FLAIR enriches sounds by adding spatial movement and giving them an ensemble-like quality. This section includes a general note about flanger effects and an overview of the FLAIR plug-in.

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In this chapter you can learn about FLAIR. It includes a general note about flanger effects and an overview of the FLAIR plug-in.

About Flanger Effects

Flangers are used to enrich sounds by adding distinct harmonic effects that can completely transform a sound. They are based on comb filters, with built-in modulation of the comb filter frequency. A comb filter consists of an extremely short delay with feedback that produces harmonically related peaks and notches in the frequency spectrum. This way a flanger adds dramatic filtering effects and resonances to the sound. The results range from metallic textures to the warped sound of a starting jet engine.

As one of the most commonly used guitar and studio effects, various implementations of the flanger have found their way into studio rack processors and guitar pedals. FLAIR is a new take on the concept with additional features that have been carefully chosen to allow for more sophisticated and extreme sounds than possible with common flangers, while staying true to the ease of use and clarity associated with these devices.

Overview of FLAIR

FLAIR features three flanger modes that offer different approaches to a range of effects from flanging to harmonization. The effect is produced by up to four comb filters, called Voices. Further expanding on the original concept of a flanger, the flanger voices have a harmonic relationship based on a wide selection of preset chords (Chord parameter). In both Standard and Thru Zero mode, the flanger voices are added to form a chord, while in Scan mode, one flanger voice is blended into the next, generating a sequence similar to an arpeggiator on a keyboard. Especially with high feedback settings, this can lead to unusual results that are more akin to the sounds of a tuned resonator than a flanger.

  1. Header: Provides global functions related to preset management and plug-in behavior. For more information, refer to Header and Presets.

  2. Width: Creates a wide and lively stereo image by adding a phase offset to the modulation between the left and right stereo channels. Additionally, a special type of cross-feedback is introduced, further animating the stereo image as Feedback is increased.

  3. LFO Sync: Synchronizes the modulation to the host tempo and replaces the Rate knob with the LFO Sync controls.

  4. Rate: Adjusts the frequency of the modulation. When LFO Sync is activated, modulation is synchronized to the host and the Rate control is replaced by the LFO Sync controls:


    The Numerator (a) and Denominator (b) set the speed of modulation in musical notes relative to the host tempo. The Numerator sets the number of notes, while the Denominator sets the note value. The Sync Mode (c) sets the time value, or subdivision, for the chosen note value. For example, 1|4 in Sync Mode Straight means that the modulation repeats its cycle after one quarter note, and 3|2 in Sync Mode Triplet means that the modulation repeats its cycle after three half note triplets.

  5. Amount: Adjusts the amount of modulation, adding movement to the effect.

  6. Voices: When Mode is set to Standard or Thru Zero, Voices fades from one to four flanger voices. The additional flanger voices are added in harmonic intervals, forming a chord as set with Chord. When Mode is set to Scan, Voices scans through the four flanger voices one after the other by blending between the first and the second flanger voice, then the second and the third flanger voice, and so on.

  7. Chord: Sets a chord that defines the harmonic relationship between the four Voices .

  8. Detune: Alters the pitch of each individual flanger voice in a range of approximately +/- 60 cent. This creates a rich and lively sound similar to the effect of detuning oscillators on a synthesizer. Detune is especially useful when Chord is set to Unison.

  9. Damping: Attenuates the high frequency content of the feedback signals from the outputs of the flanger voices to their inputs, allowing for soft sounds even at high Feedback settings.

  10. Pitch: Adjusts the fundamental frequency of the first flanger voice in semitones, effectively shifting the peaks and notches of all flanger voices in the frequency spectrum.

  11. Feedback: Adjusts the level of the feedback signals from the outputs of the flanger voices to their inputs, creating a more resonant and metallic sound.

  12. Mix: Blends between the dry signal and the wet signal by means of an equal-power crossfade.

  13. Invert: Swaps the position of the peaks and notches in the frequency spectrum by inverting the effect signal. When activated, the perceived pitch of the flanger voices is one octave lower. In Thru Zero mode, activating Invert creates strong signal cancellations that can result in interesting rhythmical effects.

  14. Mode: Switches between three different flanger modes.

    • Standard: In this mode, each flanger voice behaves like a basic flanger effect, creating harmonically related peaks and notches in the frequency spectrum.

    • Thru Zero: In this mode, each flanger voice is duplicated. The duplicated instances of the flanger voices are excluded from the modulation and thus rest at their respective base pitch. When modulation is introduced by increasing Amount, the flanger voices shift against the duplicated instances in time. This creates the strong thru zero flanging effect with its characteristic signal cancellation, similar to the flanging effect originally created with two tape machines. The Offset slider below the Mode menu allows you to shift the duplicated instances of the flanger voices in the frequency spectrum. This changes their position relative to the center of modulation, which results in rhythmical variations of the thru zero flanging effect. Offset also allows you to reduce the amount of signal cancellation when there is no modulation (Amount set to 0%).

    • Scan: In this mode, instead of adding the flanger voices to form a chord, Voices scans through them one after the other. This is similar to how an arpeggiator on a keyboard plays the notes contained in a chord as a sequence. The Scan Mode selector below the Mode menu allows you to choose from three different waveforms for the modulation: Triangle, Sawtooth Up, and Sawtooth Down.

  15. Display: Shows the number of Voices and their Pitch , including the Amount and Rate of the modulation.