Demolishing the Myths Of Compression
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Old 11-12-2015, 02:55 AM   #1
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Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

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I can guarantee you that this will be something new for the the majority. Today I can safely say that, concept wise I understand what a compression does. But if you want to talk about what its really doing to a sound, when you're compressing it with a very low threshold, a very slow atk and and a fast rls time I'll have no clue except tell you that "it might sound bad".

Every time I rely on the numbers that are appearing on my screen while I'm playing with my compressor, at some point it just doesnt look right when compared to what I'm HEARING in the end. This article explains just that...

Hopefully this helps!!

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Old 11-12-2015, 02:17 PM   #2
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Some people lose sleep over really inconsequential stuff.

Kind of like my SUPER AUTISTIC co-worker...he'll have nightmares about a brake caliper he couldn't get working properly during the day. Fucking Albert,,,lol.

Anyway. Yeah yeah, use your ears. Two thirds... whatever.
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Old 11-12-2015, 04:45 PM   #3
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Weeee, I knew this... subconsciously.

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Old 11-12-2015, 06:14 PM   #4
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

I am surprised that I learned some things from this.
They taught us the wrong thing in Sound Engineering school back in the day!

But this does remind me of frequency response definitions for high pass and low pass filters' corner frequencies.
The corner frequencies are actually where the level drops 6 dB. At least that's how I remember it. So the "edges" of filtered frequencies tend to be "rounded". Sorry if the way I'm explaining this is confusing. Anyways, it's interesting.

Thanks for the article

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Old 12-12-2015, 01:50 AM   #5
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Yeah - good grab… I really got something from that last point - that every sound / track will have an ultimate threshold for a compressor's settings… It's obvious, and acknowledged, but I never really knew why or how… I've always been like the author was - a little unsure of when too much is too much (although I fancy myself pretty handy with a compressor …). Elasticity is great analogy...

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Old 12-12-2015, 02:42 AM   #6
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Thanks for posting this. I learned some things also.

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Old 12-12-2015, 05:04 AM   #7
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Ive read this before. Fantastic.

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Old 12-12-2015, 05:50 AM   #8
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Yeah I enjoyed the read as well thx!

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Old 12-12-2015, 12:41 PM   #9
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Making dynamic rage greater with compression? I thought you had to be a wizard to do that.
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Old 11-02-2017, 12:03 AM   #10
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Quote:
Originally Posted by neyus View Post
I can guarantee you that this will be something new for the the majority. Today I can safely say that, concept wise I understand what a compression does. But if you want to talk about what its really doing to a sound, when you're compressing it with a very low threshold, a very slow atk and and a fast rls time I'll have no clue except tell you that "it might sound bad".

Every time I rely on the numbers that are appearing on my screen while I'm playing with my compressor, at some point it just doesnt look right when compared to what I'm HEARING in the end. This article explains just that...

Hopefully this helps!!
I found this really helpful dude! I was wondering if you have any more insight through experience on sidechain settings to the kick. In professional waveforms, when pulled into a DAW, most tracks show little to no gaps in level between the kick and the synths. I always struggle to replicate this consistency with my sidechain settings. I think I may be setting the thresholds too low, or maybe I should compress to a shorter ghost kick and adjust the release from there. How would you recommend doing this? Thanks
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Old 13-02-2017, 04:21 PM   #11
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

yeah thanks for that awesome read!!! I love compression now!
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Old 18-03-2017, 07:43 AM   #12
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Interesting read. I recently discovered TDR Nova to do eq, compression, expansion on individual bands. I'm finding it pretty transparent and powerful and so far I think it's helping my mixes so I might use my standard compressors less now. Anyone else doing this or other combined EQ and compressors?
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Old 18-03-2017, 12:07 PM   #13
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

wait what ? compression had myths ? what about equalizer legends ?

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Old 23-03-2017, 07:43 PM   #14
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

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Originally Posted by D42K732202 View Post
wait what ? compression had myths ? what about equalizer legends ?
yea it does!
an example is that compression makes a signal louder.

as for equalizer legends....

...pro-Q

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Old 24-03-2017, 01:52 AM   #15
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Nothing very new there for me. /crapboast

So there's no consistent standard for att and rel times (true), but the same times with different shaped response curves could sound longer or shorter, so why should 2/3rds rule of thumb be any less incorrect than other compression myths? Every compressor sounds different, so the numbers should never be used as a strict rule. Use your ears, innit.

A really good idea for understanding compression is to build your own compressor in some modular environment (e.g. Synthedit, Synthmaker, Buzz, Bidule, MAXMSP, etc). Grab some maths modules and a peak follower of some description, and it becomes self evident that the attack and release functions are rates of change/slew.

I think I've linked this Rob Acid interview on mastering compression a few dozen times here over the years... Well worth a watch if you're stuck using compressors like a hammer:
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Old 24-03-2017, 02:45 AM   #16
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression



My favorite video demonstrating an intuitive way to see and understand compression. It really helps to mess with settings and see/hear the results until you get it seared into your brain.

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Old 28-03-2017, 01:52 PM   #17
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Old 06-04-2017, 10:32 PM   #18
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Once i recorded sounds from an air compressor. the attack and release depended on how i opened the valve.

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Old 07-04-2017, 07:42 AM   #19
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kvlt O))) View Post
Making dynamic rage greater with compression? I thought you had to be a wizard to do that.
you absolutely can make dynamic range greater with compression.

imagine a drum hit and a compressor set up with a low threshold and slow enough attack to let the transient through. the tail will be compressed and the transient will not (put crudely), thus expanding the dynamic range.

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Old 07-04-2017, 04:08 PM   #20
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Re: Demolishing the Myths Of Compression

For me, the easiest way to do it is to crank the non-linearity setting way up in Presswerk or to use the graph in maximus. With maximus, you can actually do all sorts of crazy stuff. I like to start linear, then flatten early, then make up for it with an increased slope as the level approaches zero. This way, every drum hit goes through compression followed by expansion, then the reverse as it comes down. It gives me about 40% more thump. But be careful, if you go too far, you get about 80% more click.

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