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  • Drew_TNBDDrew_TNBD Frets: 22445
    Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    When you stack what is your process, is it something like well this individual track needs it peaks tamed a bit as its pokey so you put a bit of compression on that track, then later on in that track's bus you do a little more to affect the whole bus etc or is it multiple compressors on a single track?

    I still find hearing subtle compression tricky sometimes so I think I have a tendency to go for fewer compressors doing more...and prob still ruin it sometimes :)
    Grahame from Recordingrevolution goes into it here:

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  • colourofsoundcolourofsound Frets: 392
    edited June 2017
    Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    @PolarityMan What Drew is doing here is called Serial Compression, i.e putting one effect after the other. So the effect of compression is cumulative, so if you stack a number of compressors at low settings you'll get a more subtly reduced dynamic range, (i.e, 3 compressors set at 2:1 ratio combines to form a 6:1 ratio by the time the audio has got through the last compressor) and the the compressors won't crap out in the same way as if you'd put one compressor on at high settings.

    In answer to your question (not that you asked me, but I am OP ) I use my ears! Sounds obvious, but I don't have a thought process so much as putting stuff where it's needed. I'm very much an engineer before a mixer so I really like to get as much done in the room as possible so that mixing is very simple.

    Some things I do without thinking though is high-pass EQ almost every track except for kick and bass; cutting out the boominess to leave room for the bits that belong there.

    Something else worth noting is that I rarely use compression for it's intended purpose - level/dynamic control - instead I'll use it to create a certain sound or get a bit of mojo. If you've got really cutting peaks (i.e a loud snare hit) the only real way of taming that is with automation.
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264
    Drew_TNBD said:
    Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    When you stack what is your process, is it something like well this individual track needs it peaks tamed a bit as its pokey so you put a bit of compression on that track, then later on in that track's bus you do a little more to affect the whole bus etc or is it multiple compressors on a single track?

    I still find hearing subtle compression tricky sometimes so I think I have a tendency to go for fewer compressors doing more...and prob still ruin it sometimes :)
    Grahame from Recordingrevolution goes into it here:

    Cheers, Ill watch that later
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264
    Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    @PolarityMan 
    In answer to your question (not that you asked me, but I am OP ) I use my ears! Sounds obvious, but I don't have a thought process so much as putting stuff where it's needed. I'm very much an engineer before a mixer so I really like to get as much done in the room as possible so that mixing is very simple.

    Something else worth noting is that I rarely use compression for it's intended purpose - level/dynamic control - instead I'll use it to create a certain sound or get a bit of mojo. If you've got really cutting peaks (i.e a loud snare hit) the only real way of taming that is with automation.
    Sadly my ears are not as trained as I would wish them to be in this regard. Need to keep practicing at it.

    I've seen someone on a vid recently, think it might have been Logan Mader basically squashing the living fuck out of the drums to the point that there is virtually no transient then putting it back in with a transient designer. I don't have access to a transient designer plugin but wondered what people's thought were.

    Im guessing that automation youre thinking of just dipping down rogue hits, but I suppose if you wanted to bring up lighter hits to meet the loud ones that might be easier with a copmressor right?


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  • Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    @PolarityMan 
    In answer to your question (not that you asked me, but I am OP ) I use my ears! Sounds obvious, but I don't have a thought process so much as putting stuff where it's needed. I'm very much an engineer before a mixer so I really like to get as much done in the room as possible so that mixing is very simple.

    Something else worth noting is that I rarely use compression for it's intended purpose - level/dynamic control - instead I'll use it to create a certain sound or get a bit of mojo. If you've got really cutting peaks (i.e a loud snare hit) the only real way of taming that is with automation.
    Sadly my ears are not as trained as I would wish them to be in this regard. Need to keep practicing at it.

    I've seen someone on a vid recently, think it might have been Logan Mader basically squashing the living fuck out of the drums to the point that there is virtually no transient then putting it back in with a transient designer. I don't have access to a transient designer plugin but wondered what people's thought were.

    Im guessing that automation youre thinking of just dipping down rogue hits, but I suppose if you wanted to bring up lighter hits to meet the loud ones that might be easier with a copmressor right?


    That sounds horrific to me; and pointless! Unless he's doing that in parallel and mixing it in with the dry signal! It's all a matter of taste though, and what original files you have to work with, what genre you're mixing and so on. But that's not something I'd ever want to do. I generally work on the basis that albums were made in the 70s and 80s without all the crazy plugins we can use now, so I try and keep it as simple as possible and only go to those newer tools if I've got a problem to solve or want to create a wacky effect.

