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Busing guitars to a compressor.

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by rocker73, Apr 30, 2012.

  1. rocker73

    rocker73 Active Member

    If i am sending my guitars to an aux channel with a compressor pluggin on via a bus should my Aux Effects channel be a stereo channel or a mono
    channel? If stereo and i have 2 mono guitars should each guitar be sent on a differnet bus to the stereo Aux with compressor on and then route that Aux to the group stereo bus?

    i.e. guitar 1 being sent on say bus 5 and guitar 2 being sent on bus 6 with the in on the effects Aux channel with the compressor pluggin set to Bus 5-6 and its OUT sent to say bus 3-4 and the stereo guitar group IN set to Bus 3-4?

    Should i also mix in the DI'd signal to the compressor to give a bit of clarity and tone to the stereo guitar mix?

    ANy help much appreciated
  2. mberry593

    mberry593 Active Member

    I am not sure what you are asking. This isn't your fault. It is because "AUX" means different things at different times. OTB people talk about an AUX bus on their mixers. ITB people use it as a type of internal input. Since your sig notes that you are running PT 6, I'm going to assume that you are talking about a using two audio inputs for your guitars and busing them to an AUX input for the compression.

    That is a little unusual but there isn't anything wrong with it if that is what you want to do. The compressor's action will be based on both guitars. It is more usual to put your compressors on the individual guitars. You can still bus them to an AUX or submaster if you want to have one control for the guitars.

    But that wasn't your question. You wanted to discuss stereo/vs. mono on the AUX input. What you have set up is your guitars on the extreme left & right but the compressors action is taken from the sum (I think). So, considering how you have set this up, IMO (and it is OPINION - you can do anything you want) it might be best to stay with mono in the AUX.

    The second question about mixing some straight with the compressed signal can't be answered. It is OK to do anything you want. You will be able to find supporters either way. But, let me say something about it. Often people are disappointed with compressed signals because they loose some impact. If that is what is bothering you, try to back off a little on the attack time. This allows the initial transient to get through but still gives you the benefit of the compression on the rest of the note. This may accomplish what you want without the complexity of mixing the wet/dry signals.

    Good luck. Experiment. Have fun.
  3. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    I'll add that his thought of using a stereo compressor on multiple mono sources has a purpose -
    If used gently, it can add some "glue" and help the guitar tracks function sonically as a unit.

    If the individual guitar track needs compression to get the sound you want, do it on the individual track.
    If you're looking to make a whole of parts and add cohesion, busing the tracks to a stereo comp might do the trick.
    But in this case, I'd make a GROUP/AUX channel (i.e. "Guitars") versus an AUX/FX channel (i.e. "Guitar Comp channel").
    The latter would be parallel compression, which also has its uses, and may well be what you want to do (I'm not sure).

    Experiment with all three. You'll not only like get the result you want in the end, you'll learn something about each technique along the way.
  4. rocker73

    rocker73 Active Member

    I usually send all the rhythm guitars to one stereo group master and put the compressor on that and then EQ so am not running a compressor on each channel strip, i usually record 1 guitar in mono and then double it up, i also find adding a bit of the DI'd signal helps the colouring a bit.

    Lead guitars have there own Stereo group as the compresor settings will need to be different and also the EQ different, same again with Bass guitars.
    I find this works quite well in terms of running less software plug-insand organisation, however i was thinking about trying to bus things to Aux channels.
  5. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    Compressing groups sounds totally, utterly, completely different from compressing individual tracks. It's a useful technique but not in any way a replacement for compressing individually.

    Using the sends to route things to an aux channel with compression while also routing them to the main bus is parallel compression, another useful technique that sounds different from compressing tracks or groups. You should do these things for sonic reasons, not for organizational reasons.

    Hopefully by "doubling up" you mean you're recording a second guitar track and not just copying the first one.
  6. gdoubleyou

    gdoubleyou Well-Known Member

    I compress each guitar track separately because, I want the compressor to react and compress that individual track.

    I may bus reverb or delay, but not dynamic processors.

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