Bootleg Surgical Sidechain - An Audio Triggered, Volume Shaping, Auto-PDC'd, Multiband Sidechain Tool

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Mon May 11, 2020 3:45 am


Bootleg Surgical Sidechain - An Audio Triggered, Volume Shaping, Auto-PDC'd, Multiband Sidechain Tool


This is a multi-band, volume-shaping based Sidechain tool which automatically gets all the timing right. It's best used on basses in EDM, to get them to as transparently as possible fit together cleanly with your kick and snare.

You have user-facing control over your band split, easy access to the depth (amount of ducking) and duration (multiplicative scaling of the entire volume shape, and a mute button for each band for convenience and transparency during adjustments.

It's neither:
  • Too early because of missing plugin delay compensation, a common issue with volume-shaping plugins like Cableguys Volumeshaper or Xfer's LFO tool, because it triggers based on audio - you feed it a very fast full spectrum click as it's sidechain input, and that because that's passed at audio-rate it's automatically PDC'd by FL-studio. This audio can trigger the volume envelope through black magic involving fruity peak controller and midi out (read more here). This lets the plugin be placed anywhere in an FX chain, even after plugins which introduce large amounts of latency, and still be correctly timed.
  • Too late because of imperfect automation timing, because it uses a fruity limiter's attack knob (with no threshold or ceiling engaged, to make it transparent) to intentionally introduce delay to the incoming audio to be sidechained relative to the sidechain input. This allows for manual adjustment to the timing of the envelope relative to your sidechain trigger to get things lined up perfectly.

As you can see, despite plugin delay on the bass track, we still get "blue" (high frequency only) transients on the master, and no visible/audible gap between the end of the bass and start of the kick. (Image courtesy of the lovely plugin Oscillos MegaScope)

to use:
  • Set up two very fast full spectrum clicks (the isolated transient of a kick should work nicely), and route them to mixer tracks A and B, while muting those tracks output to master. These will be our sidechain triggers for our kick and snare (or clap). (I like to create a project template with this routing already done, for convenience)
  • Set up audio to be sidechained, and route it to mixer track C
  • Route mixer tracks A and B to mixer track C in side chain mode
  • Open patcher on mixer track C, and load the preset (do this only after setting up the sidechain inputs, or you'll have to re-connect your audio inputs in the first layer of the patcher preset!)
  • Trigger sidechains via your clicks (I like to use a fruity Layer to trigger the kick channels and the click channels using one step sequencer blip)
Feel free to contact me on discord at "AthertonWing#0001" with issues, questions or comments!

Happy Sidechaining!
Audio Triggered Volume Shaping Multiband Sidechain.fst
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