How to Use Delays on Vocals




Delays and echoes are the sauce that adds the required vibe to any modern vocal performance.

But don’t be fooled, not all delays are created equally! There’s short delays, long delays, bright delays and trippy delays just to name a few.

In this tutorial Fab Dupont guides you through how and why he sets up short, medium and long delays on a mix.

Learn about:

  • When to use rhythmic delays
  • What is the Haas effect
  • Filtering your delays to create color in a mix
  • Layering multiple delays

From subtle halos to sparkling spices, glowing auras to cushions of clouds, delays are an essential element of any modern mix!

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Fab Dupont

Fab Dupont is an award-winning NYC based record producer, mixing/mastering engineer and co-founder of

Fab has been playing, writing, producing and mixing music both live and in studios all over the world. He's worked in cities like Paris, Boston, Brussels, Stockholm, London and New York just to name a few.

He has his own studio called FLUX Studios in the East Village of New York City.

Fab has received many accolades around the world, including wins at the Victoires de la Musique, South African Music awards, Pan African Music Awards, US independent music awards. He also has received Latin Grammy nominations and has worked on many Latin Grammy and Grammy-nominated albums.


David Crosby

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Toots And The Maytals

What do you have to say?
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2020 Nov 05
At first i was a little put off by the snobbish french attitude of Fab.... But his humor grew on me , then in this intro I literally laughed out loud , all the coworkers thought I went nuts...
2020 Apr 26
Gracias papu :)
2019 Nov 07
Bellissimo video.
2018 Jun 11
Should you use a Haas delay for all vocals, including harmony, doubles or background? Or is this primarily for the lead vocal?
2017 Sep 22
Both the video and the content: fabulous. But Fab speaks very quickly and the translation written in Spanish sometimes does not give time to read it. There are also phrases that are not well translated (or Fab says strange things) and have no meaning in the context.
2017 May 20
Bravo! So useful
2017 Jan 29
Thanks you! Clear and helpful!
2016 Dec 16
Very helpful! THX
2016 Dec 14
2016 Jul 27
really great!! best regards from Chile.
Fabulous Fab
2016 Jan 14
@CCHorton: Universal Records did not do the best job at distributing this otherwise fantastic record. The best would be to write to the artist. They are great people.
Fabulous Fab
2016 Jan 14
@ ccbass2: point taken. Will experiment with more transparent ways to A/B. Thanks for the feedback
Fabulous Fab
2016 Jan 14
@djdrew: Both. As you get more used to the sounds you'll be able to decide which you;re in the mood for that day.
2016 Jan 14
Great stuff Fab! So would you use this as an addition to reverb or as an alternative?
2015 Nov 23
I love your tutorials but I find it frustrating, distracting and breaks concentration when you demonstrate BEFORE & AFTER by stopping the track and announcing that you are doing that. It's enough that there is a fantastic visual indicating that the effect is active or bypassed. Also switching multiple times allows the listener to reference the differences. Regards
2015 Jul 07
Awesome video! I was trying to find Disaster Queen, but iTunes and Amazon only have them on mp3, which I find unacceptable to listen to. Any idea where I can get a real, full resolution, tangible copy of their album???
2015 Jun 02
Awesome vid, Fab. Thank you.
2015 Mar 23
Yeah, nice! Thank you VERY MUCH...UCH...uch...h
2015 Mar 22
Sweeeet! Multiple delays, thanks for the breakdown!
2015 Mar 21
ahhhhhh!! I've never gotten delays to feel right to me. I love the fact that you talk about philosophy rather than just technique.
2015 Mar 15
Best tutorial on how to use delay EVER!!!! Thanks Fab.
2015 Mar 08
Love it! Thank you, that's a new take on delay for me.
Some Guy
2015 Mar 03
Neat. Great example material for getting the points across right away. Gotta say though, I found the super ultra compression on Fab's voice (or is it a cold?) kinda distracting to listen to. Most of us are not listening to these videos on our laptop speakers, so more of a natural approach to the voice would be welcome. Or maybe I should just try a different breakfast. ;-)
Alberto Rizzo Schettino
2015 Feb 25
@Tolchocks: Both Haas-Delays and "Office reverbs" are great for pushing things back or adding halos around something that is too "definite". Early reflections are indeed closely related to the Haas effect. I believe both methods are great and you have to have both at your disposal to determine which fits better in a specific case. Often times, even with the same settings, a simple delay is more "artificial" and dehydrated when compared to the sound of a reverb plugin calculating early reflections. Sometimes you need more artificial, other times more natural stuff. Happy puremixing! -Alberto
2015 Feb 25
great. I know that delays are "cleaner" than reverbs, but they do not create the same spaces that we sometimes need. The question is... when talking about just pushing back a track in the mix, whats better? short reverb (bedroom/office) or haas? I feel that the delay causes a lil more comb filtering.
Sheldon Cooper
2015 Feb 25
2015 Feb 24
great video FAB!