Compressor one setting to rule them all?

Hey all.
Is there a sort of “fool proof” “it just works” compressor setting that you could recommend for someone like me, who is not that accustomed with compressors? Most of the time I just want to glue it all together a bit, you know. Nothing crazy. I think it’s difficult to handle, and suddenly I’ve made it go out of control and don’t remember where it went wrong. Any simple and basic advice and experiences greatly appreciated! Complicated advice appreciate too :slight_smile:


I posted this photo of a nice buss type compression in another thread awhile back.

General guidelines for a gentle buss compressor are:

High Threshold
Low Ratio
Slow Attack
Medium to Fast Release

HPF to keep bass from triggering the compressor too much.

Use the blend control to mix the compressed vs direct sound.

Rely more on your ears than the gain reduction meter. It’s compressing even if you see no movement on the meter.

Avoid too much make up gain as it gets noisy.

It would be great to have a bypass other than turning the mix all the way to the left to A/B the compression vs direct. How about pushing the mix encoder?


What might work well for you is a little Motown-style compression (Google or use Wikipedia for more background information). Something like this:

Yep that’s a nice style too.

i was confused a bit too when I was using VST compressors, read up on all the terminology and it starts to become apparent how to use them with different sounds/sources.

Found all of these useful and take a slightly different approach in explaining which is helpful.

I won’t copy and paste what’s in there, you’ll have to RTFM :imp:

the ubk fatso, elysia xpressor etc have quite a few videos online of what they can do to audio. Might be worthwhile to watch some reviews on them to hear what they do if that helps. Just some suggestions to illustrate what compressors do, because if there was only one setting to get it right we wouldn’t have all these products in the first place :wink:

Thanks a lot! Great tips! I’ll try it out later today.

But… Does it pump like a 3630? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Thanx! Very interesting.

Thanks for the advice. All hints like this will help me build a better understanding of the compressor.
As for the A/B bypass, it’s not precisely what you like, but if you press function while twisting the mix encoder it snaps between 0, half, full. It’s something.


@t and @tsv, thank for your input. Very helpful.

Yeah. Nice. Thanks guys.

In case you want to learn more about compression, I recommend starting with this Wikipedia article: