put the plugin on a bus, make sure that bus don't receive any of the signal that is sent to that plugin.

    To work with side chain gate, you must have a signal that has enough dynamics to affect the gate. remove the compression from the side chain source and try again.

    Some DAW has different ways of dealing with side chain routing. please tell us which DAW you're using and don't refrain from checking the manual about this..
  3. Mo Facta

    Mo Facta Active Member

    May 22, 2011
    JHB, RSA
    Home Page:
    If you're in Cubase you do it from the channel sends. All you need to do is enable the sidechain input on the gate, go the channel you want to to key from and select it as a send in the channel edit window or from the inspector under "sends".

    Hope that helps.

    Cheers :)

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