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Mix Bus Comp: VCA, Diode Bridge, Vari-Mu?
Old 19th April 2019
  #1
Lives for gear
 

Mix Bus Comp: VCA, Diode Bridge, Vari-Mu?

Which do you prefer on your mixbus? Or in which combination or order, and why? Or do you change it up by genre, artist, etc?
Old 19th April 2019
  #2
Lives for gear
I don’t have a diode bridge comp.
I don’t automatically use any or all, but by position:
I have the Vari-Mu first. Sometimes for a little reduction, sometimes just for its sound, and sometimes it doesn’t suit the material.
Next I have two Revive-modded Chameleon VCA. One mod includes Cine-Mag transformers, one does not. I can use either or both. They have very similar compression characteristics but each has a somewhat different sound.
Last I have a Revive-modded ART VLA optocomp with Carnhill trannies. It is a peculiar beast.
I have all of these and a couple of EQs routed through a Dangerous Liaison. I can easily compare comps and chains.
The Liaison also has a parallel loop where any one of the devices can be sent the stereo signal and have the amount of return dialed to taste. I don’t often like the Vari-Mu in parallel, but the transformer Chameleon gets some use there. The king of the parallel loop is the ART. Many mixes profit from just a touch of the beast, but it’s usually too ill-mannered to use as a main comp.
Old 19th April 2019
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

The comp with the highest MSRP gets assigned to the mix bus. The one with the lowest MSRP gets inserted on the tambourine channel.
Old 19th April 2019
  #4
Neve diode bridge compression seems mighty thick and tasty.
Old 19th April 2019
  #5
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Singlecutz View Post
The comp with the highest MSRP gets assigned to the mix bus. The one with the lowest MSRP gets inserted on the tambourine channel.
The truth? We can’t handle the truth!
Old 19th April 2019
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Vari-Mu first? I thought kinda standard order for mixbus was something like an SSL vca first to get the grunt-work done, tame the most intense transients, glue everything a bit, solidify the punch, followed by a touch of vari-mu for gentle polishing after that. why put the more gentle comp first?
Old 20th April 2019
  #7
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by fromthepuggle View Post
Vari-Mu first? I thought kinda standard order for mixbus was something like an SSL vca first to get the grunt-work done, tame the most intense transients, glue everything a bit, solidify the punch, followed by a touch of vari-mu for gentle polishing after that. why put the more gentle comp first?
There is a standard order for the mix buss?
I didn’t get that email, so I spent a lot of time with the Liaison, trying various orders on a spectrum of material.
So the answer to why the Vari-Mu first (usually) is that I like it there. I don’t compress with it first, I just pop it in and out and see if I like the sound of it on the mix. Your “gentle polish” description is what I hear when it fits the track. It softens the transients too much on tracks where I don’t like it. The Vari-mu as a compressor just adds a little civility to mixes. I agree that it is seldom brilliant doing any heavy lifting.
I’m not a fan of heavy mix compression in general, so if some element seems to cause a lot of compression, I will see if that element needs individual compression.
I’m a terrible role model, and don’t advocate that anyone should necessarily follow my example.
Put the Vari-Mu wherever it works for you. Put it on EBay if it doesn’t.
Old 20th April 2019
  #8
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by tridelica View Post
Neve diode bridge compression seems mighty thick and tasty.
Stop eating the compressors! What is wrong with you people!
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