    Yes I am thinking that; but if you use a compressor to bring up the lighter bits you'll bring up the noise floor too and make a noisier track, which can crowd your mix. In an ideal situation you have a perfect performance that you don't need to automate ;)
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  • Drew_TNBDDrew_TNBD Frets: 22445
    edited June 2017
    Parallel compression and room mics tends to be where I get the character for drums.
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  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7953
    edited June 2017
    Just a point for people who are less experienced, don't take it as a rule that compressors sound bad doing a lot of gain reduction, just trust your ears on it.  Staging compression is a legit technique but so is smashing the hell out of a compressor if that's getting the sound right.

    An 1176 for example, or one of the better emulations (Slate Blue is the best I've heard) sounds great on aggressive rock vocals with quite a lot of compression, 10db and above to taste is fine so long as it is sounding good.  

    If it starts to sound bad then back off and stage it with another comp... but there's nothing wrong with slamming compressors pretty hard if it is working out sonically.

    @Drew_TNBD have you tried the Waves Kramer Pie comp?  It is/was on sale for the same price $29 recently, I really like the vibe it has on drums and room mics.
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  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7953
    Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    When you stack what is your process, is it something like well this individual track needs it peaks tamed a bit as its pokey so you put a bit of compression on that track, then later on in that track's bus you do a little more to affect the whole bus etc or is it multiple compressors on a single track?

    I still find hearing subtle compression tricky sometimes so I think I have a tendency to go for fewer compressors doing more...and prob still ruin it sometimes :)

    How loud are you listening?

    I find it a lot easier to hear compression listening as quietly as it's possible for most of the time.  I find it makes it easier to hear when something starts poking out on top of everything else that way, or when it has too much dynamic range and keeps dropping out of listening range when not playing louder notes.

    With regards to staged compression I usually like to have the one that catches the fast peaks going first, then the one doing the overall smoothing second.  That way the slower/smoother compressor doesn't get bogged down by any stray high peaks.
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264


     In an ideal situation you have a perfect performance that you don't need to automate ;)

    Ho ho ho :)
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264
    Drew_TNBD said:
    I usually EQ before and after compression - compression can bring out the highs a bit too much, and too much low-end going into a compressor can make it pump too much. I'll also stack compressors, so instead of having one doing a lot of compression, I'll have two or even three doing little bits here and there.
    When you stack what is your process, is it something like well this individual track needs it peaks tamed a bit as its pokey so you put a bit of compression on that track, then later on in that track's bus you do a little more to affect the whole bus etc or is it multiple compressors on a single track?

    I still find hearing subtle compression tricky sometimes so I think I have a tendency to go for fewer compressors doing more...and prob still ruin it sometimes :)

    How loud are you listening?

    I find it a lot easier to hear compression listening as quietly as it's possible for most of the time.  I find it makes it easier to hear when something starts poking out on top of everything else that way, or when it has too much dynamic range and keeps dropping out of listening range when not playing louder notes.

    With regards to staged compression I usually like to have the one that catches the fast peaks going first, then the one doing the overall smoothing second.  That way the slower/smoother compressor doesn't get bogged down by any stray high peaks.
    Not crazy loud, these days I do prob 75% on headphones at moderate volume (ie/ I can listen for a few hours without becoming fatigued) I guess a little louder than TV watching volume. Although I'll find myself putting volume up and down a bit depending on what im doing.

    The other 25% is on monitors and again maximum of moderate volume, only happens when the baby isn't asleep and has to not be loud enough to be obnoxious in the house.

    I basically need to practice more but given time constraints will prob take a long time to really get used to listening with enough clarity.
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264


     In an ideal situation you have a perfect performance that you don't need to automate ;)

    Ho ho ho :)
    For reference I jsut finished some drum editing and posted up the results so the guys could look for glitches and the drummer said "fantastic thats my best ever performance".

    There are 1728 drum edits that I made by hand in that track :(
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  •  In an ideal situation you have a perfect performance that you don't need to automate ;)

    Ho ho ho :)
    For reference I jsut finished some drum editing and posted up the results so the guys could look for glitches and the drummer said "fantastic thats my best ever performance".

    There are 1728 drum edits that I made by hand in that track :(
    Time for a new drummer. That is too many edits.
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  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7953
    edited June 2017
    For reference I jsut finished some drum editing and posted up the results so the guys could look for glitches and the drummer said "fantastic thats my best ever performance".

    There are 1728 drum edits that I made by hand in that track
    Time for a new drummer. That is too many edits.

    Have you ever met an amateur metal drummer who plays like a robotic hell machine?

