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Reverse Compression?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by chaosMK, Jun 1, 2005.


  1. chaosMK

    chaosMK

    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I have been searching the forum on everything about compression and came across a few comments where people were using a compression device to actually amplify their attack, kind of like the way this is done on bass drums (usually in metal) to make the sound punchier/tighter.

    Is this a feature that most compressors have? Can anyone elaborate about how this works? Thanks, MK
     
  2. All compressors in will achieve this effect. because they make your quiet signals sound louder, the attack will be amplified, thus sounding punchy and tight. This is not reverse compression, the opposite effect of the compressor is an expander, which makes quiet signals quieter and louder signals louder.
     
  3. Droog

    Droog

    Aug 14, 2003
    PDX
    If you really want a loud attack, then set the "attack" on your compressor to a slower setting, so it compresses the tail of the signal instread of the initial transient. It take some finesse to get optimal setings for each individual.

    As far as expanders go, they don't actuall amplify anything, at least no modern expander does. They simply attenuate the signals that do not excede the threshold. Engineers back in the day were not digging expanders because they did amplify the signal that broke the threshold. Upward expansion, and the problem is that it is one more un-necassary gain stage, not to mention the fact that the amplification circuit was usually pretty crappy and so folk felt it was deteriorating the signal, and thus Downward expansion was born. Some one thought "Hey, why don't we just attenuate what stays below the threshold?" The same effect is achieved and no additional gain stage.
     
  4. chaosMK

    chaosMK

    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    Can anyone recommend pedals with the "attack" setting? The ones I have looked at (digitech, boss, aphex) dont seem to have that setting, or it just has a different name on the pedal for the same thing.
     
  5. Droog

    Droog

    Aug 14, 2003
    PDX
    Yeah, a lot of the pedal based compressors are lacking in the feature department. Not only do the cut cost this way but they can offer a "dumbed down" version of a somewhat complicated process. Most rack unit offer what you would need, but offhand I don't know of any pedals, though I am sure they are out there. I will post links if I come across one. Though if I were you I would find a compressor that you can borrow for a while. Play around with it and you may find that will get the desired sound from something with a bit limited interface, especially if you really don't have much experiance with compressors in general. The Aphex Punch Factory is supposed to be a solid unit, affordable too. I have been thinking about the Demeter compulator, but really I think a DBX 160 is what I want, I like the sound and its rack mountable, which I dig, a bit more spendy, but hey, money is for spending right?

    Good luck.
     
  6. The TC Electronic Triple C Compressor (out of production), which is a multi-band compressor, is extremely flexible and will actually allow you to modify (increase) the attack of your signal. You can get some incredible punch using this feature.

    They probably have other products that have this feature. Also, be advised their price for new equipment is pretty steep.