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Best Plugins/settings for Mixing Rap Vocals in pro tools?
Old 31st July 2011
Gear Head
🎧 5 years
Lead Vocal

Fruity blood Overdrive (give my vocals edge)



Satson Channel Plugin (Just Added) add a little bit of drive

Background Vocal

Ssl Channel and I'm good


Chorus if needed
Any delay plug as long as it's good
Old 31st July 2011
Here for the gear
🎧 5 years
for eq-ing try something like puigtech from waves and for compression cla-76 or cla2a. instead of all this chain you can put on insert the SSL channel and do all with this. from waves I really love the TrueVerb for the main vocal room.
Old 10th May 2012 | Show parent
Here for the gear
🎧 5 years
Originally Posted by bino_5150 ➡️
There is no such thing as a "best plugin" or a magical preset setting or cookie cutter plugin chain for rap vocals, rock guitars, flutes, or anything else. It's strictly program-dependent on a case-by-case basis, and all boils down to your ability to track and mix, and understand what you are doing and what you're working with.

Presets will do absolutely no good if you don't understand what's going on, and if you don't, then you won't be able to tell a good plugin from a bad one anyway.

Anyone with Waves Diamond who is asking for recommendations on more plugs to "purchase" shouldn't have to ask how to use them, imho...

A better question would have been "What are some good mixing techniques for Bone/Jay-Z/Jeezy/etc. etc. style vocals?"

You ever heard that old saying "give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day; teach him how to fish and he'll eat forever"? You've got plenty of fish homie, go get your pole...
Old 10th May 2012
Lives for gear
Stackx's Avatar
🎧 5 years
A lot of great info here. Main thing is to have quick compressor. That's only real tool for rap vocals that may be a lil different then other styles of music. But other than that it's what kind of sound fits the voice each unit has certain characteristics.
Old 25th July 2013
Gear Head
🎧 5 years
Has anyone used a the bomb factory peak limiter for rap vocals? If so, what's your opinion on it?
Old 25th July 2013
Lives for gear
archfrenemy's Avatar
🎧 5 years
I highly recommend a setting of "2" when using plugins for Rap and Hiphop music.
Old 26th July 2013
Gear Maniac
NBattistone's Avatar
🎧 5 years
So hard to answer a question like this, because as others have established, everything depends on the song, the vocalist, the performance, the mic and front end, the actual quality of the recording, so on and so forth. Saying "I use this compressor on this setting and this eq on this setting for rap vocals" really implies that you're not doing much "real mixing".
Of course we all have our 'go to' pieces, but almost as often as they work for each song, they won't work.

Typically my go to chain is something like this:
-McDSP E6 for subtractive EQ'ing, HPF and LPF (if needed).
-RCompressor with a med-slow attack and fast release, reducing gain only about a db or so. Essentially just controlling my peaks. Sometimes I will use McDSP Analog Channel 1 instead on a console setting.
-RDesser, DE555, E2Desser, or Waves Desser, attenuation and frequency set to fit the vocal. Sometimes using the C1-SC in place of my first compressor can achieve a similar result.
-1176, API 2500, SSL Channel, C4, HComp, LA2A, or CB1 depending on vocal. Medium attack, release set to tempo of song. At this point, I'm usually reducing gain 3-4db. Again, all depends on the million variables in each song.
-HEQ, Q10, EQ7B, E6, 550B, Focusrite 6band, URS EQs, or etc for any "sculpting".
-API550A to add "air" if needed.
-L1 Limiter only when needed for the track. When used, I'm only touching the peaks with about 1-2db or so of reduction. Again, all dependent on the song.
-URS Saturation, SPL Tube, Kramer Tape, DaD Valve, etc if I feel the need for warmth or saturation.

Ill also note that this is my basic ITB chain, most of the time my compression and tune saturation comes from hardware.

-Echoboy for Delay, or HDelay, Digi Delay, PCM, or Echofarm. Timing to fit song.
- Lexicon LXP Reverb, Breverb, RVerb, Altiverb, TL, Reverberate, IRL, Spring Age, CSR, external hardware verbs (TC, Lexi, Bricasti, Springs), or dare I say DVerb on the rare occasion...

Then, depending on the track, I could send to a chorus, a doubler or harmonizer, FutzBox, Speakerphone, Filter, Vocoder, etc etc etc

Also... On almost every hip hop track, I will send out to a parallel compressor running an 1176 or CLA76, with all buttons in, med-slow attack, fast release, hitting between 5-10db of reduction at least, and potentially running serial on the same bus may be a Fatso that barely touches my vocal.
Then I will blend the two to taste. Also, I never mentioned the decision about group/buss processing and individual processing, but that too depends on the track.

As far as presets go, they are a good starting point when you are first starting out, but honestly, especially as a beginner, I often advise people to avoid the presets when starting out, so you can more quickly learn how to dial in the right settings, and be able to tell the difference between them. If you're relying on presets and then just tweaking them, it may take you longer to understand why those settings are the way they are and how they affect the track. But everyone works differently.
Also, if you ever have the ability, and you are making new purchases, maybe consider a very versatile hardware piece (channel strip or compressor). It's great to be able to track 'to tape' with, and besides... Nothing beats turning knobs. Plus... It will help you learn to rely on your ears as opposed to what's on the screen.
That's just my outlook on stuff at least, you never know, I just might be ******** heh heh
Old 26th July 2013
Gear Nut
🎧 5 years
I like using RVox as a vocal compressor for hip hop vocals. I use OldSkoolVerb with a 0.3 second time, ModernDeEsser
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