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DBX 160 XT "101" anyone?
Old 22nd May 2006
  #1
Registered User
 

DBX 160 XT "101" anyone?

I have just recieved my DBX 160XT from the repair shop, I bought it from eBay and it never worked (long story) I'm unpacking it at the moment is anybody willing to give me good settings for rap vocals? (guideline settings etc) I am using it at home today straight into an Mbox 1 just to test it.

Thanks
Old 22nd May 2006
  #2
Registered User
 

I know we are all busy but can someone just give me the basics on this machine, for example over easy mode for rap vocals or not? Threshold and Output settings?

Just need a rough guide!

Thanks in advance
Old 22nd May 2006
  #3
Gear Head
 
VelvetGoatmine's Avatar
 

dbx compressor guide. works for all of 'em

Seeing as how the boxes are dead simple:

Pass selected audio through them.

Play with knobs until you like how it sounds or it sounds interesting.

Don't distort stuff unless it sounds interesting.

If your question relates more to how compressors function and how to learn to use them in general, then you need to get some decent books or have an experienced friend show you the ropes and say "Hear that when I do this?"

Seriously.


P.S. I love it when people become impatient after having only waited 2 hours for someone to reply to their plea.
Old 22nd May 2006
  #4
Registered User
 

P.S. I love it when people become impatient after having only waited 2 hours for someone to reply to their plea.[/QUOTE]


New toy in the post! it's like christmas!

What I was looking for is someone who uses the 160 XT for rap vocals to give me a basic run through. . . anyway not to worry I get to work!
Old 22nd May 2006
  #5
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

There's not a lot of knobs to screw it up with... Just don't over compress and have fun!
Old 22nd May 2006
  #6
Lives for gear
 
electric's Avatar
 

deedee-
what velvet said is pretty on the money. just play with it a bit. since the attack and release are fixed on the 160x/xt there is not much to it. the threshold sets the level where you want the compressor to "turn-on". the ratio dial sets how much dynamics you want to squeeze out. then you have the make up gain to bring the volume up to the desired level. (when tracking vocals use want to hit your ad converter pretty hot without going over). also there is an "overeasy" button which smoothes out how fast the compression kicks in around the threshold. if you want smoother compression (less obvious) than use this. if you want a more aggressive sound turn overeasy off. thats about it.

i suggest having someone assist you buy spitting some lyrics through your signal chain while you make adjustments on the threshold/ratio dials and also checking with and without overeasy mode. you'll start understanding how the unit works.

i love the 160xt on rap vocals. they rock. play with the unit at extreme ratios so you can hear it working then back off till it sounds good. pretty soon you are going to want the holy grail 160vu. now go and make good music! best of luck.

peace,
electric
Old 22nd May 2006
  #7
Gear Head
 

tony

whats wrong with overcompressing? i mean, listen to early Prince stuff. the drums, esp. the kicks are so heavily compressed and it has a dope sound.

wouldnt you agree?

i mean, isnt over compression sometimes amount some really cool sounding tracks????

dilla and hi tek also, those drums are crazy compressed
Old 22nd May 2006
  #8
Registered User
 

The sample was done with settings:

Threshold -25dBm
5.1 Compression
Output Gain -3dB

"Over Easy" Mode was not used

I didnt check whether the input output and gain reduction led's are working but I will check this tomorrow.
Old 22nd May 2006
  #9
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DeeDee
The sample was done with settings:

Threshold -25dBm
5.1 Compression
Output Gain -3dB

"Over Easy" Mode was not used

I didnt check whether the input output and gain reduction led's are working but I will check this tomorrow.
how many dbs or reduction was on that?? i'd try ti get more smack out of that thing but thats just me
Old 22nd May 2006
  #10
Moderator
 
TonyBelmont's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy Mas
whats wrong with overcompressing? i mean, listen to early Prince stuff. the drums, esp. the kicks are so heavily compressed and it has a dope sound.

wouldnt you agree?