    Even the really good ones would need a lot of edits to grid every shell hit, if you're going for that aesthetic.  If you don't like that aesthetic that's a separate issue, but even shit hot pros who can play as much as they want often get edited. 

    @PolarityMan - not sure if you've listened to the URM interview with Machine - but he discusses working with Chris Adler from Lamb of God... who is for all intents and purposes a shit hot drummer.  He requests his drums get gridded and that all hits cut through... Machine gridded it, and individually normalised every shell hit so he could keep the original hits and maintain the natural variation in tones from the performance.

    I guess now guys seem to be using that SoundRadix drum leveler instead for a similar result
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264
    For reference I jsut finished some drum editing and posted up the results so the guys could look for glitches and the drummer said "fantastic thats my best ever performance".

    There are 1728 drum edits that I made by hand in that track
    Time for a new drummer. That is too many edits.

    Have you ever met an amateur metal drummer who plays like a robotic hell machine?

    Even the really good ones would need a lot of edits to grid every shell hit, if you're going for that aesthetic.  If you don't like that aesthetic that's a separate issue, but even shit hot pros who can play as much as they want often get edited. 

    @PolarityMan - not sure if you've listened to the URM interview with Machine - but he discusses working with Chris Adler from Lamb of God... who is for all intents and purposes a shit hot drummer.  He requests his drums get gridded and that all hits cut through... Machine gridded it, and individually normalised every shell hit so he could keep the original hits and maintain the natural variation in tones from the performance.

    I guess now guys seem to be using that SoundRadix drum leveler instead for a similar result
    Yeah Ive been working through URM stuff. It would prob be quicker with beat detective but the reaper SXS scripts seem pretty useless which is why I had to do it all by hand.

    The other issue is of course that once you move one hit it make the next one sound wrong and before you know it you've had to move most of the whole bar.
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  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 10281
    When I was in 2020 I used a lot of Beat Detective and in general it worked well enough for me. I generally grouped all the drums and edited across all tracks at once. Very quick way of editing 

    In the other mix room though there was a couple of very capable producers who specialised in very heavy material and editing drums to perfection was their thing. Generally when tracking they would only allow the drummer to hit the snare and cymbals, then that would be edited into perfection and the kick drawn in my hand. It could take days to get right and it used to drive me mad just hearing it from the kitchen. Christ I don't miss hearing that at all !
    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7953
    PolarityMan said:

    Yeah Ive been working through URM stuff. It would prob be quicker with beat detective but the reaper SXS scripts seem pretty useless which is why I had to do it all by hand.

    The other issue is of course that once you move one hit it make the next one sound wrong and before you know it you've had to move most of the whole bar.
    I do it by hand via slip and cross fade.  I wouldn't trust an automated process for anything complex, plus I'd like to choose whether or not I want to keep the original feel or not.  The one good thing with drums is you can eyeball it more so than any melodic instrument, so you can edit a larger chunk before you need to re-listen to it.

    Anyway with regards to your issue I keep a folder full of originals, muted.  Then on the tracks I'm editing I split by section, so that as necessary I can leave a whole section alone if it doesn't need any work, plus it means I'm only moving the section I'm working on and not the whole track.  If I ever need to A/B I can just listen to the raw timing version to see if it's actually better or not, and can easily copy paste raw timing bars back into the edited version as necessary.


    Danny1969 said:
    When I was in 2020 I used a lot of Beat Detective and in general it worked well enough for me. I generally grouped all the drums and edited across all tracks at once. Very quick way of editing 

    In the other mix room though there was a couple of very capable producers who specialised in very heavy material and editing drums to perfection was their thing. Generally when tracking they would only allow the drummer to hit the snare and cymbals, then that would be edited into perfection and the kick drawn in my hand. It could take days to get right and it used to drive me mad just hearing it from the kitchen. Christ I don't miss hearing that at all !

    Generally it is the kick that causes the issues, and it is also the easiest thing to replace.  When the foot and hand aren't hitting at the same time there's only so much you can do with any time stretch, or cut/slip/fade method before it ruins the transients.  

    Half the time I think it's better to just copy paste a hit from elsewhere if there's no option to replay it.  Or just leave it in every now and then, putting the snare in time as priority.
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264
    edited June 2017
    I originally wasnt interested in the plugin in the OP but then I saw their summer sale and changed my mind and now its gone .... boo
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  • guitarfishbayguitarfishbay Frets: 7953
    Waves sales go in cycles.  If you wait long enough pretty much all of their plugins end up cheap again at some point anyway.  It's 4th July soon so I guess it's likely there'll be additional sales put on by some companies then too, Waves has done it in the past
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 7264
    Cheers, only piqued my interest again because someone mentioned it on URM :)
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