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Thread: Compression suggestions please

  1. #11
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    Keith, could you post a clip of the audio that is represented by the pics?
    It would help a lot, thanks.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by spottydog10 View Post
    Keith, could you post a clip of the audio that is represented by the pics?
    It would help a lot, thanks.
    It's your first posting and the one I had posted before.
    "... I know in the mornin' that it's gonna be good
    when I stick out my elbows and they don't bump wood." - Bill Kirchen

  3. #13
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    Oh yeah
    I have a previous acoustic guitar take which is very non dynamic, more of a pad.
    I'm going to do another more dynamic take on top of the other and see where it leads me.

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    Sometimes more dynamics could be a good thing.

    Compression gives you less dynamics. It squashes the dynamics. That's why if the sound and dynamics are okay but the volume fluctuates, that's when I'd do volume automation. Volume automation doesn't do anything about dynamics, just volume. There's a really cool Reaper video by Kenny Gioia that shows a few tricks that way.

    Compression is also a big part of the sound of most stuff that isn't Jazz or Classical music. Whether we realize it or not, there's been gobs of it on everything for decades. An acoustic guitar and a vocal on its own might not even need or benefit from compression before the mastering stage. Acoustic guitar and vocal in a bigger mix with distorted guitars and drums might need substantial compression to get it to even sit in the mix.

    Plus there's just certain compressors that work easier for specific stuff. It's not uncommon to have a few different ones to go to for whatever character they might have.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by snow lizard View Post
    Sometimes more dynamics could be a good thing.

    Compression gives you less dynamics. It squashes the dynamics. That's why if the sound and dynamics are okay but the volume fluctuates, that's when I'd do volume automation. Volume automation doesn't do anything about dynamics, just volume. There's a really cool Reaper video by Kenny Gioia that shows a few tricks that way.

    Compression is also a big part of the sound of most stuff that isn't Jazz or Classical music. Whether we realize it or not, there's been gobs of it on everything for decades. An acoustic guitar and a vocal on its own might not even need or benefit from compression before the mastering stage. Acoustic guitar and vocal in a bigger mix with distorted guitars and drums might need substantial compression to get it to even sit in the mix.

    Plus there's just certain compressors that work easier for specific stuff. It's not uncommon to have a few different ones to go to for whatever character they might have.
    Yes. Old tricks are sometimes the only tricks.
    Chord with this, Teddy......

  6. #16
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    Of course "dynamics" means almost exactly "changes in volume". It can actually refer to any number of things depending on the time scale that you're looking at. You can have kind of "meta" dynamics where different whole sections of a piece are at different levels - like the soft verse loud chorus thing. Then you have "macro" dynamics within each of those sections where each note or hit might be different - in this case some uneven strumming. Then there's the "micro" dynamics - what I usually call the "envelope" - the way that individual notes or hits develop - Attack, decay, sustain, release... Certain strategies are more appropriate for dealing with each of these.

    When you're trying to adjust two or three of these things at the same time, it's important to think about what order you want to do it in. It seems most people try to do it micro>macro>meta, but for me it usually works better to do it the opposite direction. The compressor you strap on to control the micro dynamics will always be affected by the macro dynamics. If one hit is quieter than the next, it won't get squashed as hard, and it's micro dynamics won't be changed as much. If you bring them both closer in level first (macro), then they should come out the compression closer to the same.


    Edit to put it a slightly different way - Leveling before compression is essentially like having a more consistent performance to begin with. Nobody would ever argue that a more consistent performance wouldn't just help and make any peak compression more consistent and natural. Volume leveling may not be ideal, but it can have same effect, but only if it comes before the compressor. (And of course my first reply uses a compressor to affect volume leveling because we can do that with digital tools in ways that analog comps can't)

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    It's also helpful and not uncommon in a complicated mix to be able to ride the volume of a given track both pre and post FX chain. Before, as Ash mentioned, to give compression something more consistant to squish. Once the sound is what you want (post effects) a second volume envelope to balance the level of the track in the mix to what it needs to be at any given moment.

    Must have been interesting in the days before console automation when the mix engineer would solicit the help of another 4 or so pairs of hands to do rides in real time while printing the mix.

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    Re recorded it with different mics, modified both the space and my playing, see what you think.


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    Quote Originally Posted by spottydog10 View Post
    ashcat, I used reacomp and it does sound better.



    How do I get around the issue of the precomp pushing the track out of time? Track compensation?

    alterman, yes I could use volume automation but it's time consuming and I really should get me head around compressors, cheers.
    Cheers
    Try a bunch of different compressors. They're not all the same. Some are distinctly more transparent than others when placed on the exact same settings.

    I didn't read much of the previous threads, but you can time the attack and release to the bpm of the song. Convert the ms to bpm and sometimes this helps keep the groove intact.

  10. #20
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    Maybe instead of compressing the track you can use parallel compression keeping the dynamics of the original track and adding energy with the parallel one

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