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Why You Don't Understand Compression

Compressors aren't actually super complicated, but they are a little complicated. Compression posts tend to be better at getting likes than they are at teaching compression, which is why a lot of them are copy and paste jobs. So I'm gonna tackle things a little differently here. I wanna start by looking at the three reasons why compression isn't intuitive.


These are likely to be the reasons you've struggled with compression in the past. First, a compressor is likely to be your. Introduction to what I like to call smart effects. These don't just color the sound the way say an EQ does. A smart effect makes a decision based on what it hears, and that's a really crucial distinction.


Second, changing the level of a sound messes with your ability to evaluate it objectively. Even with trained ears, louder sounds better, but it's not. It's just louder. That makes a compressor possibly the most deceptive of tools. And then finally, a dynamics processor doesn't just shift the dynamics, it reshapes them.


It doesn't just make your track louder. It can do the opposite. It can make it more dynamic and punchy. It can make it less dynamic and more even. That's a lot of control. And so to operate one, you really need to know both what the controls do and also what it is you want to change in the first place.


Whew. So take your time, follow us in the next Dynamics post, we're gonna level up again, and if you're really ready to dig in with us, reach out and ask me about our upcoming classes. Until then, like this post and stay creative.

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