Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

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Damo303
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Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by Damo303 » Mon Dec 22, 2008 8:12 pm

Hi, can anyone recommend a good Gate Compressor?

I want one to gate sampled drum sounds such as 808/606 sounds but also I have heard that you can use them to cut out hiss sounds from my Korg Electribe?

Basically recently I got a Korg Electribe SX-1 and have discovered it has a large hiss sound coming from the main outputs, at first i thought it was a fault with the unit but after googling the subject it seems that its quite common for these units to have this hiss sound. Some people say that by changing the vacum valves to better ones can stop this but i've spoken to experts about this and they don't think it will make any difference so I guess all I can do is try and gate the sounds so that there is no hiss in any quiet parts of the track.

I never use compressors so some guidance would be much appreciated. Is this something that will be easy to do?

I don't want to spend too much money so the cheaper the better but I don't want rubbish it has to be good quality.

Cheers

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by HideawayStudio » Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:34 pm

You can't go wrong with the Alesis 3630 - it's the industry standard analog 2 channel compressor, noise gate. They are well built, easy to use, extremely reliable and still in production after all these years. You can pick them up new for £50 if you look around! :)

Dan, Hideaway Studio.

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by divineaudio » Sat Jan 10, 2009 8:52 pm

HideawayStudio wrote:You can't go wrong with the Alesis 3630 -
actually you can. [-X

i have one and it's just barely good enough to be usable. it's kinda noisy, especially when using heavy compression with a lot of make up gain. the gate does not operate smoothly no matter how you set the release time, so you will likely lose the decay on some of your samples, especially if you use any reverb or delay effects. after all, they're cheap for a reason.

at least look for a dbx 266/166 or if you can swing it, get a drawmer ds201.

as far as the noise on your esx is concerned - have you normalized all of your samples? individual part levels turned up? do you notice the hiss only when you have the tube drive turned up or does it always do it?

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by killedaway » Sun Jan 11, 2009 9:32 am

divineaudio wrote: at least look for a dbx 266/166 or if you can swing it, get a drawmer ds201.
i just picked up an old 266 a week or two ago, but the dang thing needs a PSU. 'soon as i find one, i'll try it out on some stuff and let you know how it goes, if you haven't already bought one before then, Damo.

as for my own ESX, i think i've been pretty lucky so far. it's pretty quiet, unless i crank the tubes. funnily enough, i run both my ESX and EMX with the tubes almost halfway up all the time. i care not one wit for the extra hiss, nor the naysayers: the saturation on drums (especially kicks and hats) is tops, and totally worth the tradeoffs, to me. love it.
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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by Damo303 » Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:53 pm

thanks for the input. I also own both the Electribe SX and MX versions and the hiss on the SX is much worse than the MX. It seems to be more of a problem when I turn the tube gain pot past 9 o'clock. Generally if the samples are really loud and of a good punchy quality its not much of a problem as a little hiss can help to 'glue' all the sounds together. (I don't like things sounding too digital). BUT if i'm programming a 606 beat or similar it can be a real problem due to the nature of the sounds. As the hiss is much louder than on the MX i'm pretty sure there is a problem with it so on Korg's advice i'm going to change the valves to a better quality matched set before I go down the compression route. Also it could need cleaning inside so worth checking that too.

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by steveman » Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:46 pm

Damo303 wrote:Hi, can anyone recommend a good Gate Compressor?

I want one to gate sampled drum sounds such as 808/606 sounds but also I have heard that you can use them to cut out hiss sounds from my Korg Electribe?

Basically recently I got a Korg Electribe SX-1 and have discovered it has a large hiss sound coming from the main outputs, at first i thought it was a fault with the unit but after googling the subject it seems that its quite common for these units to have this hiss sound. Some people say that by changing the vacum valves to better ones can stop this but i've spoken to experts about this and they don't think it will make any difference so I guess all I can do is try and gate the sounds so that there is no hiss in any quiet parts of the track.

I never use compressors so some guidance would be much appreciated. Is this something that will be easy to do?

I don't want to spend too much money so the cheaper the better but I don't want rubbish it has to be good quality.

Cheers
If your problem is noise, you don't want a compressor (though you may want one for different reasons), you want a noise gate.

The previous poster suggested the Drawmer DS201, this is as near to 'industry standard' for noise gates as you can get. They've been around for at least 20 years and are still being made - there's a reason.

As for the 3630 being an 'industry standard' :shock: , well Daft Punk supposedly use them for it's particular compression style, otherwise it's cheap. As for the gates... The best known mod to improve the sound of a 3630 is to bypass the gates, that should tell you all you need to know about their quality. ;)

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by Stab Frenzy » Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:15 am

Damo303 wrote:thanks for the input. I also own both the Electribe SX and MX versions and the hiss on the SX is much worse than the MX. It seems to be more of a problem when I turn the tube gain pot past 9 o'clock. Generally if the samples are really loud and of a good punchy quality its not much of a problem as a little hiss can help to 'glue' all the sounds together. (I don't like things sounding too digital). BUT if i'm programming a 606 beat or similar it can be a real problem due to the nature of the sounds. As the hiss is much louder than on the MX i'm pretty sure there is a problem with it so on Korg's advice i'm going to change the valves to a better quality matched set before I go down the compression route. Also it could need cleaning inside so worth checking that too.
Yep, you've just got noisy tubes in your unit. Getting an awesome pair of matched tungsols or something will be cheaper than getting a DS201, do that first. Also keep in mind that the tubes on those electribes are run at low voltage and should be thought of more as a distortion unit than as something to give you a hi-fi valve sound. If you're turning it up to 9 o'clock it's not surprising at all that you've got a lot of hiss.

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by Damo303 » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:29 pm

9 o'clock is pretty low, its barely turned from zero. Plus I still get the hiss even when the valve is turned all the way down. :?

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Re: Good Gate Compressor for drums and hiss?

Post by Stab Frenzy » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:00 am

Ooops, I was thinking 3 o'clock for some reason, even though I wrote 9. :oops:

I can't remember if turning the valve drive knob all the way down completely bypasses it, it's been a while since I played with one. It could be that something else in the output section is making the noise after all, like the opamps that drive the output. Do I remember correctly that there's an aux out you can send stuff to that completely bypasses the tubes? If so try that and see if it hisses as well. Also is the noise as bad through the headphones?

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Re: Many Faces of Love

Post by divineaudio » Sun Jan 25, 2009 10:16 am

Rutru2598 wrote:yadda yadda yadda
here we go again...

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