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MultiBand Compressor settings

I know this is a loaded question. Is there a starting point for settings using Multi Band compression?
Typical Attack and release settings for Low band Mid band high band etc.
I know it varies but, is there a good starting point?



Alécio Costa Mon, 10/06/2003 - 19:11
Just to help our friend, PSP Vintage Warmer and TC MAster X are fine multiband compressors.

Nothing like a real pro guy ( Michael, Don, Joe, Doug and many others) tweaking their very nice high end tools to get the best of your mixes.

You need to take care of acoustics, monitor placement, etc. A fresh pair/trained ears is a must to listen to your mixes.

If you plan to release your job comercially, I advise you saving money and picking one of these very nice pros.

If you want to practice and develop your skills, why not start with a multiband plug-in?
Fell free to contact me PM for more help.
Nice week

mjones4th Mon, 10/06/2003 - 21:01
First task is to set the bands. Class dismissed, tune in next week for the rest.

No just kidding.

Set the bass band to capture, you guessed it. Play with it until you get some low mid frequencies in it and then pull back.

The Low Mid Band should capture just that, up to around 3kHz or so,

same for the high mid.

the 'air' band should capture the extreme highs, try starting around 10k

As far as threshold settings, etc. that is really dependant on the program material. It will vary for each song. try slower attacks and releases for bass and faster settings as you go up the scale.

Solo each band and make your adjustments while you're just listening to that channel. Then check its effects on neighboring channels.

And remember, multibands are potentially dangerous. A little goes a long way.

I use the Waves C4, but I don't have any experience with others.

king mitz

Alécio Costa Mon, 10/06/2003 - 21:56
Mitz is right. With the Vintage Warmer, there are nice pre-sets you can start as a sketch. I would advice your to include in your junior cahian, supossing you are recording at 44.1k/24 bits the following:

(A) a nice eq plug with reasonable Q > (B) your multiband comp plug > (C) a dither plug > (D)some rta plug


(A): Q6, Q10, Ren Eq, Lin Eq, D2, SOny Oxf
(B): Vintage Warmer, C4, M2000, Tc Master X, T-Racks, LinEQ Comp
(C): dither, Power dither, UV22
(D) : PAZ



AudioGaff Mon, 10/06/2003 - 23:12
Originally posted by Alécio Costa - Brazil:
Audiogaaf, it is really funny. I mentioned the very same thing your wrote here at the EQ forum and you said I did not know what I was talking about.
Seems we finnally agree bud?
No, If your refer to a previous posting you need get the facts straight. Here is what you said and below that is what I said.

Originally posted by Alécio Costa - Brazil:
When I bought the original TC Master X 3 Band, it was said that the Finalizer was better.
Then, I upgraded to TC MAster X 5 band, which is the plug version of DBmax.
Do not think that more bands is better. The multibands always **** some of the mix balance of yours. Thanks
Originally posted by AudioGaff:
First off more bands are better as an option. I don't know on the X5 plug, but with the DBmax you are able to select from 1-5 bands which you can't do on the Finalizer.

Second, you don't always need multiband for mastering or to use it just to get it louder.
There are many wasy to achieve this and multiband compression/limiting are just one.

Third, Using multiband for mastering correctly requires the use of skills that are very much different from recording and/or mixing. Most people do not have the capability to aquire these skills, yet alone in trying to learn them on a part time bassis only when you finish a mix.

Fourth, Those who make foolish and uneducated comments about multiband "sounding like it was underwater" or "The multibands always **** some of the mix balance of yours" clearly have no clue what the hell they are doing when trying to use multiband as a tool. That is one small reason why there is a specific profession with people who have the skills and experience to use these type of tools correctly.

Alécio Costa Tue, 10/07/2003 - 05:40
I will not start a flaming war at "my" home. In any moment I asked about your competence at all. On the opposite, I always enjoyed your posts and gear.
You are not the person to judge my competence, you never heard any stuff of mine. If you have any doubt, make a search at google and you´ll get the asnwers.
Foolish and incompetence are words I would never use with people I had never met or worked with.

anonymous Tue, 10/07/2003 - 17:08
Well, I am not a mastering engineer but I do occasionally "sweeten" some of my friends’ mixes since they seem to dig what I do for their stereo mixes (I do know that what I do cannot be deemed as “mastering").

As far as multi-band compressor settings go, I don't really ever have the same starting place for every mix and I usually wouldn't use multi-band compression solely to make something louder. I usually reach for it when there is an overbearing and dynamic tonal balance issue that is taking away from the potential loudness (example: a bass drum is pushing a little too hard but the rest of the low-end is otherwise ok). Though I am certain you already know what a multi-band comp does, I think it is easier to think of it as an equalizer that is dependant upon dynamics or as an EQ with some “features.”

When I try to make someone’s mix louder, I usually try to troubleshoot what it is that is keeping the mix from becoming louder. I then select the tool that I think will best address the issue. It is usually a bunch of tools working together to make a mix louder and I’ve found that every mix has different needs. It’s probably also helpful to know what a mix doesn’t need just as well.

I don’t know if this was the best advice, but it has worked for me.

mjones4th Thu, 10/09/2003 - 08:27
Well said Michael.

I have no problem making my stuff way louder than the commercial stuff of my chosen genre, but it doesn't sound better. Yet.

Now when dealing with miltibands, I use them to balance the sound, true. But I always start at the source track.

In other words, if I have an offensive bass drum, I'm not going to fix it at the mix bus with a mulitband, or even the sub-mix bus, but rather at the source.

Kev Fri, 10/10/2003 - 17:58
The first time I used multiband comp was with an active xover and 6 DBX over-easy's. No controls but it did serve it's purpose.

I still use multi bands in both hardware and plugs.

Use what you like and when you like. Don't let anyone tel you you shouldn't. If you have no experience .. pick your time and give it a go. Inch by inch you will gain experience.


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