This video tutorial explains what a spreader plugin does and how to use one to make your sounds wider.
As we all try to make our music as wide and deep as possible, there are a lot of things to consider and using the right tools along the way makes all the difference. This lesson covers how and why you may want to use a spreader plugin to make your sounds wider. It also touches on a variety of things to be on the lookout for so you can avoid some common mistakes. The first thing to take note of is that not all spread techniques and tools are created equal, nor are they intended to be used for the same purposes. A spreader is actually a type of modulation effect and can therefore have a but affect upon the phase correlation of your sounds!
Using a simple metering tool to monitor your phase correlation activity while using a spreader on your sounds is definitely recommended. This way you can see and hear the effect it has upon your sound as you make adjustments in real-time. You have four main parameters to play with on a basic spreader plugin. Mix allows you to blend your wet (affected) and dry (un-affected) signal to achieve the balance you want. Delay allows you to set the amount of channel delay. Speed allows your to set the rate at which the modulation occurs (measured in Hertz). Intensity allows you to adjust the overall impact the effect has upon your sound.
Once you get the hang of using your correlation meter and spreader tool in tandem, it should become quite easy to find that sweet spot where you achieve more width, yet avoid affecting your audio that allows the listener to perceive the actual modulation. There are many other ways to make your sounds wider, so keep in mind that a spreader will not always be your best option. So don’t force it if you struggle to find the right balance.