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TOPIC: How to right set up the microphone compressor?

How to right set up the microphone compressor? 05 Jun 2017 17:26 #5972

  • loshk
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How to right set up the microphone compressor in Roland E-80 (THRESHOLD and SUSTAIN LEVEL) ?
Roland E-80 v.2.01 (SRX-01, 02, 10), Roland M-GS64, Roland XV-5050, Ketron SD-2, Edirol PCR-500, Edirol M-16-DX, Kawai MAV-8
Last Edit: 05 Jun 2017 17:33 by loshk.
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How to right set up the microphone compressor? 05 Jun 2017 18:14 #5973

  • Diki
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I never used mine in the G70, but a good rule of thumb is, set the threshold high to catch only your loudest moments, and keep raising the ratio until it tames them to taste.

Bottom line... RECORD YOURSELF! While you play...

At home at first, try to sing 'normally' (don't try too hard to keep things even... we all tend to do with cans on in a studio setting!) and record the output. Listen on decent speakers. Try to see where your voice tends to jump out from the mix, and where it kind of fades away. Adjust the threshold gradually downwards from 0db until the places where it jumps out almost disappear. Then raise the output until the bits where you fade away are audible.

Try a ratio of no more than 2:1 at first, unless you want a really 'in your face' sound that pumps a lot. 4:1 or more will get you that!

But don't try to judge the compression while you are singing... ALWAYS check the recording. Because of how your voice sounds in your head as well as the sound coming from cans or speakers, you NEVER truly hear what others hear! Only a recording will do that. Plus, listening to playback gives you far more time to concentrate on whether it sounds natural, whether it is pumping too much, whether it sounds flat and unnatural...

But beware...! Remember, you are in essence turning down the loudest parts, and then BRINGING UP the entire level to compensate, and make the quietest moments louder. This is going to make feedback more likely on live gigs (if recording, you probably are using cans and can turn off the speakers), so a good mic that rejects feedback and sensible placement of your speakers is going to become more critical.
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How to right set up the microphone compressor? 05 Jun 2017 19:14 #5974

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Diki wrote: "But don't try to judge the compression while you are singing... ALWAYS check the recording. Because of how your voice sounds in your head as well as the sound coming from cans or speakers, you NEVER truly hear what others hear! Only a recording will do that." - Completely agreed with this

"Try a ratio of no more than 2:1 at first, unless you want a really 'in your face' sound that pumps a lot. 4:1 or more will get you that!"
- I understand this too.

But the parameters "Threshold" and "Sustain Level" have conditional values from 0 to 15 (which means - from 0 to 15? Where this ratio is 2:1 or 4:1?)
Roland E-80 v.2.01 (SRX-01, 02, 10), Roland M-GS64, Roland XV-5050, Ketron SD-2, Edirol PCR-500, Edirol M-16-DX, Kawai MAV-8
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How to right set up the microphone compressor? 06 Jun 2017 07:52 #5975

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Yeah, Roland don't make it easy, LOL. Plus there's really no gain reduction meter, like every real compressor has.

Basically I always took 0 threshold as no compression at all, and you just wind it down until you start to hear it kicking in.

As to 'Sustain Level', your guess is as good as mine! It might be make-up gain, it might be a ratio adjustment! Only your ears can tell.

But asking for others' settings isn't really all that useful, because much depends on the microphone, and your singing strength and mic technique. No two are much alike....

Currently, I'm strongly considering one of these... Especially as the BK-9 only has a nice vocal reverb, but no echo, which is pretty important for much of the reggae I do... It does automatic adaptive EQ, de-essing, compression and a gate, then reverb, echo and a subtle auto-tune. Not bad for about $150... I'll post a review as soon as it arrives. www.tc-helicon.com/en/products/mic-mechanic-2/
Last Edit: 06 Jun 2017 07:54 by Diki.
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How to right set up the microphone compressor? 06 Jun 2017 08:00 #5976

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But if you are determined to use the E80's compressor, about the only thing I can suggest to find out what's happening is to use a recording into the input, and use the same recording into a DAW compressor, with known values, and just record and compare the output...

Want to look even deeper? Try a recording of a volume sweep of pink noise (a gradually increasing noise blast) and look at the resultant waveforms to compare slopes and threshold points.

Or just use your ears! Generally, you get a compressor dialed in, you'll know from the smile on your face! :lol:
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