effects help ?and constructive criticism needed

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stephenthemartyr
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Hey am recording myself playing guitar and singing and using hydrogen as drums and it sounds ok but i am pretty new and in ardour there are like 100 different effects and most I have no idea what they even do,and i cant find a place that explains them and/or just goes thru them.I realize this may be an annoying question but i really would appreciate the help.

Also I have a few rough draft recordings,anyone willing to take a listen and tell me what i am doing wrong or right?

plingativator
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If you don't mind paying a little bit of money for your effects then I can definitely recommend LinuxDSP. They have most of the basic things you'll want and they all work really well and reliably. I'm personally afraid of using most of the free plugins because I've had very scary loud things happen when playing around with them in the past. That being said I know that other people use them with lots of success, I'm just not sure exactly which ones are the best.

Also, you should explain what kind of effects you are looking for. Basic EQ, compression and reverb stuff? Or crazier things?

christophski
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This is more aimed towards guitar effects pedals, but it gives you a pretty good basic summary of what the different types of effects do:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effects_unit

stephenthemartyr
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Hey guys thanks for not making fun of me,its tough bieng a novice ya know.Unfortunately I cant afford to buy any (i have Lyme disease and it messed me up.../long story..boring)
Im looking for help with basic effects I guess in the recording process.I understand if it sounds like crap no effect will make it good.So i am looking for ideas,hints,how-to manuals for all the linux effects(that would be perrrrfect)but i use hydrogen and i put some compression on the kick and snare,maybe a tad of reverb not much)And I try to use eq and compression with my guitar in ardour but not really having lots of success there.I just look at the list of effects and pretty much am overwhelmed by not normal ones(distortion,reverb,delay,chorus,flanger,compression,eq,ect.)
I have a boss me-50 multi effects processor but it doesn't always get the best sounds so i also started to buy single pedals a few years ago and I have boss compression/sustainer,boss ge-7 equalizer,electro mistress chorus/flanger,and MXR phase 90 and i have been running my guitar through that mess into my behringer 10 channel mixer/PA into my computer.
I just brought upstairs my fender deluxe 112 and I may try a mic on it but I don't have any soundproofing materials sooooo,Yes thats lots of info.Help?please?

Thisisquitealongname
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I'm just getting over the steepest bit of the learning curve. A few links that have helped me:

Free Plugins:
Watch Out for Denormals with these. Turn on DenormalsAreZero, FlushToZero and DC Bias if you are using them.
http://ardour.org/node/3277

Steve Harris wrote surprisingly good documentation for his set of LADSPA plugins (assuming you're on linux). His plugins tend to suffer from denormal issues, as do the TAP and Calf sets. Otherwise they're all excellent.
http://plugin.org.uk/ladspa-swh/docs/ladspa-swh.html

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If you don't have much money, then you're probably on linux. And if you're on linux, be prepared to invest ridiculous amounts of time setting up a working system. For every one thing you have to do, there are three things you have to learn. Such is the quilted patchwork nature of *nix. It's great, sometimes.

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For all-in-one guitar amps, check out Rakarrack and GX-Head. Of the two, I tend to use gx-head. There's also a simple 'sqrt(A)' ladspa plugin that gives awesome distortion. But more often than not I usually just crank up the input gain and limiter on my Edirol/Roland UA-25EX, which was an awesome buy. It's more or less facilitated all of my audio work regardless of whether it passed directly through the device. Onboard soundcards really struggle to keep up with jack.

Synths:

Don't bother trying to get VSTs to work. It's not worth the trouble.

Zynaddsubfx. The first time I looked at it, I was confused and scared. I didn't touch it for half a year. Then, frustrated by the lack of versatility of pretty much every other synth available, I came back to it. And wow. It can do anything.

Xsynth is simple, sounds good and is an easy entrance point.

Phasex is also a good sounding synth. It's different but ultimately not as versatile as Zynaddsubfx and I never could get it completely stable. Stability is king.