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Very first Hands on....the A-Designs NAIL !! Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 31st March 2010
  #1
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Very first Hands on....the A-Designs NAIL !!

Just got the NAIL in today, now this is NOT a video Review or any kind of A/B against the Duality etc.. I just opened the box and plugged it across the hall on the Duality so we can get an "idea" of what the comp is doing and have another 2 Buss comp as a reference.
Again I was not matching settings etc.. One thing I have to say is this compressor is Like no other I have ever used so in this video...I had no "f&%king" clue what I was doing lol i was just twisting knobs and trying it out.
I installed it in my rack a few hours ago and ran a Mix that I was working on thru it, I only compressed a dB or so but yet, it gave me snapier snare, more control vocals and a more "glued" sound without sounding 2D like the SSL. I can't wait to REALLY work with the comp this week, I will let you know and will do a videoheh

Old 31st March 2010
  #2
Very cool! Thanks for the vid.
Old 31st March 2010
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henge View Post
Very cool! Thanks for the vid.
No prob, I can't wait to go back to the studio tomorrow and play with it more, this thing got me Curious !!!heh
Old 31st March 2010
  #4
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Correct me if i´m wrong

But the HPF only work in hard compression mode? right?
Old 31st March 2010
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nisse Hult View Post
But the HPF only work in hard compression mode? right?
you mean with the hard threshold on only? that's a good question! I will check that out tomorrow and let you know
Old 31st March 2010
  #6
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First of all congrats on purchase of the Nail!!! Been using my Nail for around 6 weeks...It took me a few weeks to really get the hang of it but the pay off is amazing. I absolutely love it!!! Sonically it was like a veil was lifted off the mix. It is very versatile which is why it took a little getting used to, It's definitely not a one trick pony. I think you can be useful in all genres of music. If you want to use it in a "Traditional" sense you can set it up so you have the side chain and the hard threshold off and set the comp knob all the way up. If your more into Hip Hop, R&B or Dance you can start messing around with the sidechain filter and let all that bottom through and take the comp "wet/dry" knob and blend a bit of the the uncompressed signal together with the compressed signal or you can do a little of both and have the best of both worlds. You can smash the crap out of your mix or your drum buss and use your comp "wet/dry" knob for parallel compression. If your kind of looking for an auto release glue type of vibe I find that if I put the release around 5 or 6 gets me in that realm. When I put the release faster it sounds transparent without pumping. I think if you work with one type of genre once you dial in what you like you could set it a forget it but if you do a wide variety of stuff it great to have options and this unit definitely does. I think that after you mess around with it for awhile you can see what YOU really like. Keep us posted on some killer settings you came up with.
Old 31st March 2010
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b-magical View Post
First of all congrats on purchase of the Nail!!! Been using my Nail for around 6 weeks...It took me a few weeks to really get the hang of it but the pay off is amazing. I absolutely love it!!! Sonically it was like a veil was lifted off the mix. It is very versatile which is why it took a little getting used to, It's definitely not a one trick pony. I think you can be useful in all genres of music. If you want to use it in a "Traditional" sense you can set it up so you have the side chain and the hard threshold off and set the comp knob all the way up. If your more into Hip Hop, R&B or Dance you can start messing around with the sidechain filter and let all that bottom through and take the comp "wet/dry" knob and blend a bit of the the uncompressed signal together with the compressed signal or you can do a little of both and have the best of both worlds. You can smash the crap out of your mix or your drum buss and use your comp "wet/dry" knob for parallel compression. If your kind of looking for an auto release glue type of vibe I find that if I put the release around 5 or 6 gets me in that realm. When I put the release faster it sounds transparent without pumping. I think if you work with one type of genre once you dial in what you like you could set it a forget it but if you do a wide variety of stuff it great to have options and this unit definitely does. I think that after you mess around with it for awhile you can see what YOU really like. Keep us posted on some killer settings you came up with.
great ! thanks for the Info!!thumbsup
Old 31st March 2010
  #8
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What can i say

The Hammer and Nail in the thain is a killer combination
Old 31st March 2010
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nisse Hult View Post
The Hammer and Nail in the thain is a killer combination
Sure is !
Old 31st March 2010
  #10
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nisse Hult View Post
But the HPF only work in hard compression mode? right?
Here is a walk through of how the controls work.


