I was playing a fairly clean FM synth tone and mixing a dry signal with a chorus effect signal. The mixed sound was strangely quiet, and I suspect the chorus delay lined up to destructively interfere with the dry signal.

Does this make sense?

Are there particular strategies to avoid this, or just use your ears every time and and deal with it note by note?

  • Are you mixing dry/wet in the plugin, or splitting in the mixer?
    – Tetsujin
    Sep 22 '20 at 18:22
  • It’s a hardware mixer and effects. Effect sends are “post fader” so it always mixes dry with effect output. The effect itself can’t be full wet, it’s always a mix. Not ideal but it’s what I have at the moment... considering other options/hardware/etc.
    – z5h
    Sep 22 '20 at 18:44
  • 1
    With hardware fx, I'd either use the effect full wet mixed with direct, or mix it entirely in the effect with no direct; try to avoid any direct signal from both at a the same time, which may be slightly time delayed due to latency in the hardware unit.
    – Tetsujin
    Sep 22 '20 at 18:47

Just to make sure: if changing the delay time on your effect leads to a big change in volume, the delay was the culprit. If not, you've got a phase inversion somewhere (balanced cable with the + and - swapped, or the delay output is inverted, etc.).

Theoretically it should be possible to calculate this: take a list of notes and their frequencies, convert to the delay period that corresponds with half a sine wave (180º phase difference). The problem is, you end up with a massive number of delay times you have to avoid (not just 180º, but all multiples of 360 plus 180).

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