Old 12-02-2019, 03:41 PM   #1
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Default compression question (again



i assumed that if i put a threshold of -6db on the compressor it would only push down the peaks as shown on the EQ diagram...

but thats not the case

it pushes down even high frequencies that are below the threshold,

can you explain


and am i right that the compressor should only compress those peaks on the EQ diagram?


thanks
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Old 12-02-2019, 03:49 PM   #2
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The peaks are what turn the "automatic volume control" on/off, not what frequencies are affected - to only turn down specific frequencies you need a multi-band compressor or a dynamic EQ. That said, I see the confusion, it will "level" peaks but that is across the frequency range, not what the frequency is.
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Old 12-02-2019, 03:50 PM   #3
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You might be thinking a multiband compressor. If it's a single band, the whole thing will be compressed down when the volume peaks over the threshold. It compresses the overall signal, when the overall volume crosses the threshold.

With a multiband compressor, you can set up different thresholds and compression on each individual band. Multiband still isn't going to just "compress frequencies over a threshold", but you can kind of get closer to what you're thinking.


edit: Karbo beat me to the punch
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Old 12-02-2019, 03:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karbomusic View Post
The peaks are what turn the "automatic volume control" on/off, not what frequencies are affected - to only turn down specific frequencies you need a multi-band compressor or a dynamic EQ. That said, I see the confusion, it will "level" peaks but that is across the frequency range, not what the frequency is.
Quote:
Originally Posted by nait View Post
You might be thinking a multiband compressor. If it's a single band, the whole thing will be compressed down when the volume peaks over the threshold. It compresses the overall signal, when the overall volume crosses the threshold.

With a multiband compressor, you can set up different thresholds and compression on each individual band. Multiband still isn't going to just "compress frequencies over a threshold", but you can kind of get closer to what you're thinking.


edit: Karbo beat me to the punch

thanks for your answers

but then this would mean the compressor is just a volume fader but its not as compressors reduce dynamic range wheres a volume fader does not do that
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Old 12-02-2019, 04:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by read View Post
thanks for your answers

but then this would mean the compressor is just a volume fader but its not as compressors reduce dynamic range wheres a volume fader does not do that
It depends on how you think about it... If you manually turned the a fader down every time the volume peaked, and back up when it wasn't peaking you'd still get a reduced dynamic range.

The entire idea of it being a like a fader is a good one because that is exactly what it is designed to try to "smartly" do. People often say "but some compressors color the sound" but that too was a byproduct of trying to make it act act like a fader using electronics instead of hands (aka automatic level control). FWIW, there are a lot of beloved devices that color the sound where that color was due to technological limitations at their onset, we just happen to like how those sonic failures sounded after the fact.
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Old 12-02-2019, 04:10 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by karbomusic View Post
It depends on how you think about it... If you manually turned the a fader down every time the volume peaked, and back up when it wasn't peaking you'd still get a reduced dynamic range.

The entire idea of it being a like a fader is a good one because that is exactly what it is designed to try to "smartly" do. People often say "but some compressors color the sound" but that too was a byproduct of trying to make it act act like a fader using electronics instead of hands (aka automatic level control).

if i have a kick playing and i try to lower the volume fader each time it played, the whole signal would go down and all the waveform would become smaller

if i put a compressor on the kick, the waveform would seem chopped off at the peaks but the lower parts of its waveform would remain the same.

so still not sure if doing it manually with volume would do the same job

like this pic

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Old 12-02-2019, 04:20 PM   #7
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If you let that be 50 kick hits on a track and some are too soft and some are too loud, then we are right back to the virtual fader and reduced dynamic range. You could still do it to a single kick hit, say turn down the transient and let the ring be louder (with really short attack/release times) but usually by the time we are in that tiny slice of time domain, we call them transient designers - fancy word for manual compressor/limiter/adjustment thingy for very short transients like kicks.
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Old 12-02-2019, 04:24 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by karbomusic View Post
If you let that be 50 kick hits on a track and some are too soft and some are too loud, then we are right back to the virtual fader and reduced dynamic range. You could still do it to a single kick hit, say turn down the transient and let the ring be louder (with really short attack/release times) but usually by the time we are in that tiny slice of time domain, we call them transient designers - fancy word for manual compressor/limiter/adjustment thingy for very short transients like kicks.

its more clear in my head now much appreciated
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Old 12-02-2019, 04:32 PM   #9
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The fader analogy in this example of a single kick also works a little better if you don't think of the WHOLE waveform being compressed. I mean, it might be, depending on the length of the sound, and the compressor settings. But in your samples, the compressor only compressed a brief moment when the volume got too loud in that sound (so that'd be equivalent to you flicking the fader super quickly).. and the goal is to tighten up the dynamic range of the sound.

Then with compressors you have settings like knee, attack, release which will be part of what determine when and how long that compressor is doing its magic.
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Last edited by nait; 12-02-2019 at 06:36 PM.
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Old 12-02-2019, 04:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nait View Post
The fader analogy also works a little better if you don't think of the WHOLE waveform being compressed. I mean, it might be, depending on the length of the sound, and the compressor settings. But in your samples, the compressor only compressed a brief moment when the volume got too loud in that sound (so that'd be equivalent to you flicking the fader super quickly).. and the goal is to tighten up the dynamic range of the sound.

Then with compressors you have settings like knee, attack, release which will be part of what determine when and how long that compressor is doing its magic.
thanks its much more clear now thanks for your help Nait, Karbo!
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Old 12-02-2019, 04:42 PM   #11
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No problem. Karbo's answer is a little better I think though because in your example, you're kind of just talking about compression on a single kick hit. As karbo was saying, the effect of compression looks a lot different over the span of a song where, in your example, you're taming those wild kicks that don't play nice with everyone else (although that isnt the only reason people use compression).
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Old 12-02-2019, 05:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
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No problem. Karbo's answer is a little better I think though because in your example, you're kind of just talking about compression on a single kick hit. As karbo was saying, the effect of compression looks a lot different over the span of a song where, in your example, you're taming those wild kicks that don't play nice with everyone else (although that isnt the only reason people use compression).
exactly i forget sometimes to think the overall picture and concentrate on specific things...noted now
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:11 PM   #13
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Read, based on your posts, might I auggest this tutorial?

https://m.youtube.com/playlist?list=...MA9IoMNaXmaZU5

David is sort of the 'Kenny Gioia of outboard gear'...
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