Old 1st April 2010
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nisse Hult View Post
But the HPF only work in hard compression mode? right?
Ronan did a great job explaining everything in his video but just in case you didn't watch it, the answer is no. The HPF (or as I like to call it, the built-in sidechain) works no matter if you are engaging the hard threshold knob or not. It's all independent.
Old 1st April 2010
  #12
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WANT!!!!!!
Old 1st April 2010
  #13
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Tony Shepperd's Avatar
Awesome Video! thumbsup

You might have noticed this by now, but if you turn the knob, give it about 5 seconds to react. Because of the way the Nail is designed, you will get a truer sonic reaction if you give it a breath.

Also right now it seems that you've been listening to the mix after the SSL comp. If you get a chance, try the Nail on the mix from the ground up. I think you will that mixing into the Nail from the beginning will change your mix.
Old 1st April 2010
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd View Post
Awesome Video! thumbsup

You might have noticed this by now, but if you turn the knob, give it about 5 seconds to react. Because of the way the Nail is designed, you will get a truer sonic reaction if you give it a breath.

Also right now it seems that you've been listening to the mix after the SSL comp. If you get a chance, try the Nail on the mix from the ground up. I think you will that mixing into the Nail from the beginning will change your mix.
cool Yes it was just my very first time plugging it, I'm about to start some heavy mixing projects and will run everything from the start thru it
Old 1st April 2010
  #15
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warhead's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdjice View Post
One thing I have to say is this compressor is Like no other I have ever used so in this video...
Yup, the NAIL is very unique.

War
Old 1st April 2010
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcm View Post
Here is a walk through of how the controls work.


Yep, great Job ! I'm actually starting to get how the double threshold works, very cool!!
Old 1st April 2010
  #17
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while mixing with it, how much DB of GR do you guys usually get? I find it to be more transparent then compressors I'm used to (which is great for the 2buss!) and I almost always compress way more then I usually would.
Old 1st April 2010
  #18
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Tony Shepperd's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdjice View Post
while mixing with it, how much DB of GR do you guys usually get? I find it to be more transparent then compressors I'm used to (which is great for the 2buss!) and I almost always compress way more then I usually would.
For Rock... 5-7dB of Gain Reduction.
For HH/Pop 3-5dB of Gain Reduction
Old 1st April 2010
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Shepperd View Post
For Rock... 5-7dB of Gain Reduction.
For HH/Pop 3-5dB of Gain Reduction
yep that's where I'm at I usually couldnt' d more then 2 dbs on Hip Hop because it would squash the SHHH out of my low end but the way the sidechain is designed it's great because I can compress 5 dbs without sounding compressed and bringing kick and bass down, GREAT!
Old 1st April 2010
  #20
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Oh man...

this is real sickness.

I thought I was fine with Germanium, api 2500 and Shadow Hills MC... but this looks pretty cool! The double threshold function seems really interesting, and nice to have the wet/dry built in. Germanium has the wet/dry also, and I really love it, especially for tracking. I wish the SHMC had a wet/dry knob (and a side chain knob as opposed to simple switch with fixed value)...

Don't get me wrong: am not complaining, and I certainly do not NEED any more compressors... it's just that the Nail seems to have a few things in it that appear to be unique and useful enough to get a gearslut lusting over it.

That meter makes things only worse! It's a simple idea, but it's nice to be able to see the amount of compression displayed this way. Especially with the two meters set to show two aspects of the mix. (SHMC has the ability to set the two meters to show action of the two compression circuits as well, which is super cool also.)

Aaaaanyway.
I thought that writing this down will help me get over it.

But am not so sure now.

p.
Old 1st April 2010
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piotr View Post
Oh man...

this is real sickness.

