What Do Sends Do — How Can They Benefit Me?

Ever wondered what those sends on the end FL Studio’s mixer are for? This video, and blog post, will answer that question for you :).

Before getting into the tutorial, let’s go over some of the terminology used names for sends; there’s actually quite a few, all meaning the same thing of course — Auxiliary sends, Aux-sends, and Send Channels to name a few.

If you feel that your mixes are lacking power, warmth, creativity, fullness etc. I think it’s time for you to learn about sends!

Auxiliary Sends are POWERFUL,

Aux-Sends - FL Studio

Simply put, a send is a parallel signal routed from the original signal, allowing you to tweak the sends audio, anyway you’d like WITHOUT having to effect the original sound!

Now, easy explanation — Let’s work on a kick drum for our example.

You have a kick drum on a normal mixer insert. You’ve applied a little bit of EQ and compression. But.. now, you want to add some effects to the drum.. but you don’t want to lose the sound you’ve already mixed with your EQ and compression — This is simple; this is what sends are for!

Within FL Studio, simply click on another mixer track, and left click the arrow. You will now see a mix knob, you have no created a send channel. Also, if you play the sound, you’ll hear that all you have done is just double the volume, because you are routing it twice to the master channel now — So what do you do? — Apply a plugin with a WET signal only.

Aux-Sends — Wet Signal ONLY,

Continuing on with our story above. Let’s say the effect you want to add is reverb.

On the new mixer track (the send), the one that you just routed/created, you want to apply a reverb plugin. Usually reverb/delay plugins have a wet and dry option on the plugin itself. Dial down the DRY signal. The dry signal is the original signal, no effects are in the audio at all. (Except for the EQ and compression we applied to make the kick drum sound how we wanted, even before routing the mixer track).

You should now hear your kick drum how you mixed it, and WAY too much reverb. This is the awesome benefits of aux-sends. Turn down the volume of the send, or adjust the mix knob at the bottom, and you can simply apply how much reverb you’d like, without having to effect the dry kick drum you’ve previously mixed.

This is how parallel compression is done for kick drums, how background delay is done on vocals, or just adding a bit of reverb to an overall percussion loop.

Sends are powerful. Gaining the knowledge of how to use sends will advance your mixes, and get them sounding professional quickly. If the effect is too much, simply dial it back, and leave the original audio untouched.

Sends — Last Minute Thoughts,

The sky is really the limit with sends, as you are able to gently blend the wet signal into the dry.

I also learnt this awesome vocal tip by Grahm Cochrane, regarding vocals.

Send your vocal to a send channel with a delay on it. Now, simply EQ out some highs with a low pass filter. This creates a very warm sounding vocal, and fills up the song by providing more pleasing sound to the vocal with the background adlibs.

Overall, you can see how powerful sends can be. They will really spice up your percussion loops and “fill up” what feels like is “missing” in your tracks since the audio is continually playing (just at a lower volume, and kind of in the background, therefore “gently filling” the “empty parts” of the loop).

Let me know if sends have really added that little “extra” into your tracks!

Check out more tutorials by Beatstruggles!