Introduction to MIDI and Computer Music: Reason: Using Send Effects
You can set up effects in two ways: as insert effects or as send effects.
We already used one method to create insert effects in Exercise A. The idea is that multiple effects are wired in series, creating a chain where the output of one effect feeds into the input of another. Insert effects are easy to set up and are particularly good for EQs, Compressors, guitar amps, and the like — any effect that you want to treat the entire signal coming from an instrument.
But send effects have their place, too. In a send effect, you send a copy of the signal from an instrument to an effect, in parallel with the dry, or “un-effected,” signal. There might be several effects sends, all in parallel. One advantage is that multiple instruments can share a single effect. This is a good arrangement for effects that you want to blend with the dry signal, such as reverbs and delays. It saves processor power, and it makes it easier to configure an effect: you have one set of reverb parameters, rather than a different set for every instrument.
You set up a send effect using the Main Mixer. Here’s how to create a reverb that is shared by multiple tracks.
If you don’t see this part of the mixer, make sure that the Main Mixer FX section button is turned on, and that the blue navigator rectangle is scrolled to enclose the FX section, as in the picture below.
Adjust the amount of signal sent from the channel to the effect with the green LEVEL knob just to the right.
There is more to learn about send effects, but this should get you started.