Audio Engineering

Use Saturation Effectively In Your Mixes

Saturation Tutorial in Studio One
Comments (30)
  1. Martin Weeks says:

    WOW!! WOW!!! WOW!!! etc. Man what a superb video and what amazing plugins.
    I’ve had the “Saturation Knob” for well over a year now and have loved it from the very start, but as David Moon correctly points out, it’s range before getting really unstable or distorted is limited. And as he showed, I’ve resorted to all manner of way to tame it and of course used up all my CPU in the process.
    So his use of the Blue Cat Gain Suite was amazing and an absolute solution to a problem that’s plagued me since I started.
    His use of the pre and post makes complete total sense to my “non engineer” brain” and that’s always good.
    His tutorial was excellent (please tell him that for me Warren?) I’m impressed and heading over to his website shortly…Definitely want his YouTube Videos in my subscriptions.
    He seems like a wonderful person to know. Calm, well spoken and very clear in his delivery of important details (a + always considering the amount of b.s. tutorials flooding YouTube these days.)
    I’m impressed, stoked!! And most importantly I have to work on some vocals tonight and tomorrow that need to be “Polished” and this might be just exactly what I need. YAY!!!
    Also, David is a very good teacher for Studio One which is now the DAW of my choice. I’m always looking for the techniques and processes of work flow with it. And there seems to always be some cool little thing in S1 that one can never find in the manual.
    (Just for reference on this point there is another gentleman who hails from Edinborough ? Scotland named Johnny Lipsham who also is a wizard on Studio One. So if anyone on this website is a Studio One person, he is also a great reference for mixing in S1)

    But man!! My hats off to David Moon…I will be checking his website out shortly.

    Thank You Warren very much…as a Studio One User, this video really REALLY helped me both in long term and for an immediate need I can put to use right now.


    1. Martin Weeks says:

      Where is David Moon’s website or YouTube Channel? When I type in David Moon or David Moon drummer, all the search engine comes up with is drummer Keith Moon from the Who. Nice drummer too but not the Moon I’m looking for.

      1. Sara says:

        Try Studio One Expert for more of David’s videos

    2. David Mood says:

      Hi Martin, wow, wow, wow, etc. 🙂
      Thank you for this wonderful comment, I am blushed! I have to print this out, and hang it on my wall.
      Please tell everyone that I haven’t payed you to write this post, haha!
      As Sara mentioned, you can find some more videos by me at Studio One Expert (put David MooD in the search field ;), and also there are two more videos by me on Warren’s channel.
      Many thanks again, David

      1. Martin Weeks says:

        Happy Holidays to you and family David.
        Merry Christmas to All.
        Marty Weeks

        1. David Mood says:

          Thank you Marty, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and your family as well! David

          1. Martin Weeks says:

            Thank you Sir and same back to you.

  2. Robert says:

    Great! These same work flow features are in Sonar, I am going to have the same set up in an FX chain now!

    1. David Mood says:

      Great to hear, Robert!

  3. Jeppe says:

    Great vid David! I will try this in Reason as well. Funny, I was actually thinking about this problem and I´m amazed that it doesn’t already is built in avery plugin already. It is quite essential just to hear what the plugin does without any gain added.. But it is like the dry/ wet or mix knob! Soon it on every plugin! 😉 I hope…

    1. Martin Weeks says:

      Actually some are. Newtron from Izotope is far and away the biggest one where they have all manner of input/output control for everything from compression to EQ and Gate. They also have the linking and reversing feature to augment and avoid masking.
      Their is also an inexpensive plugin from Plugin Alliance called “Character” which I think is a version of a saturation knob type of thing. Allows for you to dial into specific frequency ranges for tonal color and has input/out put controls. Three general setting for vocals, bass, drums and instruments.
      I use that to speed up the process of tonal control on tracks. Helps a lot.
      However, using David Moon’s preset configuration will still make a wonderful difference on tracks like vocals, bass, horns etc.
      Question for all…how would this process using Blue Cat’s Gain syncing and the Saturation Knob work as a parallel processing tool? (not side chaining but parallel?

      1. Martin Weeks says:

        Oh yeah just a quicky note for Studio One users
        If you are adding your preset (Blue Cat Gain and Saturation knob) to a track that already has other plugins inserted…make sure you do the drag and drop from the browser. If you use the down arrow for short cut to your presets, it will replace whatever other settings you’ve already placed. No undo for that, you’d have to close the project without saving and re open.
        I found that out yesterday. However, just drag and drop from the browser window and you’ll have no problems.

    2. David Mood says:

      Thank you Jeppe! Many plug-ins have an input and/or output gain knob, but very few actually have the two linked, to compensate for loudness increase automatically. The Waves Kramer Master Tape is the only plug-in in my collection which has that.

  4. Joel Glaser says:

    Some awesome ideas. Thank you for sharing this Warren!! And thanks to David Moon.

    1. David Mood says:

      Thank you! David MooD here 🙂

      1. Joel Glaser says:

        Sorry David. My bad. Great video, non the less! lol

        1. David Mood says:

          No problem Joel! Many thanks, David

  5. jim says:

    thanks Warren and David! love this! I already use softube saturation and blue cat eq’s, to add the blue cat gain plug -ins is a
    slam dunk..!!

  6. sleepy says:

    Awesome. I do have a question, tho. I am new to Studio One and need to know: where are my effects I downloaded? I mean, I know where they are, but how do I get them into my effects folder?

    1. David Mood says:

      Hi, do you mean 3rd party plug-ins? You need to “tell” Studio One their location on your hard drive in the options.

      1. sleepy says:

        Thank you for your reply. I don’t know quite how to do that. I have Soft Tube installed, but I can’t do anything with it. The Blackcat plug-ins just sit there looking at me. When I drag them anywhere, I just get the symbol which means that it’s not going anyplace. I have Studio One Artist which may be the problem. Thank you. btw, the video is really great. Can’t wait to use it.

        1. David Mood says:

          Studio One Artist doesn’t have VST-support, that is the problem indeed. There is an add-on which you can purchase in the PreSonus shop which enables VST-support, or you could upgrade to S1 Pro which gives you all features of S1.

          1. sleepy says:

            Thank you for your help. I was afraid of that. I would very much like to upgrade, but on a fixed, limited income. I really wanted to get in on the 50% off upgrade, but my check doesn’t come until the 30th. Two days late! lol When I do upgrade, I will be one more step closer to paradise. Keep the great tutorials coming.

          2. David Mood says:

            Hi sleepy, I’ve just seen that the 50% off upgrade deal is valid until December 2 at Sweetwater. So you could still take advantage of the offer 🙂

          3. sleepy says:

            Thank you. I missed it. thanx anyway.

  7. metalsine says:

    Awesome idea how to keep the output in place. The splitter is a cool feature in Studio One, too. In Cubase there isn’t such a thing :(.
    Cool video! Really appreciated.

    1. David Mood says:

      Thank you, metalsine! Yes I love the splitter, has to be my favourite feature of Studio One 3!
      As far as I know, no other DAW has something like this yet, but I could be wrong.
      Many thanks, David

  8. Andy carney says:

    Great video. Just a quick question ….. When would you use saturation as opposed to parallel distortion?

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