thread: Mastering...
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Old 12th April 2007
hello everyone,

(from one of my earlier posts)
not a big fan of mix bus compression. in the early part of my career i tried for a little while to incorporate that into my style. a lot of engineers were using this technique but i quickly realized that i had better control of my levels and headroom without it. i use individual compression on most of the prominent tracks in the song and i do a lot of riding. So the buss compression would not allow me to create the dynamics i was doing with the rides. Also (in my situation) having all this gear, it seemed silly to me to go through let's say $150,000 worth of outboard (for one mix), then in the end, go through a $5000 limiter like the 33609 for example.

i don't know how engineers mix with buss compression through the entire mix session. i found it was like "chasing my tail". eg: i'd be trying to build up to a loud finale and the compressor would just suck it up. it's just doesn't work for the way i mix.

okay the ever present EXCEPTION:
so i've spoken about everyone making things louderererer in mastering. the past 2 years or so i have been using buss compression on some hip hop stuff. i'm aware that i do have to compete to a certain point. so, i'll use the SSL 9K compressor or the tube tech SMC 2B multiband compressor which works really well. i still don't like the way it handles the dynamics in my mixes, but i'll sacrifice some dynamics to get the level up just a bit more than i could have without it. (that's hip hop!) but i don't put it on the buss until i'm close to the end of the mix. i'm aware that it's not going to be as loud as everyone else's and luckily most of my clients are with me on this. i'm aware of it but i forget about it when i'm in the studio otherwise it'll drive me mad! so other than what i just described, my mixing levels have not changed since i started...heh

jules: most of my clients don't mind the volume on their pre-mastered copies...thank god. but the few times i've had to do it, i let my assistant handle it and i'll look the other way...heh

didier: i'll be back to TRY and remember the mastering for voodoo. that was a long time ago.

all the best