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Quick Plugin Question

Discussion in 'Backline' started by ragzy02, Oct 25, 2014.

  1. ragzy02

    ragzy02 New Metal Member

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    Can anyone tell me what the difference in a mono/stereo plugin is?

    I'm familiar with the regular mono OR stereo plugins, but a lot of my plugins have different versions and say mono/stereo.

    Example: I bought the Waves Doubler and it has the following versions.

    Doubler2 (Mono)
    Doubler2 (Stereo)
    Doubler2 (Mono/Stereo)

    Does that mean it converts a mono signal to a stereo one maybe?

    I appreciate your time if you respond.
     
  2. Hawkevil

    Hawkevil Member

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    I tend to stay away from stereo tracks. The only times I use stereo is when using overheads from Superior drummer. Everything else is mono. It's just easier and less confusing to work with that way.

    Saying that, it means I don't have a lot of experience messing with stereo plugins for that reason so I could be wrong but I believe if you have a stereo track going into a mono plugin then you are going to end up with a mono signal. If you go into a stereo plugin but with a mono track it will technically turn it into stereo at the stage you have the stereo plugin.

    For example, mono guitar track into a stereo chorus effect. You will get the widening effect of the chorus but it will still essentially be a mono track but with a slight delay coming out of one speaker making it sound stereo. Then if you were to add a mono plugin after that it would convert it back to mono and you would lose the widening effect.

    It can get quite confusing. For example, some EQ's give you the option for stereo where you can add EQ settings to each side separately. This will only work properly with a stereo track.

    Simply put, if you have a mono track then stick with mono plugins unless you want to widen it and if you have a stereo track then stick with stereo plugins unless you want to make it mono.

    BUT there is an exception though which is probably the one you want to stick with unless you want to add different effects to each side of a stereo track, that is the one you mentioned in your list "Doubler2 Mono/Stereo", this allows you to run a mono or stereo track through the plugin and it won't change that. Meaning you can add an EQ to a stereo track and it will effect both sides the same.

    I'm 95% sure this is correct but if I'm wrong then anyone feel free to correct me, haha.
     
  3. ragzy02

    ragzy02 New Metal Member

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    That all sounds correct to me. I appreciate your time answering my question.

    If I ever hear of find out otherwise (about the mono/stereo plugin thing), I will certainly let you know, but I don't see anything wrong with what you said.

    As always, rock on!
     
  4. ragzy02

    ragzy02 New Metal Member

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    By the way HawkEvil, what guitar amp(s) or amp sims and cab(s) did you use on that track that's in your signature line?

    Sounds great. Very clean distortion tone. Love it.
     
  5. Hawkevil

    Hawkevil Member

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  6. ragzy02

    ragzy02 New Metal Member

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    Very cool bro. That LePou stuff is possibly the best freeware audio software ever created. Just unreal how good it can be when you put it together with someone who knows how to use it. haha!

    Btw, really diggin' that off-beat shit right after the one minute mark. And of course the leadwork. Great chops man.
     
  7. Hawkevil

    Hawkevil Member

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    Thanks man. Really appreciated!

    Yea, people write off amp sims but with a bit of persuasion they can sound just as good as the real thing. The better amp sims become the less persuading they need, haha.
     
  8. Kohugaly

    Kohugaly Member

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    Basically mono plugin has one input and one output channel. If you use mono plugin in a stereo track most DAWs will handle it in a way that they sum the channels send them to the input and the (mono)output of the plugin is copied to both output channels.
    Stereo plugin has two inputs and two outputs, which naturally means it receives stereo signal and outputs stereo signal. This usually means that the channels are processed somewhat differently or at least separately. If you put stereo plugin on a mono track then your DAW simply sends the mono channel to both inputs and the outputs of your plugin are summed back to mono (loosing all stereo information that might have been created by the plugin).

    With mono/stereo plugins it is rather tricky. For example many ampsims (LePou as an example) have mono/stereo switch on their front panel. When in stereo mode, they process left and right channels separately. When in mono mode, they still have two inputs and two outputs but internally behave as mono (processing only one channel and sending it to both outputs).

    Plugins may have multiple inputs and outputs for example many compressors have additional input for external sidechain. Drum samplers have multiple outputs for individual drums, etc. There are even plugins that work in 5.1 surround sound.

    Rule of thumb is to use stereo plugins on stereo tracks and mono plugins on mono tracks. When using stereo plugin on mono track you usually just waste CPU. When using mono plugins on stereo track you loose the stereo information.
     

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