Thinking about delays again..... an idea

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Mr D
268 posts since 8 May, 2012 from E.U.

Post Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:07 pm

Hey folks,

Have been thinking some more about delays.

It strikes me as strange that there are no delays that are more like a sort of mini, quite different from anything else currently available.

Let me explain:

One could make a delay that does away altogether with the concept of feedback.

You replace it with delay "lanes" or "tracks".

What i mean is this:

Say you choose to delay with 8th notes. So then you have a "track" that has a multipoint envelope curve, which would look a bit like an automation curve. If the envelope line stays all the way up (so, at max or 100 or whatever), then the delays continue forever. So now we've done away with feedback......and it's more controllable.

You could also go up in volume from the original delay, but then you run into distortion.

So then you could route this first track to a distortion effect and / or compressor.

Alternatively, you could have the first track route into a second track that is actually a distortion track. This would also have an envelope curve. Not for volume but for distortion amount. So you could do strange, non typical things like have (via track 1) four delays at the same volume with distortion, then 4 more delays (with less distortion) quickly dying to silence. Or "gated" type delays. So, 4 delays with the first quiet, and getting progressively louder

And maybe a third track that has a reverb effect (mix amount), so as the delay moves into delay 5, 6, 7, 8 the reverb could increase. Then a phaser track etc. ect.

Do you see where i'm going with this?

My motivation is that i'm normally so frustrated by feedback in a delay, it's often like trying to bareback ride a tiger, especially when you're dealing with extreme amounts of feedback, resonance and distortion. You hit a sweet-spot in feedback, resonance and distortion, but then it quickly gets out of control and the only option you have is to quickly lower the feedback

Anyone think this is interesting? Or dumbass? Can anyone thing of delay effect that couldn't be achieve using this scenario? I've got a feeling it would be a bit like the difference between an algorithmic reverb and an impulse based one. So actually, two different, equally useful flavors.

Last edited by Mr D on Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:47 pm, edited 4 times in total.

1794 posts since 9 Jul, 2015 from UK

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:34 pm

As soon as we started work on MTurboDelay I put this forward to Vojtech. The idea of feedback would be gone and instead full control over the number of echoes and their relative volume.
Basically this is just a multitap delay. The envelope idea is ok but limited in shape. For example you can only really go down or up with a curve. It is better to have control over each echo individually them you can make any shape to the decaying echo's. This is a multitap delay. So say you have 15 taps at 1/8 it will take exactly 2 bars to decay to silence. You see each tap does not have feedback.
I have created many of these multitap delays for MTurboDelay.
Some with individual values for filter, pan, delay time and feedback for each individual tap! Cool stuff.
I will send you a basic template preset so you can see the idea.
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911 posts since 19 Dec, 2013 from Japan

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:09 pm

What you’re discribing is a multitap delay. You can make one in MXXX and put things in the feedback path, change volumes, etc. the problem with then is that they take a lot of CPU. If you have 10 delay taps going at the same time its like running 10 different delay plugins and then when yoy add in fx things can quickly get crazy.

Of course sometimes CPU usage doesn’t matter, but most companies don’t make them because of this reason(at least that’s my guess).

That said, there will be some of these in MTurbodelay.

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Ian Craig
13 posts since 4 Dec, 2016 from Belfast, UK

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:33 pm

PSP 608 delay is not too bad with all it's Filters, Drive, Phasers and Reverb settings.
What I really want is a delay where the feedback level can be triggered by volume/velocity either above or below a threshold (via an invert switch). HoRNeTDeelayPlus (latest version only) attempts to use this approach above the threshold (not below), but it's very rough and needs more features developed. I'm always interested in good delays (especially with good presets as I find it difficult to see, especially MTurboReverb due to the amount of stuff on the edit page, also I'm 51 not 21 so I don't have forever to spend on these things)
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193 posts since 21 Jan, 2015

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:56 pm

Blue Cat Late Replies might fit the bill. It can host external plugins too.

Mr D
268 posts since 8 May, 2012 from E.U.

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:22 am

Thanks all.

I understand what you're saying about a multitap doing the same thing, but it's not intuitive.

The way i describe it, you do away with this "idea" and it becomes extremely simple. You just have your sound repeating forever, and a volume envelope controls the decay.

Then that feeds into the next process, which also has an envelope. That could be distortion, a filter, a reverb, whatever. It's like the delay equivalent of an impulse reverb (which often have envelopes to control the decay).

Basically think about the interface like a mini DAW arrange page. Each "track" is just an effect or control with an envelope, with one "track" feeding into the next, top to bottom.
Volume doesn't need to be the top track, it could be the bottom / last track. Or you could have a volume track at the top and also another volume track at the bottom. That might be useful when one of the middle tracks is affecting the dynamics, like a distortion "track".
You see, endless possibilities but the interface stays simple and no need for routing modulation envelopes to destinations etc etc. Instantly doable and tweakable.

You could have the audio visually traveling along the track, kinda like how it already is in some Melda plugins.

Chandler mentioned the CPU, and i was worried about that. But it shouldn't be a deal breaker, if your not going for Valhalla "shimmer" type sounds. I'm thinking more about rhythmic delays without a very long decay. And with track freezing in your DAW it's workaroundable.

Blue Cat Late Replies looks very tweakable but man, talk about feature and GUI bloat. I'm planning to find some time to delve into Late Replies at some point, it'll be a project.

But i think there's room for a different kind of delay. Some of my inspiration comes from the Vengeance Sound plugins. They're the opposite of Melda, very few features but what features they do have are very well chosen and musical, meaning you come up with usable or great sounds within seconds.

1794 posts since 9 Jul, 2015 from UK

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Sun Mar 11, 2018 2:32 am

I will upload a multitap preset now to show you that it is intuitive.
What your asking for is almost impossible. You see the only way to make something repeat forever is to use feedback. If we are faking feedback then it uses a separate delay for each echo. You are asking for these echoes to go on forever until the envelope says otherwise. So this (without the envelope shape) will be an infinite number of delays = CPU mayhem!
Realistically you can only have a maximum amount of echoes, lets say 32? You should never really need more than that. Even 32 will be very high CPU.
If these echoes are represented as bars (like a step sequencer) you can easily control the level of each tap by just simply drawing over the bars. It is very intuitive and more flexible than an envelope. I will show a preset here shortly to show it to you.
An envelope would work nicely maybe for just simply decaying the level of each echo. However this is where it stops really being useful. Imagine instead controlling the panorama of each echo. A nice technique would be for the echoes to start centrally and as they decay for them to become progressively panned more to the left and right. How would you draw this with an envelope? much easier with bars.
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1794 posts since 9 Jul, 2015 from UK

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Sun Mar 11, 2018 2:43 am

OK, so paste this into MXXX:

Code: Select all

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Distorted Horizon
1346 posts since 17 Jan, 2017

Re: Thinking about delays again..... an idea

Post Sun Mar 11, 2018 3:18 am

An idea as the OP said, but as visual waveforms that you can adjust your MSEG's with eyes.. So the plugin would work like TAPE! It record the output and play it back and back and back and back and back and back and back and... Back. Unless you make it reverse after couple of beats. Then it'd play
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