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Thread: use of mid/side compression

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    use of mid/side compression

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    I just got the dbx 160 compressor, and playing around with the m/s functions. Wow, it really adds a stereo component to the sound for the mix when you increase the side make-up gain. Really, you gotta watch the reverb going into the m/s function because it will accentuate the reverb by turning up the sides.

    Any tips for a nooby on the dbx 160 ? I mix a lot of acoustic music (vocals, acoustic guitar, mandolin, upright bass and banjo).

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    I'd be pretty cautious about M/S processing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pcstudios View Post
    I just got the dbx 160 compressor, and playing around with the m/s functions. Wow, it really adds a stereo component to the sound for the mix when you increase the side make-up gain. Really, you gotta watch the reverb going into the m/s function because it will accentuate the reverb by turning up the sides.

    Any tips for a nooby on the dbx 160 ? I mix a lot of acoustic music (vocals, acoustic guitar, mandolin, upright bass and banjo).
    I used to use 160's on the drum buss a lot... Electric bass, pretty much the 1176 crowd. Wouldn't be my go-to on most acoustic stuff. That said, if you like what it's doing, go for it. As far as mid-side goes, gentle as hell is usually best. But experiment hard.

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    Now! I assure you I get nowt for this but...
    The current issue of Sound on Sound has an article about M/S.

    Dave.

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    Could this be used to bring the vocals UP in a single stereo track , without stepping on the bass and drums that live mostly in the middle ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark skinner View Post
    Could this be used to bring the vocals UP in a single stereo track , without stepping on the bass and drums that live mostly in the middle ?
    This is as much a question as it is a statement. But I would think for bass, the vocals would have no problem being in the center for that. On drums, snare and cymbals would be a problem. But snare panned slightly and the cymbals I would rarely have in the middle. So slight reduction (I never do but) something in the vocal range would keep your vocals from competing I think piano, guitar etc. would be more of a problem.

    I will be honest, I have tried to use M/S and I can't say I understand them.
    @ecc83 - Dave do you have a link to that article on SoS?
    DM60 Tunes: The Collection

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    I have a very basic mid-side VST by Terry West. It has a 3 band EQ and level for the mid and the same for the side. Playing a little bit with the level and EQ for the mid....you can possibly make the vocals stand out a bit more.....but you have to be very careful. So many things are in or near the middle....especially in a mix with more than a few tracks. To be honest.......I too don't understand how it works........but I can tell you that you can easily ruin a track or mix if you go too far.

    Mick
    Just A Song Writer..........

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    Quote Originally Posted by DM60 View Post
    This is as much a question as it is a statement. But I would think for bass, the vocals would have no problem being in the center for that. On drums, snare and cymbals would be a problem. But snare panned slightly and the cymbals I would rarely have in the middle. So slight reduction (I never do but) something in the vocal range would keep your vocals from competing I think piano, guitar etc. would be more of a problem.

    I will be honest, I have tried to use M/S and I can't say I understand them.
    @ecc83 - Dave do you have a link to that article on SoS?
    buy the paper copy.
    I do know that if you subscribe you can now download the whole magazine as .pdf.

    Dave.

    Sorry DM I only ever just.

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    Sorry again! Cocked that up a bi.

    Dave.

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    You can easily derive "mid" and "side" tracks (what I'd call sum and difference channels) without any plugins, just using pan and polarity. Drop a stereo track into your DAW, then duplicate the track. On the copy, pan it the opposite way and invert the polarity. Mix the two together at equal levels and the result is the side channel.

    Make another copy and pan the two tracks center. That's your mid channel. If you have your levels set correctly (be careful about pan laws) and you don't apply any processing then mixing all those together should result in the same sound as the original track.

    To process the side channel, assign the two tracks (the normal one plus the reversed/inverted on) to a submix bus and insert plugins there. To process the mid channel just insert the plugin right onto the channel, or make a bus for it if you want.

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