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Best mix/master comp/lim for dance/pop ($6k budget)
Old 24th December 2011
Lives for gear

Well using hardware with your DAW you need converter channels or be prepared for the time it takes to do lots of passes with limited converter I/O so look into those options as part of Hybrid costs. Using mic pres outside of tracking with DAWs is a standard hybrid practice to get digital sounding better. Look up member Skip Burrows posts about his tricks with it if you have not read those threads here yet. Just remember to pad your converter's line level out signal down to a mic level for input into the pres. As far as the 651 and PBC-6A, both are VCA type comps, both are worth having, and both do different things, neither does the SSL thing, so it's an apples and oranges thing. I'm sure there are other gearslutz in Orlando that have this gear that you could hang with for a day to hear what it does. Lastly getting back to the 2 buss . . . "The Glue" plug is probably your cheapest option for a SSL vibe. The hardware side of that is going to be a SSL clone. Though I've not personally heard one myself there are posts of guys using an Overstayer Stereo VCA to do the SSL 2 buss thing that you could read up on since they don't cost much either. The biggest thing to keep in mind with hybrid is there is no single magic box. The improvements you seek are going to be from a combination of gear.
Old 24th December 2011
dont get the glue or the aphex...or the pbc for that matter (tried 2 of those - nice channel comps but not for mix bus IMO...defo not got the SSL grab/punch)...

IMO you would be much better off getting a nicely built SSL clone from someone like Regular John or that Stefan DIY guy in europe...prob around $800-1000...the clean VCA grab is much more convincing esp in the low end in hardware than software...thats as far as my own testing has shown. I spent some time playing with the Glue and an SSL clone to see the difference...its worth it IMO (depending on budget of course) given how cheap an SSL hardware clone is - and the fact that you are messing with your master signal and prob only really want 1 instance of the SSL compression-so do it right. I have an Overstayer VCA and I would say its cool but not as grabby on 2-3 db compression than an SSL. It excels on higher levels of compression. 2db on an SSL @30ms attack -> G10 V Mu should be sweet. You are on the right lines there. If you want some saturation colour I would look at doing that on a track by track basis as opposed to master buss...could use a plugin there like the Sknote/UBK1/CDsoundmaster plugins...or a fatso/Portico 5042/soundskulptor tape sat in hardware. IMO the Nebula/CDSoundmaster do a very sweet job in plugin format-very close to hardware. | gallery

Regular John Recording - Raleigh, NC
Old 24th December 2011
Lives for gear
Ain't Nobody's Avatar

Well, I heard the Obsidian at a friend's place, but didn't have time to a/b against The Glue. Loved it... but pretty serious $.

Right now, I'm running the vocals, percussion, bass, guitars out to the G10 separatedly... and then another 2db with full gain for the master... but still definitely need something else for the grab. The Glue is doing that duty currently, but looking at other options.

The pbc would be for guitar and vocal tracking only probably. Usually everything else is programmed and coming from Logic internally anyway.

Duet can be a workflow killer for sure, but it seems to sound pretty decent as far as the converters. Don't have anything super high-end to a/b it against, tho.

Pre would be for mellowing out individual tracks as well as general track thickening.... and if I'm going out to a comp anyway, why not see if I can really wrangle the most from the trip before returning to a/d.

Ones I'm looking at have line level option as well, so I can experiment there... basically, I'm thinking the big honking trannies ought to help keep the pointy bits at bay.

I've been doing one pass out for karaoke buss (all but vocals) with Glue for pump... and then another lesser pump after it comes back in over everything... gets a little motion going, but not so much that it interferes with vocals. Still working on that, but also thinking I need a little something different on the master. Really considering the stc-8, but it would be in addition to, rather than replacing ssl type.

Basically, for the master, I'm looking for two things:

SSL style grab
Something else to take it over the top, and provide that final glue... so really looking at probably 3 stage compression since I like what the G10 does too.
Old 12th March 2012
Gear Maniac
M.o.T.s's Avatar

Originally Posted by SWAN808 View Post
IMO you would be much better off getting a nicely built SSL clone
Clones like these ones regularly appear on eBay.
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