Harsh high end from compression?

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by EricWatkins, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. EricWatkins

    EricWatkins Active Member

    I'm just wondering if anyone else has come across this or can explain to me why I am noticing this. I am mixing a pop country song. I have compressor plugs all over the place like on individual drums, drum buses, vocals, bass, etc. I also have compression at the main stereo bus and then a limiter also. First of all, all these plugins are the ones that come with Cubase 4 as I dont really own any high-end compressors. Most of them have presets for their specific purposes so I've been using a lot of the presets and then tweaking from there. I'm trying to watch all my gain staging carefully and making sure that I dont clip anywhere. I'm using -3 as my top range anywhere but some of the compressors dont really tell you how hot their output is in db so I just go by the track output.

    So my point is that, by the time I get to the final output, it seems kind of harsh sometimes in the high end. Almost as if I need to do a steep low pass filter at around 18k or so. Anyone have an idea where I might make adjustments to help this? I'd like to post an example but it's original material that's not mine so I really shouldnt. Thanks,

  2. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Compression can actually keep in play a harsh tonality when put in place.

    Be aware of the tonality before compressing and repair anything out of order before you apply these things.

    Try your mix without any help whatsoever and proceed from there.
  3. EricWatkins

    EricWatkins Active Member

    Thanks Dave. I'll try peeling back a couple of layers and see what I find.
  4. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Well-Known Member

    Compressing and already compressed signal is a sure way to have it start to sound NASTY.

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