I thought I was fine with Germanium, api 2500 and Shadow Hills MC... but this looks pretty cool! The double threshold function seems really interesting, and nice to have the wet/dry built in. Germanium has the wet/dry also, and I really love it, especially for tracking. I wish the SHMC had a wet/dry knob (and a side chain knob as opposed to simple switch with fixed value)...

Don't get me wrong: am not complaining, and I certainly do not NEED any more compressors... it's just that the Nail seems to have a few things in it that appear to be unique and useful enough to get a gearslut lusting over it.

That meter makes things only worse! It's a simple idea, but it's nice to be able to see the amount of compression displayed this way. Especially with the two meters set to show two aspects of the mix. (SHMC has the ability to set the two meters to show action of the two compression circuits as well, which is super cool also.)

Aaaaanyway.
I thought that writing this down will help me get over it.

But am not so sure now.

p.
the options are great an I love the Meters !! it works so much better then regular VUs, I see you have some great comps but I think none of these are like the Nail, totally different beats it could be a great addition to what you already haveheh
Old 1st April 2010
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdjice View Post
the options are great an I love the Meters !! it works so much better then regular VUs, I see you have some great comps but I think none of these are like the Nail, totally different beats it could be a great addition to what you already haveheh
Oh great!

That's really helping!

;-)

p.
Old 1st April 2010
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piotr View Post
Oh great!

That's really helping!

;-)

p.
I know !! you are welcome !!!hehhehheh
Old 1st April 2010
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdjice View Post
I know !! you are welcome !!!hehhehheh
Sweet Lord Jesus, help me in this moment of weakness...

p.
Old 1st April 2010
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piotr View Post
Sweet Lord Jesus, help me in this moment of weakness...

p.
okok....heh
A Designs Audio - HM2 Compressor "Nail"
Buy A-Designs HM2 Compressor "Nail" | Compressors & Limiters | Musician's Friend
Old 1st April 2010
  #26
Old 1st April 2010
  #27
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdjice View Post
while mixing with it, how much DB of GR do you guys usually get?
I am usually hitting a Manley "Vari-Mu" or a Signal Audio Workshop "Gainrider" with a slow attack first for a couple dB of reduction and Tone Shaping and then using the using Nail with a really fast attack to grab a couple dB of stray transients that sneak through. The combo works really well for me and the limiter does not have to work as hard in mastering if I need big levels.
Old 1st April 2010
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcm View Post
I am usually hitting a Manley "Vari-Mu" or a Signal Audio Workshop "Gainrider" with a slow attack first for a couple dB of reduction and Tone Shaping and then using the using Nail with a really fast attack to grab a couple dB of stray transients that sneak through. The combo works really well for me and the limiter does not have to work as hard in mastering if I need big levels.
cool thx !
Old 2nd April 2010
  #29
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One thing that makes this unit stand-out above the rest is the side-chain feature. Seriously...the thing that has always been a drag with other buss compressors is that you were forced to send the entire mix, including all the low-end through it. Of course there are many work-arounds and a few buss comps have side-chaining abilities, but this unit is different. If doing rock music it's not an issue in most cases. However when mixing hip-hop, dance or R&B for instance, you may not want your low-end too processed. These genres tend to be really bass heavy and it complicates the overall mix. Not saying it can't be accomplished but with the NAIL's side-chain feature not only can you select a variable frequency to "bypass" but as the mix develops you can choose how much of the low end you wish to process. That to me makes it totally unique!

As mentioned, it is a transparent and hi-fi type of unit. Though I notice an indelible character. It is a tube unit, after all.
It's kind of like a "Tranny on Santa Monica Blvd., west of Fairfax". It may be dressed like a lady, but it still has balls!

Hell half the time I'm not exactly sure what it's doing (in a quantifiable way), but I just listen to the mix and whatever is happening I really like.
Old 2nd April 2010
  #30
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robot gigante's Avatar
Looks like finally I am able get a Nail... can't wait!
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