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How to compress? Dynamics Plugins
Old 22nd September 2017
  #121
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigma View Post
think of a compressor as a "wave shaper" then think of the types of waves in an ocean some are big rounded and rolling with no white caps...equate that to a bass...some are fast short and choppy..think snare kicks etc ...

now consider atack settings... is the idea to push a kick beater into the shell resonance or to bring the beater out? your answer determines where you set the attack ..if you want more beater set the attack in the 3-5 ms range to let the beater pass ...if it's to get more shell put in a fast attack like a peaking limiter would do..then realize you did 2 things you changed the wavee shape as well as EQ'd THE TRACK..there is no 1.5 -5 k in a kick shell resonance but there is 1.5-5k in the beater hit so essentially you are EQ'g too

then there is compression you do on mixes... low ratio ..most times fast attack and long release so you don't hear pumping

always decide what you want the outcome to be then pick the compressor and setting to actualize it..

know the shape of the wave you want to affect and how you want to change it

also many compressors can't catch rounded bass notes because they look like sine waves and have little or no transient ...so you need to look at compressors who overcome that issue by their design
I like this. I'd offer a visualization, the attack time's slope -response rate of reduction- overlaid with a track's wave shape. In relative terms, 'fast (enough') for a slow moving source would look slow to something more percussive.
Old 25th September 2017
  #122
HSi
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These 3 images should help people that haven't seen them or have some confusion.





I have to admit for many years I thought the attack and release were quite different to how they actually are. This is just a simple diagram too, doesn't take into account exact models which may have extra stages or different curves etc etc.
Old 25th September 2017
  #123
Gear Nut
 

The second part of that diagram is wrong right? in the way it claims there is a "treated" and "untreated" part of the signal. The threshold is more of a trigger, that will then subsequently treat the whole signal, even what is below the threshold?
Old 25th September 2017
  #124
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Karloff70's Avatar
 

I'll have to repeat the other day's notion, really great to see you back here Mike, dropping reality chunks like that. Stick around!
Old 25th September 2017
  #125
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Sigma's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne View Post
I like this. I'd offer a visualization, the attack time's slope -response rate of reduction- overlaid with a track's wave shape. In relative terms, 'fast (enough') for a slow moving source would look slow to something more percussive.
I do that in my 1 on 1 classes ..you can see the waveform changes as well as hear
Old 25th September 2017
  #126
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamEZmusic View Post
The second part of that diagram is wrong right? in the way it claims there is a "treated" and "untreated" part of the signal. The threshold is more of a trigger, that will then subsequently treat the whole signal, even what is below the threshold?
I think you're "reading" the diagram "wrong", although I can see why people would read it that way.

A better way of thinking about it is when the signal is below the threshold it is treated, and the graph shows you when that happens. When the text says a "portion of the signal is treated" the way I understand it it refers to the entire signal, from beginning to end (time) in the graph.
Old 30th October 2017
  #127
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primeone's Avatar
 

Really informative!
Old 29th November 2017
  #128
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zukan's Avatar
 

Have a look at a series of video tutorials I created for a number of channels. This one deals with compression.
Basic Compression - Science and Application - Samplecraze

Hope these videos help guys.
Old 20th January 2018
  #129
Here is my latest article on how to EQ distorted guitars
How to EQ Distorted Electric Guitar - Tips and Tricks
Hopefully you guys find it helpful
Old 9th March 2018
  #131
lot of good info here. i will keep my mouth shut. except for stating that i will keep my mouth shut.
Old 11th June 2018
  #132
Deleted 7c654d4
Guest
A good trick I used on compressing vocals when learning compression was to use an 1176 compressor, pick a vocal preset and set the input and output to just knock off 2-3 dB
Works a charm, same goes for La 2A compressor
Old 13th July 2018
  #133
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mixandmastering View Post
I have a very useful document on compression and when to use it. A lot of people learn how to use a compressor but they are unsure on when they actually need to use it.

Reply with your email address and I will get it sent to you.

James
Mix and Mastering
[email protected]
Old 31st July 2018
  #134
Gear Nut
 

Great thread, thank you.

I can see some compressors are advertised as Bus compressors .. .what is the difference between these and other compressors?



Old 1st August 2018
  #135
I'll let more experienced and knowledgeable people correct me (ILMEAKPCM), but by "bus" compressor people mean compressors applied to groups of tracks instead of applied to a single track.
Old 8th August 2018
  #136
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Compression Video

Here’s a nice tutorial about compression on vocals.

YouTube
Old 16th October 2018
  #137
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Applying compressor on vocals is such a tough process. I use presets on my Logic Pro X DAW but I need to set up my own settings. Especially for vocals.
Old 3rd November 2018
  #138
I produced this a few years ago which I’m told is quite helpful
YouTube
Old 4th December 2018
  #139
Here for the gear
A lot of info here. If I may drop my 2 cents. When I was teaching Compression, I designed a test tone with the shape of a snare (sharp attack, body and decay). You may use a snare, but the test tone I found was more effective for ear training. Dialing in a compressor is cyclical and really takes hands on practice more than reading theory. Each compressor and compressor model is different. Most model analog compression which is rarely linear or to the numbers. I like to start everyone with a VCA
like a DBX or SSL clone. These tend to be mostly linear and somewhat close to the numbers.
Set to 4:1 ratio, Attack at 20ms, release short, set threshold until you are seeing 6-10db of reduction (this is ear training). Adjust the attack time for more or less punch. Get a feel for how the compressor can actually reshape the sound.
If you can record the sound while compressing, you can watch the shape of the waveform in real time.
Once you have a feel for the attack, move on to the release. Try a really short release and compressing hard. On fast compressors this can generate distortion on low frequencies. Then extend the release until the Gain reduction is fully recovered just before the next hit.
Rinse and repeat until you have a good feel. Then try different compression models like FET and Opto and listen for the differences.

Compression can be used to stabilize a sound (front to back in a mix), but it is often used to sculpt the sound for more or less punch, more or less body, more or less audible decay.
Old 14th December 2018
  #140
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Davster's Avatar
 

Not to bring this thread back from the dead or anything but...

I did a super simple explanation on what compression is for newbies a while back:

Just ignore the fact it says 'Subcribe' at the end
Old 17th January 2019
  #141
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matt thomas View Post
The point is to give inexperienced people pointers on how to go about point 1. This is the newbies subforum.

matt
The really bad thing about threads like this is all the really bad information and advice that gets thrown ou there....and there is a lot of it here. The problem is that many of the people who this is supposed to help don’t know enough to separate the good info from the bad, and caan actually be setback for believing some of the not so good advice being thrown around.

When you start a thread like this you need a knowledgeable person to monitor, guide and correct or things will just go sideways. Your numbers analogy is a perfect example, posting misinformation does not help...it only confuses and set people back, unfortunately the damage is already done.

People don’t want dumbed-down information, they want the facts explained correctly and they can figure out how to make things work for them over time and with experience...just saying.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #142
Gear Maniac
 

I'm curious if even the cheapest EQ or Compressor from brands like monoprice, ART, DBX, BBE, etc. could work for its intended use?

I'm surprised to find out that DBX were the ones who invented the compressor, according to their claim.

Is a compressor a compressor and can be used for live shows, tracking, mixing, mastering or is one type only suggested for specific usage? Been wondering about the DBX 266xs compressor/limiter/gate.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #143
Gear Maniac
 

if that's correct, what would compressor applied to a single track then be called?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinnie2k View Post
I'll let more experienced and knowledgeable people correct me (ILMEAKPCM), but by "bus" compressor people mean compressors applied to groups of tracks instead of applied to a single track.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #144
Quote:
Originally Posted by slutbox View Post
if that's correct, what would compressor applied to a single track then be called?
A compressor.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #145
Quote:
Originally Posted by connorn View Post
By compressing you make the loud parts softer, if you then boost the total sound you have increased the soft parts relative to the loud parts of your audio signal. The signal is louder this way. Hope this makes sense and helps!
That’s how I think about compression as well.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #146
Gear Head
 
DIGIT's Avatar
 

there has to be a reason to compress. This can be either "technical" (i.e. keeping a sound in check so to speak), creative (tempo based compression) or both.

With that in mind the "how to" part is then relative to each intended purpose and it cannot just be explained in one post. But you can start by experimenting on different sounds, one track at a time. Start with a percussive sound, like a snare (should be a real snare), kik, etc.. acoustic and electric guitar, etc.. see how each parameter affects the sound what each know does. There is NO one-rule, no matter what anyone says. about compression.
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