Create glitch effects with delay plugins
Once you get the principles behind the choppy buffer effect, you’ll be stitching together your own glitching processor for some creative fun Glitches came to prominence when computer music production really took off. By loading snippets of the played signal into a ‘buffer’, and then suddenly repeating this buffer with the active signal killed, you’ve created a glitch effect – a lot like an old, scratched CD skipping on playback… only by using your DAW, it’s timed alongside the existing music. The processing behind the glitch effect is actually easy to remake using a delay, since a delay is simply a buffer that stores the input sound and plays it back. By turning the feedback up to 100%, you’ll only play back the sound that’s stored, but it’s a little more complex, as you have to switch off the input signal coming into the buffer at the same time. That’s all pretty straightforward using Bitwig’s macros, though…
Grab a delay device – we’re using Bitwig Studio’s Delay-1 processor – and load it over an audio track or instrument. Whack the Mix up to 100% so you just hear the delayed signal, and then crank down the Feedback to 0%. Insert a limiter afterwards for safety.
When you suddenly raise the Feedback knob to 100%, the signal gets caught in a looping cycle, and doesn’t lose any volume. Play with the delay time and see how it changes the setup. The problem is that the input signal is constantly being fed into the delay’s buffer.
Nesting the Delay-1 into our synth’s device chain, we add in a Tool (utility) device. We can use the instrument’s macros, routed positively to the Delay-1’s Feedback and negatively to the Tool’s Amplitude, to cut the input when the delay feedback goes to 100%.