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compression usage

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Postby yamaz » Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:20 pm

So what elements of your track should you be compressing? Full drum kit channel or just the kick or kick + snare? What about bass, melody, pads, incidental sounds and one shots? And which should be sidechained?
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Postby silentk » Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:57 pm

compression is not that finite
i hear so many people at college saying shit like, "have you done your compressing yet?" "should i compress this?" "does a snare need compression?"

I think you probably need to read a little more about what compressors are and what they do - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_range_compression

There's nothing you should or shouldn't be compressing, it's about what needs it

Are the levels on your bass part jumping all over the place?
is the attack on you snare sounding a bit flabby?

Personaly, in terms of drums, there are very few elements i would individualy compress, and rather group sounds into hi hats and odd percussion, then a snare/kick channel, compress those busses, and then group those two into one final drum bus and have a compressor there to gel everything together and get it punching nicely. but that is personal preference.

Side chaining is a very diverse technique, you can do the usual bass sidechained from the kick and get the classic house pumping sound, but sidechaining can be used on anything you want, again there are no hard or fast rules, just experiment with different things. Do bear in mind though, that when sidechaining it's good to use something which varies a lot in level as the source, like a kick drum. if the sidechain source is a constant volume it's not gonna do anything to the target than reduce the overall volume, ya get meh?


hope 've been of help, tell me to fuck off if you already know this shit and i'm being patronising! :t:
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Postby Rekah » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:01 pm

silentk wrote:compression is not that finite
i hear so many people at college saying shit like, "have you done your compressing yet?" "should i compress this?" "does a snare need compression?"

I think you probably need to read a little more about what compressors are and what they do - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_range_compression

There's nothing you should or shouldn't be compressing, it's about what needs it

Are the levels on your bass part jumping all over the place?
is the attack on you snare sounding a bit flabby?

Personaly, in terms of drums, there are very few elements i would individualy compress, and rather group sounds into hi hats and odd percussion, then a snare/kick channel, compress those busses, and then group those two into one final drum bus and have a compressor there to gel everything together and get it punching nicely. but that is personal preference.

Side chaining is a very diverse technique, you can do the usual bass sidechained from the kick and get the classic house pumping sound, but sidechaining can be used on anything you want, again there are no hard or fast rules, just experiment with different things. Do bear in mind though, that when sidechaining it's good to use something which varies a lot in level as the source, like a kick drum. if the sidechain source is a constant volume it's not gonna do anything to the target than reduce the overall volume, ya get meh?


hope 've been of help, tell me to fuck off if you already know this shit and i'm being patronising! :t:


wow thats answered a load of questions that ive always wondered :h:
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Postby nitz » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:14 pm

Rekah wrote:
silentk wrote:

Are the levels on your bass part jumping all over the place?
is the attack on you snare sounding a bit flabby?:


I think he just summed it up too you in a sentence or so. Compression is a dynamical controller, (however, it can be used for many or things and techniques) in essences in a lazy way to control levels. E.G if you sub is not at a controlled level, i.e the level is tending to fluctuate alot, then compression should be applied to keep a controlled level, by reducing the dynamic range (the difference between the lowest level and the highest level)
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Postby silentk » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:26 pm

nitz wrote: Compression is a dynamical controller, (however, it can be used for many or things and techniques) in essences in a lazy way to control levels. E.G if you sub is not at a controlled level, i.e the level is tending to fluctuate alot, then compression should be applied to keep a controlled level, by reducing the dynamic range (the difference between the lowest level and the highest level)

This is the crux of it

Think of it like a really bumpy bit of tarmac, and you're getting a big 'ole jackhammer and smashing down all the bumps so that it's even.

(in it's most severe usage, known as brickwall compression)
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Postby nitz » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:30 pm

silentk wrote:
nitz wrote: Compression is a dynamical controller, (however, it can be used for many or things and techniques) in essences in a lazy way to control levels. E.G if you sub is not at a controlled level, i.e the level is tending to fluctuate alot, then compression should be applied to keep a controlled level, by reducing the dynamic range (the difference between the lowest level and the highest level)

This is the crux of it

Think of it like a really bumpy bit of tarmac, and you're getting a big 'ole jackhammer and smashing down all the bumps so that it's even.

