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Generating Pink Noise in Reason: A Step-by-Step Guide

May 17, 2024

If you're a music producer or audio engineer, chances are you've come across the term 'pink noise'. Pink noise is a type of signal that has equal energy per octave and is often used for various applications in audio production such as testing and balancing the frequency response of a sound system. Propellerhead's Reason is a popular digital audio workstation (DAW) used by many music producers, and generating pink noise in Reason can be useful for various purposes. In this article, we'll walk you through the process of generating pink noise using Reason's built-in devices.

  1. Setting up the Rack Environment
    Start by creating a new file in Reason or opening an existing project. In the rack window, create a new audio track by right-clicking on the empty space and selecting 'Create Audio Track' or by using the keyboard shortcut (Ctrl+T or Cmd+T).

  2. Adding the Noise Generator
    Now, search for the 'Kong Drum Designer' device in the Reason's Browser (located on the left side of the screen) and drag it into the newly created audio track. Kong Drum Designer is a powerful drum machine and synthesizer that can be used to create a variety of sounds, including pink noise.

  3. Configuring the Noise Generator

With the Kong Drum Designer now in your rack, click on the 'Show Drum and FX' button to reveal the settings for each drum pad. Select an empty drum pad and choose the 'Noise' type from the available options. In the 'Noise Parameters' section, adjust the 'Color' knob all the way to the left to set the noise color to pink. You can also adjust the 'Level' and 'Decay' settings to taste, but for now, we'll leave them at their default values.

  1. Routing the Sound to the Mixer
    In the rack view, switch to the 'Rear' view by pressing the 'Tab' key. You'll now see the back panel of the Kong Drum Designer. Connect the '1+2' output of the Kong Drum Designer to any available channel in your mixer. Flip back to the front panel by pressing the 'Tab' key again.

  2. Triggering the Pink Noise
    Now, you must create a pattern in the Reason's sequencer to trigger the pink noise you just set up in the Kong Drum Designer. Create a new pattern by double-clicking on the empty space in the sequencer window. Using the pencil tool, draw a note on the drum pad you assigned the pink noise to. Adjust the start and end points of the pattern as needed.

  3. Balancing Levels and EQ

With your pink noise playing through your speakers or headphones, you can now use it to balance the levels and EQ of your existing mix. Compare the overall frequency response of your mix to the pink noise signal, making adjustments to your track's levels and EQ settings as needed to achieve a balanced and even sound.

Now that you know how to generate pink noise in Reason, you have a powerful tool for your audio production toolkit. Using pink noise as a reference for balancing your mixes can help you achieve consistent and cohesive sound across your entire project.

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