We almost want to squash it down to an on-and-off pulse and then design the shape using the compressor's attack and release settings. Then, turn down the threshold (or turn up the input gain) until compression starts kicking in. Here are a few pitfalls to avoid when compressing the bass: Too much compression can suck the life out of the bass, making it sound flat and one-dimensional. Pro-Tip: Don't be tempted to perform these steps with your bass in solo mode. The Oxford Dynamics plugin is one of my favorites for this reason. This will help you achieve a bass that sounds consistent and even—so you can craft mixes that compete with the pros. At this point you can put the compressor in bypass mode to see if the volumes are similar between the un-affected and the compressed version. In this article we'll show you how to get punchy bass without sacrificing the low end. Step 6: Parallel compression. Just Industry News, Tips, and Exclusive Deals. Electronic dance music, rap or hip hop, heavy metal, pop, or any other dense arrangements will require deep compression. If certain notes are getting lost in the mix, while others are too loud, this is also a clue that some compression might be needed. This will alter the energy of the track and totally screw up the groove. What I'm being forced to assume in this article is that you know how to clean up your track by silencing regions that are meant to be muted, that you've applied bass guitar EQ properly, and that you understand what a compressor is and how the options work. This may mean that you need to work on other parts of your mix first and come back. This applies ducking to the bass, lowering its volume momentarily just long enough for the kick drum's attack and body to come through, then the volume returns during the decay tail of the kick. Remember—the goal of mixing is to try to make all the tracks in your mix fit together. It is basically the amount of time the compressor waits until engaging once the threshold has been exceeded. This sounds more "musical" and less processed, which is always the goal in most genres. One of the most popular choices is an 1176-style emulation like Waves’ CLA-76. Then set up the following: This is a fairly aggressive ratio that should cover most cases. What you can do though, if you're struggling or haven't mixed the rest of the track, is to route everything but the bass and kick to a bus and add a high pass filter to it. He acts as owner, editor, lead author, and web designer of LedgerNote, as well as co-author on all articles. So what you want to do is loop a note of the bass track and gradually reduce the attack time. Send each of your synth bass channels to an aux input and insert a colorful compressor with fast attack and release times like the CLA-76 or dbx 160.Use a high ratio to apply plenty of compression; don’t be afraid to peg the needle if it sounds good! Putting a limiter on your sub is pretty much vital as it makes every note as … Either way this will all apply but I'll be sharing images from plugins. This can make the compression gentler and more transparent. Let me know by leaving a comment below. I'm as guilty as everyone else in the past who defaults to a fast one millisecond attack time. This tutorial applies not only to bass guitar but to synthetic bass lines from a synthesizer or programmed in from a plugin in your digital audio workstation (DAW). Now you want to start reducing the threshold from 0 dB down towards the -20 dB range. Perhaps it does, but I'd rather not introduce a bunch of latency and need to correct for that. Many people will solo the track they're working on.

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