(in it's most severe usage, known as brickwall compression)


Haha that a wicked example, not though of that one before :D
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Postby narcissus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:31 pm

when the question comes up, "should i compress this?"

i usually leave it these guys to answer:

Image
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Postby Pedro Sánchez » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:35 pm

Macc 2 years ago wrote:Idiot's description of compression:

Compressor listens, hears a 'loud bit' (threshold), turns it down a certain amount (ratio) as quickly as it is told to (attack). Loud bit finishes, compressor starts turning it back to normal level (release).

Think of watching TV - the adverts start and blow your head off cos they're so fucking loud. You could say it exceeded your 'threshold'. So you fumble for the remote control and eventually manage to turn it down by hammering the volume down button (attack). Eventually after you turn it down by a certain amount (ratio) it sounds alright. Then the adverts finish and you can't hear the fucking programme you were watching, and you have to find the remote again to turn it back up to where it was in the first place (release).

That's an idiot description but it is actually quite good :D

This explains it rather well.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_ra ... 28audio%29
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Postby silentk » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:40 pm

pretty much blew my description outta the water...
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Postby narcissus » Sat Jul 17, 2010 7:50 pm

love it.. i'm gonna quote that to my friends when they ask...
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Postby Sharmaji » Sat Jul 17, 2010 9:27 pm

i compress until it gives me a boner, and then I limit for dynamic range.
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Postby nowaysj » Sun Jul 18, 2010 12:03 am

Tricky thing with compressors is they do so much, all through modulating the dynamic range, but all of their applications aren't strictly related to adjusting the dynamic range. If that makes any sense, and I don't think it does.

Compression is hard. I have a very hard time hearing 8ms attack vs 16ms attack vs .5ms attack :x It's a hard one.

It's great to see how other competent people use compression, a lot to be learned there. Just keep studying.
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Postby colours » Sun Jul 18, 2010 2:50 am

Personaly, in terms of drums, there are very few elements i would individualy compress, and rather group sounds into hi hats and odd percussion, then a snare/kick channel, compress those busses, and then group those two into one final drum bus and have a compressor there to gel everything together and get it punching nicely. but that is personal preference.

How would I go about 'grouping' in Logic? You mean like sending 2 channels to the same compressor?
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Postby vertx » Sun Jul 18, 2010 6:26 am

How would I go about 'grouping' in Logic? You mean like sending 2 channels to the same compressor?


Grouping is something like if you had your kicks and snares, hats, etc in different channels in the mixer so you can individually process them with effects and then changing the outputs of each to say Bus 1 instead of "stereo out", the idea being the different kit elements brought together (in bus 1) make the drums sound more together and in the same space.

Here i have the outputs from ultrabeat sent to the mixer then to bus 7 for grouping, then from bus 7 to stereo out.
http://www.mediafire.com/i/?om1e9klf36ug0x9

http://www.mediafire.com/i/?ahrhvliy85y42cu

Hope that helps
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Postby colours » Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:03 pm



Yes! Thanks alot mate you're a star, got it sorted now!
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Postby chewie » Sun Jul 18, 2010 3:46 pm

Sharmaji wrote:i compress until it gives me a boner, and then I limit for dynamic range.


Fuckin ROFL!

Just to add my 2 cents - use a compressor to control the signal so you get a more even sound in other words so you aren't always reaching for the fader to change the level up or down. Remember to bring the gain up to compensate for how much gain reduction you've done or it's a waste of time. As to what elements to compress, trial and error.
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Postby macc » Sun Jul 18, 2010 8:26 pm

Sharmaji wrote:i compress until it gives me a boner


You, my friend, have real problems.
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Postby samurai » Sun Jul 18, 2010 11:39 pm

i used to add compression to every element. but recently i've stopped and only applied it to things that actually need it. some elements in the track are fine and don't need to be compressed. they're doing ok. but i sometimes use compression as an effect crushing shit and whatnot.
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Postby nowaysj » Mon Jul 19, 2010 12:10 am

In the last week, I've just started side chaining EVERYTHING, and no one can stop me, or honey here, is dead.
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Postby Sharmaji » Mon Jul 19, 2010 12:57 am

macc wrote:
Sharmaji wrote:i compress until it gives me a boner


You, my friend, have real problems.



trust

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