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Okay, so Compression is really cool Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 24th August 2007
  #1
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soupking's Avatar
 

Okay, so Compression is really cool

Okay, I just broke my cherry on this whole compression thing.

About 6 months ago when I still had some kind of agenda. I was on this old school kick and I picked up a Ba-25a for just over $1000. I get eyeballs everytime I'd mention it. Up until now, I've just looked like a dumb-ass when asked on it's behavior cuz I haven't been able to use it.

My tech friend wired the pigtails backwards. He's awesome., it's just really old. Once he had time, he looked at the transformers and put 2 and 2 together. 5 minutes later I'm compressing signal

Now I'm really stoked that my mixer doesn't sound so crazy. I can see how this stuff is addictive, especially on vocal range. You don't have to worry about so much crap. It's great for RCA ribbons too cuz the sucker's an amplifier.

It's cool how you can here it push. It kind of reminds me of that Rolling Stones album cover where they're pushed up against glass.

Funny, I don't yet see why I would ever need another one. This one is great. I makes the signal keep from bleeding. I know I'm just being a naive jerk.

I'm stoked. I want to use it everywhere!!! Yarrr! (There needs to be a pirate smiley face)

Anyway for now, works for me. heh

Hooray for compression!
Old 24th August 2007
  #2
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lowfreq33's Avatar
 

Welcome to the fold.
Old 24th August 2007
  #3
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Rick Sutton's Avatar
 

yeah, I know what you mean. My old Gates Sta Levels make me smile when I use them. There really is something special about tubes and big old transformers that I really like!
Old 24th August 2007
  #4
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soupking's Avatar
 

Yeah, even though I haven't used many compressors, I can see why people talk so much about how they behave.

I don't feel like I'd need another right away, but I'd feel kind of awkward using a cheap one for some reason.

I feel like kind of a poser at this stage, but I've learned tons in the past two months. Llke stacking EQs, layering, etc. Now I'm getting more into depth and dynamics.

Old 24th August 2007
  #5
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Unclenny's Avatar
Compression is like a drug....for a while the more I used, the more I wanted. Then I found myself doing odd things with it....like sneaking it onto tracks when I thought nobody was looking and hiding my compressors in the garage.

Of course it couldn't go on forever.....I finally got help (right here on GS).

I'm pretty clean now........only compress on the weekends.
Old 24th August 2007
  #6
Gear Nut
 

Soupking, i'm only responding right now because i'm jealous and wishing i was having your compressor revelation right now. i've been trying to track vocals for one song for the last couple of weeks and i keep disappointing myself. One major issue is that the vox part is so dynamic. So yesterday i started over tracking with compression. i'm still unsatisfied. But reading your post is giving me hope for when i try again today.

So i'm glad for you and your magical compression experience. i feel like you're smoking a post coital cigarette and i'm still trying to figure out how to unhook the damn brassiere.
Old 24th August 2007
  #7
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jbuehler's Avatar
 

Just remember there are LOTS of different compressors with different qualities and sounds.

What you have now is just one flavor.

Just like preamps............It doesn't end there.......

Good luck!
Old 24th August 2007
  #8
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FossilTooth's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sneezebomb View Post
Soupking, i'm only responding right now because i'm jealous and wishing i was having your compressor revelation right now. i've been trying to track vocals for one song for the last couple of weeks and i keep disappointing myself. One major issue is that the vox part is so dynamic. So yesterday i started over tracking with compression. i'm still unsatisfied. But reading your post is giving me hope for when i try again today.

So i'm glad for you and your magical compression experience. i feel like you're smoking a post coital cigarette and i'm still trying to figure out how to unhook the damn brassiere.
Have no fear. There's a couple things to remember:

The books, magazines and well-meaning posters will say "Only use small to moderate amounts of compression" blah, blah, blah.

For many genres of music, sometimes you want that GR meter nearly pegging. Sometimes you want it pegging in parallel. True, there are times when it's a good idea to follow the 'rules'. But, if you are looking for a contemporary sounding pop/rock/metal/punk/rap/rnb production (not everybody is) the rule about using minimal compression is best left to someone else.

If you're compressing just a couple of db while tracking, and a dynamic vocal still sounds.... "dynamic". well, no surprise there. I generally try to be a good boy and avoid compressing more than about 3 or 4 db during the loudest peaks while tracking vocals, but rules, schmools.

There are times when I've been tracking and wondered why the vocal sounded so good all of a sudden... only to realize that we're hitting 7 or 8db of reduction on average. It's no reason to throw away a killer take, if the sound of that particular compressor on that particular voice is stylistically appropriate.

There's also a chance you're not doing anything wrong, and the singer just sucks. These types usually take even more compression. The good ones? They bring their own mojo, and often don't need much help from your toys. If you've got a good, dynamic singer on your hand, then the dynamics are inherently a good thing, and I wouldn't worry about them.
Old 24th August 2007
  #9
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soupking's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sneezebomb View Post
Soupking, i'm only responding right now because i'm jealous and wishing i was having your compressor revelation right now. i've been trying to track vocals for one song for the last couple of weeks and i keep disappointing myself. One major issue is that the vox part is so dynamic. So yesterday i started over tracking with compression. i'm still unsatisfied. But reading your post is giving me hope for when i try again today.

So i'm glad for you and your magical compression experience. i feel like you're smoking a post coital cigarette and i'm still trying to figure out how to unhook the damn brassiere.
Yeah, one of the main reasons I got a vintage comp was that it was more basic. Maybe slower, but basic. I hear all sorts of great things about the Tube Tech, but I have no idea how to use something like that.

My experience was more relief than magic. It put a smile on my face on how many sources I could use it in order to bring up levels and balance vocals a bit so they're not so drive-by (partially the singer's fault). Again, it's slow so I can 't blast things too hard. But I look at it and get jazzed.
Old 24th August 2007
  #10
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stevep's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by soupking View Post

It's great for RCA ribbons too cuz the sucker's an amplifier.
Which RCA Ribbon mic do you have ? those are special



Old 24th August 2007
  #11
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soupking's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stevep View Post
Which RCA Ribbon mic do you have ? those are special




I've got a BK-5 and a 74b Junior. I use the BK-5 like I would an sm57, but the 74b Junior didn't do much for me until I used it as a drum over head because it's had the whole two-sided response thing going for it. It makes toms sound really round and rich, especially on tape.
Old 24th August 2007
  #12
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bexarametric's Avatar
 

Is it wrong that every time I read your posts they translate in the voice of Chunk? It's just funny to imagine Chunk talking about Pultecs and compression.
Old 26th August 2007
  #13
Gear Nut
 
GungaDin's Avatar
 

I got my first real compressor (Distressor) about a year ago and I'm understanding more and more just what they do. It comes slowly to me, though.

Much more recently a friend lent me an Electro Harmonix NY-2A for my first real experience with a tube compressor. LOVE. IT. Simple to use and really makes me want to own some flavor of stereo tube compression. Its also helping me realize where the Distressors shine and where they don't.

It would be great to hear some suggestions for tube compressors (stereo or mono) in the under $2k range.

Last edited by GungaDin; 26th August 2007 at 02:31 AM.. Reason: addition
Old 26th August 2007
  #14
...

compression is king.....no offense to soup.....

i'm a SERIOUS addict....and have been for years and years and years and years.


of course, you need the right room, mic, pre, talent, performance, song, etc.

but, HEY, once you got all THAT sh&t...........



..
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