Compression before Mastering

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by vagelis, Oct 28, 2002.

  1. vagelis

    vagelis Guest

    Is it a must?
     
  2. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Nothing is a must. I've done many projects that I don't run through a compressor at all, sometimes I try and uncompress, sometimes I compress. It depends on what is needed to achieve what you want and what the client wants.
     
  3. joe lambert

    joe lambert Distinguished Member

    What I tell engineers who ask this is to use the compression like any other tool. Make it sound as good as you can. If you are questioning if its to much do a 2nd pass without it and bring them both to the mastering session. It's normal for me to get a mix with a couple versions to listen to and work with to see which one sounds the best.
     
  4. Don Grossinger

    Don Grossinger Distinguished past mastering moderator Active Member

    I agree with both Joe & Michael. It's great to have choices. I wish more clients gave us options.

    Also, look out for the dreaded over normalized mix. Let all that stuff go till the last possible step.

    Compression is not mandatory in vinyl cutting either: just another subjective tool.
     
  5. vagelis

    vagelis Guest

    Would you ever use a tool like L-2 for a precompression before mastering?
     
  6. Doug Milton

    Doug Milton Active Member

    Compression is like salt. You can always add more. And just like cooking, it's hard to remove the taste of too much salt without whacking out your recipe. Compression, used correctly, is a wonderful thing. It drives me crazy to hear songs where the verses are louder than the choruses. It happens all the time and is a result of not compressing correctly. Compression should be the velvet gloved hand, gently squeezing things together, not the iron fist that smashes everything into a block like a trash compactor.

    To compress, to not compress, where to put it in the signal flow, individual channels, across the stereo bus? The only rule is, there are (almost) no rules…, but everything in moderation.
     
  7. audiowkstation

    audiowkstation Active Member

    "Compression is like salt. You can always add more. And just like cooking, it's hard to remove the taste of too much salt without whacking out your recipe."

    So right,

    Call me Potatos then!!! Boiled, never fried!!!
     
  8. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Compression on individual tracks is a must most of the time in pop production. Use compression to tame levels and help bring elements to the front of a mix. But never, never, never, on the 2-bus. Leave that for mastering! …….or I'll kill you a millwon times",..
    ......Fats
    :D
     
  9. audiowkstation

    audiowkstation Active Member

    That's RIGHT!

    Hey fats, you want to hear what I am about, go to cretique. I bought a horrible sounding CD of Joe Jackson and I spruced it up quite a bit (I like the guys tunes) . I put an intro snip there. Now that is how digital can sound.

    It was compresed (breathing compressed) it had no punch, it had no bass, kick or otherwise. It sucked. The double cowbell licks were from the CD, they ^#$%ed it that way. I could not kill those. I did tighten it up. I did this from mermory of how it use to sound on the vinyl, ran to 32/384K, decompressed it, put it back together and here it is.

    D load and dig it.

    (Dead Link Removed)
     

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