Using vocoder in Reason 4

Found a good tutorial today on how to get the most out of the Vocoder in Reason, make sure to try it out.

Short on Reason’s vocoder below:

BV512 Vocoder


Besides being a 4 to 512-band vocoder capable of modulating sound in both old-school analog style and digital FFT fashion, this unit also doubles as a fully automated equalizer with a twist. The BV-512 can be used for everything from classic robot vocals to weird harmonic effects.

To Vocode

A vocoder takes two input signals, the carrier, which provides the pitch, and the modulator, supplying the characteristics.

Traditional vocoders require you to sing into a microphone while playing a keyboard. Not this one – with the BV-512 you can combine any two sound sources. Try vocoding your percussion track with the bass line or the string pad with the rhythm guitar.

The Bands

A vocoder splits the incoming audio into a number of frequency bands. More bands gives you more control and more detail. Where most vocoders max out at eight to sixteen bands, the BV-512 gives you up to, you guessed it, 512 bands. In 4-band mode, the BV- 512 provides a gritty, analog, lo-fi sound. The 512- band setting is another beast altogether. In this mode, a digital 1024-point FFT-based algorithm provides the clearest, most detailed and most audible vocoding you ever heard from a computer.

The EQ

Hitting the EQ switch on the front panel calls up a handy parametric and low shelving equalizer for additional tweaking of your reverberated signal. Combine this section with the HF Damp and HF Smooth knobs on the front panel, and be the master of your wet signal’s every frequency.

The Gate

A flick of a switch turns the BV-512 into a 4 to 512 band stereo equalizer. Use the higher settings for detailed control of the spectrum.

Or try the four and eight band modes for a decidedly more lo-fi sound that adds an unmistakable vocoder “color” to your input signal.


Like all other Reason devices, the BV-512 Vocoder can be fully automated, band level settings included. Record your front panel actions, or use the pen tool to draw in layers upon layers of wild frequency changes. The Shift knob is just one example of a control that’s dying to be automated. One session with BV-512 and you’re hooked for life.


~ by steelberryclones on November 7, 2008.

4 Responses to “Using vocoder in Reason 4”

  1. How do you get the audio in there in the first place?

  2. Hey your page is awesome. one question Im new to rea 4 . how do i get my vocals in the vocoder? Please help me. or 717-517-7779
    lancaster pa


    • Hi Dave

      Using the vocoder in R4 requires some basic set ups. The easiest way to get started is to load three different devices;
      1. A NN19
      2. A Subtractor, and
      3. The vocoder

      The NN19 has to be set to use the so called “Init patch”, not the default sound, this is loaded on the left “load button”, than in the center load button you upload your vocals. Than you have to switch the back of your gear rack to connect manually the NN19 to the Subtractor synth (here you can use the default sound). The Subtractor in turn is connected to the Vocoder, which than is routed to the mixer.

      Then what you have to do is to play the NN19 at C3 all through the song, as one tone. When done with this you will need to switch to the Subtractor and play some notes that basically tells the Vocoder how to play your vocals. You can pretty much have a standard note system, you will have to try to see what works for you.

      After this you have to start fine tuning the Vocoder to make sure that it sounds the way you have envisioned it.

      Cheers Ola

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