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Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby The Elf » Wed Aug 21, 2019 4:48 pm

MOF wrote:Are we really talking about compression here and not tonal balance?
I'm thinking along similar lines.

I'm a bit of an SSL devotee, I'll admit, but by any standards there's nothing lacking in the sound of SSL's venerable mixers. And SSL's compression has been *the* sound of three decades of production.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby Sam Inglis » Wed Aug 21, 2019 4:59 pm

Yes, oddly enough I'd say that the one constant among the list of albums you've quoted is that none of them sounds very compressed!
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby Random Guitarist » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:30 pm

Interesting range of thoughts on So.

To me it's a difficult one, it is really well mixed and produced in that I can hear everything distinctly, but there is something 'off' about the sound to me when I compare it to recordings I really like. Given the comment about all analogue I googled a bit. . .

There is an interesting bit here https://forums.stevehoffman.tv/threads/ ... ly.187166/

One part that stands out to me is :

"The process of getting stuff back from slave reel number five to master reel number one involved sometimes lining up the 2-inches and flying between them manually, bit by bit. In July we got an AMS sampler with 14 seconds of sampling time, so we could actually sample four or five measures of music and fly it in that way, which helped. By September we had everything over to the 32-track machine."

To be fair my Cd is from the time the album was released so it will have the faults of early digital media, so maybe remasters sound better.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby DC-Choppah » Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:41 am

Tape?

I believe all the records listed used tape for multi-tracking and mixing down, etc.

A good tape emulator?


I always note that I like the sound of my old tapes played on a quality machine. Has a certain sound.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby James Perrett » Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:09 am

Random Guitarist wrote:One part that stands out to me is :

"The process of getting stuff back from slave reel number five to master reel number one involved sometimes lining up the 2-inches and flying between them manually, bit by bit. In July we got an AMS sampler with 14 seconds of sampling time, so we could actually sample four or five measures of music and fly it in that way, which helped. By September we had everything over to the 32-track machine."

If you read the whole article you will see that they ended up running the two analogue machines in sync with the digital machine for the mixdown as some instruments sounded better coming directly from the analogue tapes. I'm not sure whether they mentioned what it was mixed down to.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby Arpangel » Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:18 am

DC-Choppah wrote:Tape?

I believe all the records listed used tape for multi-tracking and mixing down, etc.

A good tape emulator?


I always note that I like the sound of my old tapes played on a quality machine. Has a certain sound.

Yes, I'm thinking that too.
"So" is a great album, but the recording quallity makes me cringe, the worst track sonically is "Sledge Hammer" hard as glass, and compressed to hell. If it was recorded on analogue fine, it must be other things that make it sound bad.
A lot of what I like about the sound I'm trying to describe is in the bass, a very soft compressed sound. I don't want this thread to become too animated about this, I'm not doing a great job of describing what I'm hearing, I'll probably listen to a few things and stumble over it by accident.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby Random Guitarist » Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:57 am

James Perrett wrote:If you read the whole article you will see that they ended up running the two analogue machines in sync with the digital machine for the mixdown as some instruments sounded better coming directly from the analogue tapes. I'm not sure whether they mentioned what it was mixed down to.

Yes I got that, to me the point is that it clearly wasn't a purely tape endeavour and there were digital things going on in the background, even if they were not visible in the documentary.

Don't get me wrong, I am not anti-digital in any way. I have no desire to return to that format. But I would agree with Arpangel that there are some recordings that just have a wonderful sound to them, and So is not one of them. Great songs, great playing and arrangements, great production, but somehow the final sound is not to my taste.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby DC-Choppah » Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:37 pm

Tony Levin describes the Sledgehammer bass track

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwVDIkC2NMw


Listen how highly compressed that sound is because of the Boss octaver OC-2 adds a synthesized sound that has a constant level.

And the pick! Now I hear it. Very unusual. Very distinctive part of the sound of that record.
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Re: Searching for that dreamy creamy compressor?

Postby Martin Walker » Thu Aug 22, 2019 8:15 pm

DC-Choppah wrote:Tony Levin describes the Sledgehammer bass track

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZwVDIkC2NMw


Listen how highly compressed that sound is because of the Boss octaver OC-2 adds a synthesized sound that has a constant level.

And the pick! Now I hear it. Very unusual. Very distinctive part of the sound of that record.

Nice sound! I agree about the pick, although I must admit I was expecting its sharp attack to perhaps throw the octaver.


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