Bass distortion effect
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Old 09-08-2018, 07:42 PM   #1
E-Fence
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Bass distortion effect

Anyone know of a distortion/overdrive/saturation vst that has a threshold you can set so I could bus two channels together and only have it distort when the combined channels dbs reach a certain threshold?

The other day I was trying artificially create the effect serious bass causes on sound coming through speakers or in a live environment. The best I can describe it is when the sub frequencies modulate the othe frequencies, especially the mid/highs. I would also be willing to settle with recreating the similar effect of speaker distorting when 808 sub bass drums hit hard and distort the other frequencies but when the sub fades out the other frequencies sound undisturbed.


I have already tried using sidekick vst on duplicated channels, one ducking one keying with distortion but this did not have very good control over where it fades from distorted to clean.

I also tried with better results just automating a clean wet control on a distortion but it is not quite what I was hoping for.

Maybe also smashing through compressor would help simulate this?

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Old 10-08-2018, 04:55 PM   #2
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Re: Bass distortion effect

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Old 10-08-2018, 07:13 PM   #3
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Re: Bass distortion effect

this tends to be how distortion units work anyway, they are gain dependent, but most do have a gradual curve that starts almost straight away.
anything with a spline graph will allow you to set up your own shapes and threshold with ease. personally i love izotopes trash 2, but they all do pretty much the same thing.

another way of adjusting the threshold would be to adjust the input and output gain inversely proportionally, so you could send both inputs to a gain plugin (if needed), then through the distortion, then to another gain plugin (again, if needed), then lower the input gain and raise the output gain (by the same amount) to make the threshold higher, and vice versa to make the threshold lower. this is pretty much what a threshold control does on all effects that have one. usually it only adjusts the input gain on the sidechain (internal) signal though, but the result would be the same, with slightly more CPU use.

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