HELP! Someone explain compressor settings to me??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by QORC, Mar 20, 2006.

  1. QORC


    Aug 22, 2003
    East Coast
    I have a new amp, and a new compressor to go with it. I am stumped as to what I'm supposed to set the compressor to- what it's supposed to sound like. I really need some help here. It's a DBX compressor. Right now, I have the guitar going to my rack tuner's "instrument" input - then from the "instrument" output in the back, I have it going into my dbx compressor "input" in the back - and the "output" going into my Ampeg amp's "input".

    Now the settings...I have it such that it totally blanks out the sound when I'm not playing it (just holding it)...there are these knobs (there are two channels. I am using one side):

    under "Gate" - there is one knob labeled "Threshold db"
    then under "Overeasy Compressor", two knobs - one labeled "Threshold db" and one labeld "Ratio". there is a button between them that says "Rel Ratio". two other knobs - "Peakstop Level" and "Gain"

  2. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    There's always the owners manual. Only as a last resort, of course.
  3. QORC


    Aug 22, 2003
    East Coast
    yeah, duh. it didn't help. I was hoping for a layman's explanation and some suggestions from a fellow bassist, thanks
  4. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Check out the websites for dbx and Rane (Google will get you there quickly). Both of those sites have very good tips on compression that aren't even specific to a particular make and model.
  5. QORC


    Aug 22, 2003
    East Coast
    thanks. I will
  6. [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica]On most compressors you will have controls for threshold, ratio, attack, and release. Threshold sets the signal level at which the compressor activates. Ratio adjusts the amount of gain reduction, where 2:1 signifies that a 2 dB increase in input will result in a 1 dB increase in output. Attack controls the speed at which the compressor reacts to the input signal. A shorter attack setting will cause compression of the initial transient, while a longer attack will allow for the initial attack before applying compression (on low frequency sounds, it is not advisable to use an overly short attack time because the compressor will actually distort the waveform). Release controls how long before the compressor "lets go" and stops compressing.[/FONT]