Controls and Effects

Controls and Effects

Gain Control

  • Gain control determines the level of the input signal that comes into a device or software.
  • It is an important aspect of achieving a clean and distortion-free signal in your recordings.
  • Adjusting the gain too high can result in clipped or distorted sound, whereas setting it too low can introduce noise.

Equalisation (EQ)

  • Equalisation is used to balance the frequency content of audio.
  • It can boost, cut, or attenuate specific frequency ranges within an audio signal.
  • EQ is a critical tool in both the recording and mixing processes, helping to manipulate and shape the tone of the audio.


  • Panning is the distribution of a sound signal into a stereo or multi-channel sound field.
  • It is used creatively to give a sense of space in a mix, by assigning different instruments to different positions within the stereo field.
  • Panning can be automated in a DAW to create sound movement.


  • Compression reduces the dynamic range of an audio signal.
  • It does this by lessening the volume of loud sounds or amplifying quiet ones, thereby reducing or compressing an audio signal’s dynamic range.
  • Compression can help make the louder and quieter parts of an audio file more consistent in volume.

Reverb and Delay

  • Reverb simulates the natural reflections of sound in a physical space.
  • Delay is an effect that records an input and then plays it back after a period of time, creating an echo effect.
  • Both effects can add depth to your mix and make the audio sound like it was recorded in a specific acoustic environment.

Distortion and Overdrive

  • Distortion and Overdrive are effects used to change the sound of an instrument or voice.
  • They can make a sound rougher, add warmth, or even mimic the sound of a overdriven amplifier.
  • These effects are commonly used on guitars but can be used creatively on other instruments as well.

Modulation Effects

  • Modulation effects, like chorus, flanger, and phaser, create a richer, thicker sound by duplicating the audio signal and altering the pitch or timing of the duplicate.
  • These effects can add depth and movement to your audio, enhancing the sonic texture of your mix.
  • Modulation effects are often used to create a ‘wider’ stereo image in a mix.