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Understanding the release
Old 9th September 2007
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Understanding the release

Im trying to REALLY learn to understand the release function,and not just tweak til it sounds good.
And ive been thinking about toms, cause they tend to be harder to tweak compared to the rest of the drums, Cause of the sustain/tail, What would you consider to be a SLOW Release for toms, is it just as simple as releasetime=Sustain?
Is the point that the comp should stop reducing BEFORE the next hit,
does a reeeally long release mean that its still compressing even though the signal has gone below the threshold? Im just trying to get the math and translate it to working with toms you know.
Old 10th September 2007
Lives for gear

Sometimes it helps to break the whole process down -the desired change vs. the cause and effect, so you can see where you are going first.
Start by considering the waveform you're working with; the transient at the head, the decay, spread out in time.
How do you want to change this shape?
Increasing relative attack over body? Slow attack to let the peak through, clamp down after; release to fit the return time.
Control peaks and or increase sustain? Faster attack, again, release to fit.
I would recommend spending some time getting used to the sounds (say with a moderate release of 100ms or so) of "very fast" vs. slower and slower attack. That is where (generally) most of the trigger will be. Then do similar runs with varying release.
The process will still be by ear, job and/or tempo or whatever but the process and the numbers for the comps you're getting familiar with will get to be second nature.
Typically (but depending a little on what you're doing at the front end) you'd expect the gain back to normal befor the next hit but even that's tricky. What if he goes from quarter notes to a roll?
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