PreSonus Blog

How to Obtain the Perfect Fadeout

For most song fadeouts, I prefer an S-shaped fade.

It’s also great with audio-for-video productions because I usually use an S-fade for the video, so matching that with an equivalent audio fade works well. Although the Project Page allows only logarithmic or exponential fades for the clips that represent mixed songs, there’s nonetheless an easy way to add S-shaped fades to the Project Page’s songs.

This technique involves adding an S-fade during the final stages of mixing in the Song Page, and then updating the mastering file so that the Project Page version incorporates the fade.

  1. Add an Automation track.
  2. Assign it to the Main Volume (Fig. 1). If there’s already automation for the Main volume, no problem; you can still add the S-fade, as described next.


Figure 1: Create an automation track, and assign it to the Console’s Main Volume parameter.

  1. Add nodes on the automation envelope where you want the fade to start and where you want it to end, as well as a node exactly in the middle of those two nodes (Fig. 2).

Figure 2: Adds nodes at the fade’s intended start, middle, and end.

  1. Drag the end node all the way to the minimum level, which is the end of the fadeout.
  2. Drag the middle node to halfway between the start and end node levels.
  3. Drag the line between the start and middle nodes upward, to create a logarithmic fade.
  4. Drag the line between the middle and end nodes downward, to create an exponential fade down to the fadeout’s minimum level (Fig. 3).


Figure 3: How to drag the nodes, and adjust their curves, for an S-shape fade. 

And there you have it—an S-shaped fadeout. What’s more, unlike programs with a fixed S-shape fade, you can alter the shape for the first and second curves. For example, maybe you want a fairly quick fade out at first but then extend the final fade.

After creating the fade, now all you need to do is update your mastering file, and the song in the Project Page will incorporate your perfect, S-shaped fade.

Before signing off this week, I wanted to mention there’s a new Studio One eBook out—How to Record and Mix Great Guitar Sounds in Studio One. It’s 274 pages and covers everything from how strings and pickups affect tone to getting the most out of the latest Ampire version (and a whole lot more). You can preview the table of contents here.

  • The official place for Studio One feature requests is over here:

    If this has already been requested by somebody else, find it and upvote it.
    By posting your request there you can be sure the Studio One developers will see it!

  • Tig

    One more vote for really wanting project page automation. I rarely use the project page and that is by far the main reason. The way I like to master my tracks often utilizes automation, and I just end up doing all the mastering on the song page, or even making a new song for it. I like a lot of the project page features though and it completely baffles me why they wouldn’t add that feature.

  • My Pet

    Late to class here but… this is very cool, cuz it’s what I’ve been wanting to do…Wish I’d thought of it last year! LoL!

  • Well, you can still do that by exporting the limited file, bringing it into the Song page, adding the fade, and exporting with the fade. However, I think you’ll find that with reasonable amounts of limiting, like 6 dB, whether you limit and then fade, or fade and then limit, doesn’t make that much of an audible difference once the audio goes under the limiter’s threshold. If you do hear a difference, you can compensate by starting the fade sooner. I too would like to see Project page automation, but this approach allows having an S-fade until that happens.

  • Magnus

    I miss project page automation. Have been waiting for it since Studio One 2. And for this example… I really like my fade to be after the final limiter.

  • Thanks for the props! I’ll keep doing them for as long as PreSonus wants them 🙂

  • Mark Bolden

    I found this very helpful! Thanks! Looking forward to more tips!!

  • Craig Anderton

    That would be ideal, but it’s currently not possible. Realistically, though, the majority of the fadeout should be well below the compression/limiting threshold. If I’m using limiting or maximizing in the mastering page, then it’s going to be affecting only the upper 4-6 dB or so anyway, so most of the fade is untouched by any limiting.

  • RyanM

    We need a way to do this in the Project page, because it’s better if the fade happens after the mastering compression/limiting.