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As you might have anticipated, using effects in Surround mode might become an issue because most effects are designed to work on two channels rather than four, five, or six channels. Cubase offers some surround plug-ins and support for third-party surround plug-ins through a special signal path diagram, which is accessible in the Channel Settings panel for the Surround Output Bus (see Figure E.7). This routing is also available in stereo or mono channels; however, the surround configuration only shows up when you are editing the surround output bus. By default, the section found in Figure E.7, which displays the surround routing, usually displays the inserts for this output. To change the view to edit the routing instead, select the routing option from the drop-down menu above this area.
Each vertical line in this display corresponds to a channel (ASIO device port) in the surround output bus. By assigning multiple instances of the same effect to different channels in the bus, you can effectively affect all channels in the bus. Lines that are interrupted by handles before and after the insert effect indicates that the signal will be processed by this effect on this channel inside the bus. In this example (Figure E.7), the Surround Dither effect is the only truly surround effect since it affects all channels at once. On the other hand, there are three instances of the Multiband Compressor. The first is partly hidden by the drop-down menu, but the compressor affects the first two channels (left and right), the second affects the left and right surround channels, and the third (found in the Insert 6 slot) affects the center and LFE channels. This allows you to apply the same or different settings to each pair, or each channel within the bus.
The Routing Editor (Figure E.8) displays three types of paths: broken lines with boxes, broken lines without boxes, and passing lines. The connector at the top represents the input of the insert, and the connector at the bottom represents its output. If a line is broken with a box on each side of the connector, it means that the signal is routed through the effect. In other words, the channel will be routed through that effect. In Figure E.8, this is the case for the first two lines on the left. If a line is broken without boxes, the signal is muted from this point on in the signal path. In the same figure, this is the case for the two center lines (channels). If the line passes through without breaking, it means that the signal bypasses the effect altogether (see the last two lines in the figure). You may decide to process a channel, yet send the output of this process to another channel. For example, you could process the left and right surround channels with a reverb and send the output of this reverb effect into the left and right channels instead, as is the case in the example found in Figure E.9. In this example, the left and right channels will contain both the source signal bypassing the reverb and the reverb's processed output, which contains the signal originally found on the left and right surround channels.
The set of arrows separated by the link check box moves the input channels or the output channels sideways to modify the routing. When the Link check box is active, both input and output channels will move together.
To edit the routing of an insert effect in a surround output bus configuration:
Open the VST Output Channel Settings for the Surround bus.
Assign the desired effect to the insert effect's slot.
Double-click the routing diagram. The Routing Editor dialog box will appear.
Check or uncheck the Link option, according to your needs (see description above).
Click on the input arrows (top pair) to move the connections to the desired channels.
Click on the output arrows (lower pair) to move the connections to the desired channels.
Click OK when done.
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