Reason is an incredibly powerful DAW with some outstanding instruments but as is often the case, to achieve the sounds you want, layering instruments and effects is essential. Using the 'Combinator' device, creating these layered super instruments in Reason couldn't be easier.
If you have created a great instrument patch and it is being processed by a number of effects, things can get pretty messy. Before you know it your rack is consumed by huge numbers of devices, just for a couple of parts.
So, let's start by combining some of these devices. Select them all, ensuring they are highlighted. Now right-click and choose 'Combine'. These devices will now be instantly thrown into a new Combinator device.
As your Combinator is essentially a new instrument, it can be played using one MIDI channel. This means you can add more instruments to the device and they will be played instantly. This is the ideal way to audition new patches alongside your original devices.
Of course you will need some kind of mixer inserted into your Combinator to accommodate the extra device but this is a really straight forward process. Just create your mixer and then route your previous (and new) devices to its inputs. The output of the new mixer can then go to the Combinators inputs.
Remember you can also add more effects to your new super instrument, so get stuck in and see what you can create.
With your Combinator up and running you can take things a little further. The individual parameters from the devices within the Combinator can actually be edited using the macro controls on the front of the device. By using the macro programmer you can actually control multiple parameters with one knob.
This is great for adjusting key controls and making sweeping, dramatic changes with one knob or button. If you are feeling especially artistic you can even change the picture displayed on the front of the Combinator as well!
Check out these Propellerhead Reason tutorials to learn more!