Patching Up A Compressor

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Babaluma

Patching Up A Compressor

Post by Babaluma »

I realised most of my info on this was posted over on modularsynth.net, but it would be cool to have it discussed here also.

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I was playing with the patch again the other day, and achieved some stellar results. It sounds better than my Chandler Germs Comps on some things, and is especially good at that "thwippy/thwappy" sound I associate with an 1176.

Relevant info and sound files available here:

Patching Up A Compressor
Last edited by Babaluma on Fri Jul 10, 2009 4:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Luka
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Post by Luka »

if it is just gating when the evelope is hit with larger peaks isnt that limiting not compression?

i would think adding an amp at the end of your chain would allow you to amplify the floor and still squash the peaks
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consumed
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Post by consumed »

thanks for putting that back up, its a fantastic patch! i was just thinking on this a day or so ago

its more of an effect instead of the typical squashing of some comp/limiters
you're following the amplitude of an incoming signal,
but inverting it. so that the filter freq is pulled DOWN as the amplitude is higher
Last edited by consumed on Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

Luka wrote:if it is just gating when the evelope is hit with larger peaks isnt that limiting not compression?

i would think adding an amp at the end of your chain would allow you to amplify the floor and still squash the peaks
it's not just gating on/off, the amount the gain reduction element (e.g. a VCA, or here, a borg2 filter acting as a low pass gate) reduces the gain is directly proportional (and inverted) to the input level.

remember there is no "envelope" module in this patch, only an envelope follower (the VCS patched as such).

as for limiting versus compression, they are both the same. a limiter is just a compressor with a very high ratio. in my patch you can't really control the ratio. you can alter the threshold by how hard you drive the patch. this "thresholdless" type can be found in an 1176 or chandler germ comp.

this patch does tend to darken things up a bit, i am sure it would be different/cleaner if you substituted a VCA for the low pass gate. try it and see! it does also pull down the volume somewhat, but like you say, that is what make up gain is for, and i can do that within the modular itself, or with an external pre.
Last edited by Babaluma on Fri Jul 10, 2009 4:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

consumed wrote:thanks for putting that back up, its a fantastic patch! i was just thinking on this a day or so ago

its more of an effect instead of the typical squashing of some comp/limiters
you're following the amplitude of an incoming signal,
but inverting it. so that the filter freq is pulled DOWN as the amplitude is higher
thanks dude!

if you listen to my sound files or patch it up yourself, you can hear some gorgeous sweet spots, especially on percussive material. i'd been looking for that uber-pillowy ringo "for the benefit of mr. kite" kick drum sound for ages, couldn't achieve it with my chandlers, but it's easy to get with this patch.

you're right it's much more of an effect comp sound, very obvious, i wouldn't really want to use it for transparent compression, but transparent compression is boring unless you are a mastering engineer!

again, trying to get it to work with a clean, low noise VCA might be better for more transparent work.
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

of course the real beauty with this patch is the tweakability you have over the attack and decay times via the VCS. they are both individually voltage controllable and you can choose linear, log or exponential slopes (or anywhere in between) independently for the attack and release. find me an off the shelf compressor that can do that!

for finer control set the rise and fall in the correct ballpark, and run a steady 5-10V signal through an attenuator or two. this will give you extremely fine control over the attack or release times, which is exactly what you need when tweaking it to the tempo of the track etc.

i think the other thing that turns this into such a star patch is the way the borg2 responds to the CV from the VCS. the built in decay of the vactrols just adds something truly wonderful.
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rico loverde
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Post by rico loverde »

awesome post!!!!!!!!!
works for Darkplace Manufacturing
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

zombie thread!

:lol:

yeah, probably my favourite patch of all time!
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tony d
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Post by tony d »

Mine also.I have plans to build a standalone box specifically inspired by this patch.
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

Yep, sounds cool. Would be pretty easy to create a stereo linked version too. Like a Mutator on steroids!
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Post by Brownian Lotion »

Found this thread via search and interlinked posts. This forum kicks ass.

