Piano Recording Tutorial – Reverb
My home studio is a small room. When I record in this room with two microphones directly above the soundboard, I get a very bare piano sound without much reverberation from the room. This sounds very different from a live performance in a concert hall. Personally I do like this clean and intimate sound, but just for some fun acoustic effect, say, if I want to create an effec of a piano performance in a concert hall, I can edit the “reverb” in the DAW.
There are two basic reverb types in a reverb plugin. The “convolution reverb” is basically a “preset” with reverb effects from a real space such as a cathedral, a football field, or a concert hall. There are usually quite a few convolusion reverbs to choose from in a reverb plugin.
The “algorithmic reverb” is an “artificial reverb”, with every reverb parameter being adjustable by the music producer.
Let’s hear some music samples to get a better understanding of these reverbs. The first music sample is the original recording without any reverb (click link to listen) —
This is the “Concert Hall” preset (convolution reverb) in my DAW. And this is what it sounds like —
Even though this reverb was sampled from an actual concert hall, I prefer a more subtle acoustic effect, so I did some fine tuning and saved my setting as “custom concert hall”. This is the benefit of an algorithmic reverb — I can adjust the details any way I want. Now let’s have a listen —
Doesn’t sound too bad, does it? Which version of the performance do you prefer? It’s fun to experiment different reverb settings to find the best “color” for your piano recordings.