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Old 2012-12-20, 18:11
selig's Avatar
selig selig is offline
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Originally Posted by Spectrephonic View Post
400 hz is the loudness frequency, sometimes boosts in that area can give you a lot more perceived loudness. For example, guitars or lead synths.
I've always heard that 5 kHz was the loudness frequency. 400 Hz can sometimes be the mud frequency, so be careful with this. I often find that boosting around 800-1000 Hz can help clarify the pitch of an individual track if you find it getting too noisy or boomy overall (electric guitars especially). Of course, HP filters are an essential basic tool, but don't overdo it or you'll simply 'neuter' your mix!

In general, EQing with fletcher/munson in mind is helpful for loudness, but compression is the real key. Fast attack is important, since a slow attack compressor will actually ADD dynamic range to a track. Lower ratios are better if you're compressing at multiple stages (see below) because ratio can be cumulative. Two compressors in series with a 2:1 ratio is roughly equivalent to one with a 4:1 ratio.

For me it starts with choosing sounds/samples. From there, I find a little compression on all tracks is better than one fat compressor on the entire mix. Compressing by a few dB on individual tracks, sub-mixes, and the main mix is they way I achieve transparent loudness long before mastering. That way, mastering can give you even MORE loudness with less processing (and less destructive side-effects). :-)
Giles Reaves, aka 'selig'
Audio Illusionist, Musical Technologist
Selig Audio, LLC
Old 2012-12-20, 19:08
jlgrimes jlgrimes is offline
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Originally Posted by djphathead View Post
Compression as far as I understand is the only way to gain more perceived loudness. I usually use fast attack/release settings to achieve this just wondering if any one had any other ways they use compression to gain more perceived loudness.
A few things I do using compressors:

1. Sidechain compression on bass signals using kicks as triggers. What this does is duck your bassline to help make the kick cut through the mix better. Not needed on every song. Some songs or styles this may even sound wrong. But using a little can help your kick cut through if your bassline is drowning it out.

2. Using multiple compressors at very light settings. Usually using multiple compressors at light settings can get you a cleaner sound than going heavy on one compressor. Another thing is to have one compressor do the general dynamic range reduction and another one just catch the stray peaks. I like doing this on vocals.

3. Parallel compression. Typically good for drum (although some people use this for vocals). You can go crazy on the settings here because you mix in the squashed signal with the uncompressed signal. Great for adding weight to drums. Sometimes you can add effects like reverb to the squashed signal depending on song or EQ in extra lows and highs for a meatier sound. Often referred to as NY style compression.

4. Level automation. Many purists hate compressors and swear by level automating in a DAW. This exclusively for creating upfront vocals generally sounds wrong for my style of music, but usually I might do a few level tweaks after the compression to perfect the levels. This would probably work perfectly for less main instruments that don't have to be the center of attention but offer more supporting roles in your mix.

5. Learning your compressors. Every brand of compressor has pros and cons. Some sound great on vocals or bad on drums and vice versa. Some are very versatile but harder to use. Others are easy to use. But there are no wrong compressors. One wrong compressor for one person's voice might sound great for the same person's voice on a different song.
Old 2012-12-21, 07:44
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djfm1983 djfm1983 is offline
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Here are some videos I ran into....

Last edited by djfm1983; 2012-12-21 at 07:55.
Old 2012-12-21, 12:28
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Spectrephonic Spectrephonic is offline
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Flashback! Yeah those vids by Dave are great.
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