i mean, isnt over compression sometimes amount some really cool sounding tracks????

dilla and hi tek also, those drums are crazy compressed
It can be nice as an effect.... but it's his first experience with the piece. I wouldn't recommend it, as that is the most common mistake beginners make with compression.
Old 22nd May 2006
  #11
Registered User
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzy655
how many dbs or reduction was on that?? i'd try ti get more smack out of that thing but thats just me

I didnt check because I did the vocal, what did you mean by more smack?
I took a listen to "Guns" its nice! what vocal chain do you use?
Old 22nd May 2006
  #12
Lives for gear
 
e-cue's Avatar
 

Everytime I've used this on vocals, I've had it in overeasy mode. I seem to always have access to better tools so I haven't used it on vocals in a while but my newbie advise FWIW, I'd start with the threshold around 2 o clock (0) and slowly go counterclockwise, then start with the ratio around 9 o clock (2:1) and slowly go up clockwise to noon (4 1/2:1) and fish around till you see -5 to -8 db of reduction. Then close your eyes and sweep around till it sound "good" to you (not louder), then adjust the makeup gain to compensate for the change in level.

If it sounds like the rapper is rapping on an airplane, you should probably back off a little.
Old 22nd May 2006
  #13
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DeeDee
I didnt check because I did the vocal, what did you mean by more smack?
I took a listen to "Guns" its nice! what vocal chain do you use?

Dee Dee
thanks man. i think we recorded that one with the 4060 through an ISA428 pre into an RME ADI8. I'm actually pretty unhappy with the whole sound of that track, so we're remixing it. The vocals sound to choked up to me, the compressor is sucking too much. That mix was a while back, and i've learned a lot since then.

by "smack" i meant having the compressor grab the vocals a little more. not overly like that guns track, but i thought it could use a little more leveling.
listen to "Watch Me" off of jay-z's blueprint. That's the sound i'm talking about. it's pretty apparent in that track, but I like the way it sounds. not too much, not too little

listen to ecue and tony. i do thumbsup
Old 22nd May 2006
  #14
Registered User
 

Thanks a lot for all your help, I appreciate your time. I will have another go tomorrow!
Old 22nd May 2006
  #15
Registered User
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by e-cue
Then close your eyes and sweep around till it sound "good" to you (not louder), then adjust the makeup gain to compensate for the change in level.

e-que could you explain this a different way for me please? as this is where you lost me!

Thanks again
Old 22nd May 2006
  #16
Lives for gear
 
e-cue's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DeeDee
e-que could you explain this a different way for me please? as this is where you lost me!

Thanks again

Dee Dee
Twist the knobs until it sounds like the rapper has an unlimited breath supply, and uses it to evenly spit their words. I usually try to think it it as bringing the softer words up, not squashing the louder vocals down. What I meant when I said "louder" is that, a lot of times people try a unit or plug in and think it sounds better because the output is louder (and louder is better right?)

If you aren't messing with the makeup gain at this point in the step by step tweek I mentioned, it shouldn't be an issue- just make sure that the volume isn't influencing your opinion of the sound.

Is that what you are looking for?
Old 22nd May 2006
  #17
Registered User
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by e-cue
Twist the knobs until it sounds like the rapper has an unlimited breath supply, and uses it to evenly spit their words. I usually try to think it it as bringing the softer words up, not squashing the louder vocals down. What I meant when I said "louder" is that, a lot of times people try a unit or plug in and think it sounds better because the output is louder (and louder is better right?)

If you aren't messing with the makeup gain at this point in the step by step tweek I mentioned, it shouldn't be an issue- just make sure that the volume isn't influencing your opinion of the sound.

Is that what you are looking for?

I thinks so ! here goes:

After the first steps of getting the gain reduction right, twist the nobs again? (would this not loose the gain reduction we just got?) untill the softer words are brought up but being carefull not to squash the louder parts down.

Should the output gain be at 0 at this point? then adjust it to compensate reduction?

Apologies for my lack of understanding.
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