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If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon May 13, 2019 11:06 am

:bouncy:
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Mon May 13, 2019 11:08 am

It is all complete nonsense, and anyone who really knows what they are doing can deliver great results with whatever comes to hand

Thanks Hugh. That might just be my favourite post of all time. :bouncy: I think I will print it out (in an ecologically caring and sensitive way of course) and stick it to my computer monitor to be re-read every time I consider a new plugin (especially ones with a faux-retro GUI).

Re your Sig, how about Quasher of Unfounded and Mystic Nonsense
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Watchmaker » Mon May 13, 2019 11:42 am

I dislike the LA2A and 1176 compressors myself - at least the emulations, they never sit right to my ears. and I've wasted more mixing time under the delusion that I needed compression at all in the digital realm. and...I think a lot of the sound people are looking to get from squishing the dynamics is really tape compression and those plugins are variously useful. I have one template with every track going through a 2" Otari emulation then into an ATR 2 track and it sounds great on skiffle and ska but not much else :-)

But to the question, I am now using the native Console 1 SSL compression most often, both for ease of use and because it compresses without feeling the need to add a bunch of color.
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby The Elf » Mon May 13, 2019 12:04 pm

I feel it necessary to point out that I wasn't being critical of this thread, or anyone posting here! This thread represents a reasonable question, and reasonable answers.

But I must also point out that what I specifically said was "As long as a compressor has sufficient attack and release ranges, and does the maths properly then anything else is not about compression.

If a compressor plug-in chooses to model other aspects of a compressor, such as distortion or other non-linearities, then that is not about compression. It may sound nice to certain ears, but that a different story.

So much nonsense around - it's nice to hear some zero-BS words for a change!
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Bob Bickerton » Mon May 13, 2019 12:06 pm

Dr Huge Longjohns wrote:........And when a pro on the forum accuses you of being stupid for merely raising the topic, your confidence in your sonic choices is, of course, further undermined.

Errrr.... if you’re referring to my post - apologies if it caused offence. To be clear, there was no accusation stupidity, just a nudge at your stated prescription on restrictive answers!

I agree there’s a huge degree of nonsense surrounding such things. However the three compressor emulations I use allow me to get the results I need with minimal knob twiddling. Yes, I’d probably get similar results using Logic’s built in compressor, but it would take more time and I’d need to engage my brain....... something which I try to avoid at all costs.....

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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby blinddrew » Mon May 13, 2019 12:41 pm

Bob Bickerton wrote: but it would take more time and I’d need to engage my brain.......
I don't think this can really be stated enough.
Most compressors will do the same job for the bulk of their useable range. In 90% of cases the 'best' compressor is the one that gets the job done quickest - which will probably be the one you use most - so you can move onto the next job.
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby CS70 » Mon May 13, 2019 12:54 pm

The Elf wrote:If a compressor plug-in chooses to model other aspects of a compressor, such as distortion or other non-linearities, then that is not about compression. It may sound nice to certain ears, but that a different story.

Indeed. it's like putting the Pultec on a track, you don't necessarily do it because you want to equalize anything :D
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby OneWorld » Mon May 13, 2019 1:00 pm

Humble Bee wrote:DC1A from Klanghelm tends to get a lot of use. East to use. Sounds great. And is free.

I am in the process of quitting the UAD platform and go native but their LA2A and Fairchild renderings are fantastic and I have used them a lot in the past.

When I don’t need ‘character’ I tend to use the standard ones that come with Logic and Reaper.

:thumbup:

I too am sort of invested in their (UAD) products, including the hardware, and like yourself have come across the Klanghelm products and am convinced
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Kwackman » Mon May 13, 2019 1:25 pm

In the first "proper" music studio I was in, the choice of compressor was "in" or "out".
In my first home studio for many years, it was the same choice!
I now have more software compressors with more controls than I can easily count.
Do my mixes sound better?
Have a guess!
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Mon May 13, 2019 2:18 pm

I didn't even know what a compressor was when I had my first cassette 4-track. I had rudimentary eq on it (or tone controls as we used to call it, still a more meaningful description than 'equalisation') plus an outboard spring reverb.
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Tue May 14, 2019 11:32 am

Bob Bickerton wrote:However the three compressor emulations I use allow me to get the results I need with minimal knob twiddling. Yes, I’d probably get similar results using Logic’s built in compressor, but it would take more time and I’d need to engage my brain....... something which I try to avoid at all costs.....

(Italics added by me).

That hits the nail on the head for me and it's why I like the LA-2A and -3A so much. The UAD package comes with four (count them) different emulations of the LA-2A. At least, they say they're different and certainly they each come with a different set of emulated nicotine stains but I have to confess I've never been able to hear a difference between them. Still love them as compressors because they make the job so easy.

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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Ramirez » Wed May 15, 2019 1:42 pm

For me, currently, its the stock Softube Console 1 compressor on individual channels, because that's what's always in front of me, and usually IK's T-Racks Dyna-Mu on the master bus.

I'm usually in the same room as a couple of real 1176, two LA3As and an Avalon optical stereo compressor... but I don't bother patching them in all that often, such is the convenience of the plugins! Its the recall/portability that does it, as I rarely use the same room for the duration of a project.
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Wed May 15, 2019 4:48 pm

That hits the nail on the head for me and it's why I like the LA-2A and -3A so much.

Exactly my reason for gravitating towards the DBX160. And I'll be revisiting the Klanghelm one to after this thread reminded me I have it somewhere.
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby Darren Lynch » Wed May 15, 2019 5:01 pm

I greatly enjoy questions like this. I made my first records in a studio where the only compressors available where two of the cheapest Drawmers. That's 4xmono or 2xmono and the mixbus. You must choose wisely. Nowadays, as Bob B. observes, it's all rather moot considering the choice available. In the spirit of the OP, I'd still plump for the stock Compressor in Logic 8. Money saved on other compressor plugins could go on the incontinence pads I have buy for my aged system.

The potential for the stock Logic comp to match any paid-for compressor up to a level that will not affect sales is demonstrated by some SSL bus comp presents knocked up by the very able Lagerfeldt over on Gearsltuz. Dunno if they sound like the genuine article, but they do sound bloody good.
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Re: If you could only have one compressor plugin to use for everything, what would it be?

Postby desmond » Wed May 15, 2019 10:39 pm

With all this talk about using any old available compressors, I just dug out my old Behringer Composer from the roof, which I haven't used for many years, stuck it on an insert on a drum track in Logic, and tried some tasteful drum smashing, rock 1176-style - and I was pleasantly surprised.

It's not an 1176, and the behaviour is not as complex, but it wasn't a bad sound at all.

I rigged up a Logic Compressor Studio VCA plugin with similar settings to the Berry, and they actually sounded *very* similar.

Makes me want to hang on to it now. I do need to fix one of the input meters, though, it's dead...
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