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No compressors at all

Paulo · 12 · 7033
 

Offline Paulo

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Most prolly one of the first plugs I have on the drums and vocals is a compressor, not too tight but they're there...

... Bruce Swedien, great mixer and producer, sais that he just don't use compressor, they distroy the sound...

... The truth is that this guy is responsible for the sound of huge hits including Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and they sound amazingly good... Whitout any compressor?

... Now go wonder!!!

I'm gonna try for sure.
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Offline stoman

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That's a common misinterpretation of Swedien's statement, Paulo. Of course he does use compressors, he just does not overdo it.

He does not use a compressor on the bus or on drums, for example.
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Offline Paulo

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If he still records through tape machines, maybe he doesn't need compressors.
Live the best you can 'cause you're gonna be dead for a long time.
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Paulo Gomes


Offline rightonthemark

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maybe he's not using a compressor on individual tracks but does on a group bus for glue & maybe the master.
that would certainly help keep from over compressing any individual track/instrument.
you know rather than compress overheads, the kick & snare & then hit them with another compressor on the drum bus & then again on the master.
just a thought.
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Offline stoman

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He does it the other way 'round: He uses compressors (to a certain degree) on individual tracks, like everybody does, but he avoids them on busses.

I tend to agree with him - I avoid bus compression, too, whenever I can. But it isn't a dogma for me.

Compressors are a useful tool, they just aren't used in a musical way by many people (especially nowadays). They were never designed as a tool for loudness. A compressor's purpose is to control dynamics, not get rid of them.

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Offline Paulo

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Well, that's funny because I heard him saying several times in the same interview that he does not use them.
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Paulo Gomes


Offline stoman

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Yes, he says he avoids them wherever he can, and he is totally right - you can get away with very little compression, or even with no compression at all in some cases, if the material is recorded decently (which is almost never the case with homerecorded stuff, btw). You can ride the volume faders instead, if you want to control the gain, and thus preserve the natural feel (transients).

Mr. Swedien admits that he breaks the "rules" for the sake of sound though - in other words, he will do whatever it takes to get there. Compressors just won't be his first choice.

But, to be honest: Even though I agree with him about modern music being terribly over-compressed and about compressors being misused for all the wrong reasons, I don't really care what he (or anybody else) thinks, says or does. It does not matter how you achieve the goal as long as you do achieve it. There are always many ways to get there, and compression can be used for much more than just volume control. It's also a sound shaping tool, and you limit yourself if you refuse them by principle.



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Offline Paulo

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I don't refuse anything, Steffen, I hear, read and try things but, old farts, more and more make sense to me.

The loudness war is a lost war ...

The last 2 mixes I did, there's just little global compression and they sound great to my ears like the good sounding records that made me smile in the 70's and 80's.
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Offline stoman

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By "you" I did not mean "you, Paulo", Paulo. :) ;)

Yes, I prefer music with lesser compression, too - always have. I just don't agree that compressors are "for kids" or "destroy the sound" in general. That's ridiculous rubbish. Compressors are a valid tool just like any other, they do not destroy anything - the people who misuse them do.

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Offline Paulo

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 ;D
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Offline CosmicDolphin

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People destroy the sound..not compressors  >:D
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Offline Gerk

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People destroy the sound..not compressors  >:D

Very true.

If he indeed doesn't use any compressors and he did thriller then he owes a lot to whoever did the master of Thriller because they fixed a lot of stuff for him!  >:D

The biggest issue with compressors is misuse (i.e. squeezing the crap out of things) and/or brickwalling things to death.  When used correctly compressors can be magical, even when you're not even compressing anything!  *hugs his UAD compressor collection*


 

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