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Compression - FYI

Discussion in 'Pedal/Effects Owners Clubs' started by Obsessed, Apr 13, 2021.

  1. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    It took me about two years and three borrowed compressor pedals from my best friend to get a good understanding about applying compression to my sound. Lately in a @fivewattworld video, Keith introduced a colleague of his by the name of Rhett Shull. Anyway, I came across this fantastic video by him explaining compression for us guitarists. I think it is important to understand the various parameters. This video would have saved me oodles of time, so I thought it might help others in this forum thinking about the world of compression. So here it is and I hope it helps:

     
  2. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    I'm just bumping this for others interested in compression. Yup, this video is that good.
     
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  3. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Friend of Leo's

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    Cool. Lots of people don’t understand how to use it beneficially.
     
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  4. Dan German

    Dan German Doctor of Teleocity

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    I know I don’t.

    Interesting and educational vid, though I don’t know if it is likely to make me buy a compressor.
     
  5. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Friend of Leo's

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    I’m ok with you not buying one.
    My work here is done.
     
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  6. Gardo

    Gardo Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I have a compressor on a shelf somewhere.Maybe after watching the video I’ll give it another chance
     
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  7. Cadillac_Mike

    Cadillac_Mike Tele-Meister

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    I'd like to get one for that super 80's clean electric sound :D.
     
  8. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Yup, I did not post this video to encourage people to buy a compressor pedal. I think it is important to understand not only the sounds we play, but the sounds we hear. It took me a lot of years before I bought a compressor pedal. A lot of pedalboard real estate and lots of bucks for subtle icing on the cake compared to fun effects. Throwing the knowledge into your toolbox is good enough for now.
     
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  9. MojoTrwall

    MojoTrwall Tele-Holic

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    It's always one for me, but I build at least 5 or 6 knobs one.

    Two knobs are just huge no Imo.
     
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  10. Dan German

    Dan German Doctor of Teleocity

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    Oh, I’m not arguing with the idea of compressors here. Lots of people I love listening to are using one, and the video helped me understand compression better. I had one, and for a while it was a useful part of my pedal board, but since it crapped out, I have tried others, and never got what I wanted. Now, I have a setup that gets me the sound I want without one. Even Rhett points out quite strongly that it’s important to Turn It Off sometimes.
     
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  11. 4pickupguy

    4pickupguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    The problem with compression pedals is that guitars players expect to hear some overt effect. Problem is, usually, if you can hear a compressor doing its thing its probably doing too much of it. Once I can get my amps loud enough, I no longer use a compressor. But, for those gigs that are low volume and keep you in the “pinky zone”, they are great.
     
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  12. mexicanyella

    mexicanyella Friend of Leo's

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    Well explained, but I think that acoustic strumming with a light pick was non-optimal for audio examples, as was the boomy mic position near the soundhole. I think viewers would have been able to hear the differences better with something brighter and more percussive.

    A snare drum track might have shown what he was talking about more clearly...especially with regard to attack and release time settings.
     
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  13. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Yup, I always say less than three knobs compressor pedal for an effect, four knobs or more for subtle icing on the cake.
     
  14. MojoTrwall

    MojoTrwall Tele-Holic

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    Treshold ratio attack release and level are must have on a compressor.

    You then Can really fine Tune between a limiter so it's an full effect, or laid back to avoid post production compression.

    But it's a must.
     
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  15. DugT

    DugT Tele-Afflicted

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    Whenever I want to learn how to adjust an effect, I google tutorials on the effect and/or the pedal. I highly recommend it vs learning the hard way and reinventing the wheel. Take advantage of the internet age. Life is short, don't make it worse.
     
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  16. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity

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    As I've said before, I used a compressor for a few years. I loved the sound standing in front of my amp. Then I got a guitar wireless rig. I went out in the crowd back by the pool table at a gig. It was a place we played a lot. I couldn't believe how bad it sounded! yuck. Mushy soft pick attack.
    Strangely it sounded nothing like that right in front of the amp. Sold the compressor the next week and haven't had one for years.
    I need to listen to that video I guess. But I'm warning; find out what your sound is to everyone else but you!

    A couple things have come to mind since though:
    -I'm 80%+ a neck pickup player. Neck pups can be indistinct playing lead on certain songs or sounds. Maybe that contributed to the problem because when I think of Brad Paisley etc, he uses a compressor I think, but he uses that Tele bridge pickup set to be warmish and punchy. The bridge pup is always more of a finite sound.
    -The other thought is that maybe the amount of compression I liked to use standing in front of the amp where you can hear everything was too much? It was an MXR Dyna Comp set about 12-1 oclock.
     
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  17. Mike_LA

    Mike_LA Tele-Afflicted

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    I watched the vid, yah he changes a knob but doesn’t say what to listen for and i couldn't hear enough difference to bother listening to the whole vid.
     
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  18. USian Pie

    USian Pie Tele-Meister

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    At least for guitar, trying to hear differences in compression on youtube video seems like it could be frustrating unless you are way exaggerating settings.

    It's a "feel" thing -- like the tube amp transformer sag everybody says they miss in solid state amps. That is actually a form of compression itself.

    Depending on where and how the compressor is set up, there can be an audible quality in how it affects the amp. The harsh spikes get tamed. Whether it is noticeable or sounds better/worse may depend on the amp and how it reacts to spikes.

    For clean Telecaster players, it can take the harshness out of treble string snaps. It also makes a clean guitar more sensitive to do harmonics and other tricks that normally need distortion.
     
  19. nobis17

    nobis17 Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Thanks for the video. I like watching the stuff Rett Shull does. I don't use a compressor on my guitar but I have actually been working on my pedal order for my bass guitar. I currently have my comp in front of my signal chain. But when I get the chance I want to reorder stuff to octave > EF > fuzz > comp.
    What I really need to do is take my next day off and get all the pedals off my boards and just have a huge "mix and match" day :p
     
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  20. Wyzsard

    Wyzsard Friend of Leo's

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    I thought I found a comp pedal that would end the hunt with the Barber Tone Press. I loved it but when I sold off my guitar gear to fund a bass rig I replaced it with the Keeley Bassist. I was quite happy with the Keeley. Super easy to dial in and transparent as well.

    Now I'm rebuilding a guitar rig and I tried the Bassist a few nights ago. Cyrus at Ovnilab reported it's the same as the guitar version GC2, save for 1 cap to jibe with the lows on a bass so I gave it a spin. It's wonderful.

    Best demo I've come across is Pete Thorn's. Kinda busts the " compressor is a crutch for poor technique " cliche (which I bought into for years). Pete certainly doesn't have poor technique.

     
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