How To Use A Bag Of Cereal As A Reverb


This video tutorial looks at creative sound design using Fog Convolver – a convolution processing plugin.

Fog Convolver applies the sonic character of an impulse response to another sound in real time. The video demonstrates how to use the sound of a bag of cereal as an impulse response:

Fog Convolver is available for Mac & Windows for US $75.

11 thoughts on “How To Use A Bag Of Cereal As A Reverb

  1. The above vid gives a couple good examples of what can be done with convolution. While it is great for reverbs, and once you get the hang of how it works, you can imagine other types of sounds that would work well. It also is great for creating “resonator” types of effects. For example, a small drum can add a very cool acoustic personality. There are even speaker cone thumps that add the resonance of a speaker cab. Mainstage 3 comes with the Impulse Response Utility that lets you create proper IRs from other reverb units or plugins or real spaces.

    I bought Fog Convolver on sale a few months ago and have really liked using it. Though I have access to a couple other convolution plugins, (DP’s ProVerb, and Mainstage’s Space Designer); FC is quite a bit more flexible and intuitive. The controls that are in it (especially pitch, fade-in/out, and filters) make it easy to dial in the sound you want and customize on the fly without having to alter the original IRs.

    FC comes with a library of IRs, but I wasn’t especially thrilled with it. Of course, Altiverb’s IR library is untouchable. However, if a person is a little resourceful and does a little searching, a person can find plenty of IRs that are fantastic. For example, dive into the folders of other app’s resources (NI Kontakt, DP, and others) to find their IR’s and copy them into your faves folder.

    How do you tell if an IR will sound good? Well, you can just listen to them and get an idea what they might do, but as you can tell from the cereal example above, it isn’t quite as predicable as one would think. Sometimes the crackly IR’s make very nice delay washes.

  2. there is an old joke about a girlfriend’s certain body part and the boyfriend says ” my this is big, my this is big” she says why you say it twice, and he says “I didn’t”
    that was in the “predator” movie

    sound like an interesting idea for a convoler sample

    1. There’s a similar joke where a man shines a flashlight and accidentally falls in. He hears a voice call out in the distance, follows it and finds another fellow. The man tells the fellow “If you help me find my flashlight we can walk out of here.” The fellow says “Hell, if you help me find my keys we can drive out!”

  3. The same thing is possible with Logic-s own Space Designer. I don’t really care about convolution reverb. But here’s an idea! Make a convolution reverb so that the file for reverberation calculation would scroll all the time. That way it wouldn’t sound the same all the time.

    1. That’s a cool sound-design idea. You could have maybe 3 or 4 different reverbs and use automation to crossfade among them.

      Convolution already busts a a computers CPU with longer IRs. But it should be possible.

      The other thing is that algorithmic reverbs like lexicons have some pitch warping parts of the sound that convolution doesn’t do. It would be cool to add some of that capability into the signal path somehow.

  4. Funny, I understand what this is doing, convolution, FFTs and all, it’s got a great intuitive UI and I’m sure it’s very well implemented & clever, but the end result from this video demo doesn’t really grab me: it just sounds like a lot of random delay lines, probably due to the peaks in the crispy signal.

    In comparison I find the Strymon BigSky Reverb much more interesting with non-linear transforms: vocal effects, pitch shifting, modulations etc. I use it with both synths & piano as inputs and the reverb becomes an additional musical instrument, it’s quite capable of creating atmospheric pads for example.

    Are there any VST equivalents to that?

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