Reckon i can patch this with a vca, a106-5 abd a maths... Can anyone recommend a good envelope follower or should i stick with the maths?
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chinard
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Post by chinard »

well the maths should be able to do the job of envelope follower and inversion all in one place.

Just curious about why a borg filter was specified here.
any advantages over a regular vca?
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tIB
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Post by tIB »

^ it does, I did this the other day with maths and qmmg.

EDIT: Oh and patching the negative slopes into channels 2 and 3 of the maths, inverting them so they are positive and then patching them to the qmmg's feedback control input was giving interesting results.
Last edited by tIB on Sat Dec 04, 2010 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
confusional
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Post by confusional »

Redacted.
Last edited by confusional on Sat Apr 23, 2011 9:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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wintermute
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Post by wintermute »

Have you thought about applying that patch to parallel compression?

Eg. Taking that 606, running it through a desk, and using an aux output as the input for the modular.

The benefits of parallel compression shouldn't be overlooked. Whenever you thought "I wonder how they got that punchy drum sound" it's often been through parallel compression.
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

yeah, i've thought about it, but i usually use my chandler germ comps for parallel compression. if i was going to do it in the modular, i'd just stick a mixer after the patch and feed it the output of the comp patch plus the original input sound source. the you could mix and match to taste within the modular itself (no need for an external mixer).

you're right though, parallel/new york compression can sound really great on drums. don't normally like it on a whole mix though.

...i need to get a stereo linked version of this patch up and running...

(mult the L and R signals. feed one to a mixer balanced 50/50, use that combined signal to feed the envelope detector. feed the other multed L and R signal through two identical VCAs/LPGs but get the CV inputs of both fed by the combined signal).
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wintermute
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Post by wintermute »

Babaluma wrote:don't normally like it on a whole mix though.

It's great for mastering, as you can place any sort of limiter you want after the chain, so neither are working too hard. It will increase the noisefloor, but careful selection of which audiobands to compress can help.

Wouldn't you want the mixer panned hard for a stereo version?
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

I've mastered about an album a month (plus loads of single tracks) over the last year, and have used parallel compression on maybe 5% of them or less. I often find it does weird things to the mix levels and stereo width, and way more often find I prefer "regular" compression on the whole mix. I like to use parallel compression more on things like the drum buss, where you can really really mash it and then bring a little of the dry sound back in to add life/dynamics again.

Yep, for that compressor patch in stereo you'd definitely want the two final outputs going into two separate audio channels (either on an external mixer or directly into a d.i. or interface), otherwise it wouldn't be stereo!
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M78
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Post by M78 »

i know it's been mentioned before but i would love to know how to get this to work with maths + other modules...has anyone tried that?
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

theoretically it should work with any env follower + vca(or lpg), but it can be a very "tweaky" patch to get just right.

not tried it with a maths, but when i used the envelope follower on the blacet I/O module, and a regular blacet vca, i got less than stellar results, but again, i just may not have spent enough time hunting down the minuscule sweet spot.
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Post by cillianjohn »

I got side chaining to work with my maths today.

Bass drum sound (lfo to gate) coming from the Dark Energy which is the signal to be followed. This signal is fed into channel 3 to provide some gain. Ch.3 out to channel 4. Set rise to 12 o'clock. Tweak fall for varying responses. Then take the Or output to your VCA of Filter cutoff. (In my case both as I was using an LPG). The audio it is side chaining is a sine drone from my ulfo.

Babaluma wasn't kidding about the tweakiness of this patch.

Ps. How to patch maths as an envelope follower is described excellently in the maths manual which I used to help me with this patch.

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cillianjohn
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Post by cillianjohn »

^^Sorry about the shaky phone-cam.
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JJ
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Post by JJ »

Awesome thread, anymore cool findings since the last post?
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numan7
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Post by numan7 »

thanks for reminding me bout bab's aweseome notes! :hail:

here is my desktop (until this patch is so burned-in that i don't need any reminder :hihi: ) !

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once again, thanks :) !

cheers,
7n7
"the ordinary will ignore whatever they cannot explain as if nothing ever happened. and everything remains the same again..."
Babaluma

Post by Babaluma »

that rules! ;)

:lol: :lol: :lol:
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