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How To Create a Frequency Sweep Effect in Pro Tools 8

Updated on March 6, 2010
Add the EQ 3 1-Band Effect Plug In
Add the EQ 3 1-Band Effect Plug In

So you want to create a frequency sweep on a portion of audio to get that gradual transition to big and boomy or thin and squished or anything in between. It is actually very easy to do in Pro Tools 8.

First add a EQ 3 1-Band effect plug in to the track you would like to give this frequency sweep to (As shown in the first picture).

Next click the Plug-In Automation Enable Button. It looks like 2 rectangles, one on top of the other and is directly below the word Auto as shown in the picture below.

EQ 3 1-Band Effect Plug-In
EQ 3 1-Band Effect Plug-In
Plug-In Automation Window
Plug-In Automation Window
Automation is now in the menu
Automation is now in the menu

A window will now pop up called Plug-In Automation. Click on Gain on the left and then click the Add button and do the same for Frequency on the left and hit the Add button. Both of the words should now be on the right and look like the picture to the right. You will need both of these automation enabled to get that frequency sweep effect you are looking for.

Now, when you click the menu on the track you will see the added automation options for EQ 3 1-Band and in the sub menu Frequency and Gain as pictured to the right. Click on Frequency to start change it's automation. You may want to click on the plug in itself to change the type depending on what type of frequency sweep you want it to sound like. Experiment with these to find the sound you are looking for.

Below is an example of the type of automation that a frequency sweep looks like. You can make it happen as quickly or slowly as you like by increasing the slope of the ramp. The quicker it is the more noticeable and really slow can be almost undetectable until the listener realizes it doesn't sound like it did 2 minutes ago. Do the same thig with the gain. You may want the gain at one place the whole time or you may want to sweep it also. If gain is at 0 you will hear no difference in the frequency sweep.  You must give it some power, either positive or negative, to hear the frequency sweep effect.

Frequency Sweep Automation
Frequency Sweep Automation

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