Multiband and Dynamics... wtf?

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meneedit
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Multiband and Dynamics... wtf?

Post by meneedit » Thu May 24, 2007 9:03 am

Hey guys. I would like to ask you about Multiband Compressors and Dynamics.

Ever since I discovered that it is necessary to use compressors in the production of electronic music I have used them in every track I have worked on.

I am using an old version of fruityloops (3.5, because I don't like the newer versions)

Anyway, i've got this strange lingering feeling that I need to be using other things.

I've got a VST called "multi-band" which is a multiband compressor. I dont know what multiband compressors do but i'll take a guess.... do they compress only some frequencies? because if they do, I have already been toying with an idea that might be similar.

here is the idea that I had:

-Take a sample of an instrument or drum into Adobe Audition and use the frequency splitter to split it into 3 or 4 parts.
-Import the 3 or 4 parts into fruityloops or whatever.
-Compress either only the bass, mid, treble.... or use different compression settings on the seperate sounds.

However, I would be using this as an effect rathering than a mastering method.

So what are multiband compressors?

I also have a VST called dynamics, which has some settings I haven't seen before.

Can somebody please tell me what dynamics do? and are they called dynamic compressors or dynamic filters?

sorry for the long read, but any help would be appreciated. I also like to share my ideas with other producers. 8)


Thank you

8) 8) 8) 8) 8)

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Post by GeneralBigbag » Thu May 24, 2007 4:22 pm

Unless I'm greatly mistaken, the multi-band compressor does indeed allow you to split the audio signal into several frequency bands and apply different compression settings to each one.
I've found it incredibly useful for home 'mastering', to bring up the loudness of an already-mixed track. If you have control over the frequency bands, you can go a long way in shaping the final sound of a song.
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Post by meneedit » Wed May 30, 2007 12:59 am

thank you 8)


what about the dynamics one though?

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Post by Stab Frenzy » Wed May 30, 2007 3:06 am

Dynamics is the word for the range of effects that include compression, limiting, expanding and gating.

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Post by Cruel Hoax » Wed May 30, 2007 7:49 am

Stabby hit it on the head, as usual. The word "dynamics" is used as a catch-all to include all effects that f**k with -erm- the dynamics (loudness/softness/transients, etc.) of your signal.

The one thing I find myself using multiband compressors for the most is "gluing" background vocals into a solid wall that sits behind the lead. It's like upping the contrast on the model in the foreground, while dialing down the saturation on what's behind her. Works a treat in that context.

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Re: i'm here for the casting call

Post by GeneralBigbag » Wed May 30, 2007 4:40 pm

Cruel Hoax wrote: The one thing I find myself using multiband compressors for the most is "gluing" background vocals into a solid wall that sits behind the lead.
I find them extremely good for bringing up levels when 'mastering' (amateuring) mixed tracks, I get a lot more control over levels and the way each voice sits in the stereo mix than I can get out of a regular compressor or limiter.
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Re: i'm here for the casting call

Post by meneedit » Thu May 31, 2007 4:35 am

Cruel Hoax wrote: The one thing I find myself using multiband compressors for the most is "gluing" background vocals into a solid wall that sits behind the lead. It's like upping the contrast on the model in the foreground, while dialing down the saturation on what's behind her. Works a treat in that context.

-Hoax
Okay.... i know people like to use fancy words, but honestly, i dont understand what you mean by "saturation" when it comes to music.... the same goes for 'solid wall'.

sorry dude :oops: but could you please explain the exact same thing in lamens terms?

sooooorry :oops: :oops: :oops:

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Post by Cruel Hoax » Thu May 31, 2007 7:51 am

"Saturation" can mean a few things, but think about it: Where do you run into this word in everyday life? "I dropped my towel in the bath, and now it's saturated with water." "Man, that cake was so sweet! It was like it was saturated with sugar!" "The photographer deliberately left the aperture open too long, and the colors in this photo look super-saturated."

So, it's kind of like soaking into something. Now let's think audio-wise. Let's say we're recording a standard clean-ish guitar part onto tape. We turn the levels up; it starts to sound a bit dirtier. We keep on cranking that sucker up until the tape is just not capable of taking any more level. Man, that's saturated! So, how does it sound? Slightly distorted, maybe a bit overdriven. We've "saturated" the dynamic range of our available equipment.


I tend to use visual terms when talking about sound, because I imagine a soundstage in my head. I find this really useful, as I find that a lot of the rules of visual composition can translate quite well to the soundstage, if you choose to think about it that way.

(For this example, let's assume standard rock/pop/electro/rap music. All these rules go out the window when you are The Residents or Negativland. The visual composition part of it stays, however!)

For example, the lead vocalist is generally at the front of the stage, singing right to the audience, right? Background vocalists will generally be standing behind him, and so on. Now, what about our music mix? Where is the lead vocal most of the time? Right in the center, right "out front of" the rest of the music. In other words, the vocal isn't being obscured by the instruments; you canj always understand what he's saying, because that's how you catch a main meaning of the song, right?

I was using the term "saturation" in a visual sense, as if adjusting color balance in Photoshop/The Gimp/etc. You might want the colors of your model (the human in the foreground) to be brighter, deeper, more saturated, while you might want the background more dim, washed-out, indistinct in contrast. The same can apply to your mix: let the natural bright, persuasive character of the lead vocalist sit right out front, while the background parts don't demand the same focus.


But let's say you're recording your song. You have some background vocal parts to add. They're all your voice, same as the lead vocal. But think of our imaginary stage: those guys are standing behind the lead vocalist, right? They're surely not sharing his microphone and his place on stage: that would be awkward or impossible! Same with your recording!

You don't want one word in the background vocals to pop out louder than the lead for a second, do you? (Assuming that this is not a call-and-answer-type musical phrase.) No, you want all of the BGV's to stay behind the lead. You still want 'em audible, of course. And -unlike the single lead vocalist- there are many BG vocalists, so they can spread from left to right across the stage behind the lead singer to support him. Or, in terms of your mix, you can spread the BGVs out, panning one left, another mid-left, another mid-right, and another right. Now they're spatially out of the way of the lead vocalist. I generally cut out a bit of low end from each BGV track, too, and perhaps determine a unique harmonic "space" for the BGVs to live in, which might involve compression, saturation (here used in the non-visual sense, as "overdriving" and subtle distortion) or whatever else seems tasty that day. Now they're tonally separated from the lead vocalist. And -to avoid bits 'n pieces of the BGVs from popping out of their proper place- I'll send all BGVs to a single stereo track, and insert a multiband compressor on that track. Now I'm compressing all of the BGVs together, right? One gets a bit loud, the compressor reigns in the total level so that it stays the same. Frequency-wise, too. If there's a particular -say- bright syllable popping outta the background, the multiband takes care of ducking it down, without (necessarily) f**k with the rest of the frequency spectrum.

That's what I mean by a "solid wall" of sound: a nice wide space that always sits behind the lead vocal. It reinforces the lead, but does not overshadow it.

Does that help?

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Re: dosting while prunk

Post by meneedit » Mon Jun 04, 2007 10:07 am

hehe, no worries, that was very good :D


Thank you so much!

:D :D :D :D :D

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Post by Stab Frenzy » Mon Jun 04, 2007 6:01 pm

Stop being so good hoax, you make the rest of us look bad...

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