Every time I see a new plugin, I wonder if it’s really offering anything new. Most recently, I got an email about the Waves Reel ADT and started thinking there has to be another way to do the same thing.
I don’t have any problem with Waves. I own a few of their products and use them all the time. But in an effort to save money, I’m thinking I don’t need to buy everything they have to offer.
And what is ADT? Automatic Double Tracking is a technique pioneered by George Martin in his production of the Beatles. Using a tape machine with a short delay, he was able to simulate the effect of two vocalists from a single track.
Rest assured, you have the tools you need to make this happen without a new plugin.
ADT is similar to a slap back delay, but you only want a single repetition of your original signal to create that feeling of two singers.
Send some of your signal to a send with a tape delay on it. It could actually be any delay, but tape delays will get you closer to that original ADT sound. Do a little work with the delay so the feedback is at it’s lowest and there is no dry signal passing through it. Set your delay time somewhere between 50-80 milliseconds or really whatever sounds good to you.
Give that a shot. The send shouldn’t sound like a delay, but more like a second singer. So adjust the delay time to get that effect but avoid making the delay so short it creates combfiltering.
On its own, this might not be very convincing, but keep pushing forward. If you have any sort of tape saturation, flutter/wow parameters or LFOs, playing with those can help make the effected signal sound more like a second singer. Use the send to blend the two signals together.
There you go: your very own ADT plugin, without investing a dime.
If you do your homework, you can do quite a bit with the gear that you already own. So, don’t just dive into purchasing new plugins. Try finding a creative solution on your own first.