compression

what do they mean

Downloaded the recent version of n-track and noticed these pre-set compression functions (“soft-knee”, “noise gate”, etc.).

what is each setting recommended for ? are there ones that are best used for vocals or drums or guitars?

when selecting are they applied to whole song (all tracks?) or just the one being screwed around with?

cheers!

(Trailer Park Boys the movie coming out with Rush as background soundtrack…woohoo!)

This article has helped a lot of people - myself included - to understand how a compressor works, what it’s for, and what all the controls and thingumabubs do…

This link is to the PDF version of the article - it may be found in HTML somewhere…

Jezar: How to use a compressor

regards, NIls

Right, Nils – unfortunately, it’s not much of a help to learn n-Track’s graphic compressor.

But it really is the best way to use a compressor, especially to learn how to use one. I recommend using PeakCompressor (google to find it) as a great learning compressor, using Jeezar’s method. Once you get a handle on it, then n-Track’s graphic one is quite nice.

You use a noise gate for parts where there is silence between phrases and you want to kill the background noise in the tracks. Vocal parts are typically this way, but any part can be. If there’s never any silence in a track, a noise gate is unnecessary.

Soft Knees are just a technique that helps avoid some complaints by well ear-trained and sensitive folks that compressors can sometimes be too abrupt with adjustments. With n-Track’s graphic compressor you just draw in rounded knees. PeakCompressor has a button to turn it on or off. I usually leave it on, but sometimes it sounds better off with very peaky material like disco, thumb & snap bass, & drums.

Here’s my article on compression for newbies. Jeezar’s article is technically better but some folks find mine easier to start with.