limiting busses in rock music - digital

Recording Techniques, People Skills, Gear, Recording Spaces, Computers, and DIY

Moderators: drumsound, tomb

User avatar
dead but not forgotten
Posts: 2152
Joined: Mon Apr 14, 2008 8:02 pm

Re: limiting busses in rock music - digital

Post by losthighway » Wed Jan 13, 2021 6:48 am

FNM wrote:
Wed Jan 13, 2021 12:40 am
Nick Sevilla wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 9:29 am
The craziest compression thing I ever did was:

Route drumkit to a limiter.
Route all backing vocals to a different limiter.
Route all electric guitars to a different limiter.
Route the entire mix to yet another limiter.

That said, each limiter was doing only a LITTLE BIT of limiting. Not ever mass quantities of processing.

This enabled me to basically deliver a "mastered" mix, that could not be rtuly mastered much more, as far as EQ and level.

It is not what I normally do, but what the client wanted. Got the mixes to 99% of the final result like this. It took far more work mixing, because I had to keep all these limiters in mind.

Result? They hated the mastered versions, and ended up using my mixes instead. They choose a shitty ME, who was a moron. Their words not mine, and I do not recall who it is.

This is pretty much exactly what I'm talking about. The mix I did it on ended up really good in a different way, I'm just not sure if that's the reason. Ocassionally, when I'm going through a youtube phase I feel like I'll hear one of the pros talk about doing this, but I dunno maybe I made it up. I suspect some of those guys just need to be sending out mixes with that brickwall kick/snare squash in order to make their clients happy. I tried it again tonight and really liked it on the vocal bus and the bass. I spent some time with drums and I ended up preferring a nice parallel compression, but I could see it working on a different song. This isn't getting mastered so I mixed with a limiter on the bus too.
Well, I don't think the process is automatically worthy of derision from all of us with a more old school, or naturalistic aesthetic. Tapping a limiter is a sound, and it's not a loudness wars sound either if it isn't taken to an extreme.

genitals didn't survive the freeze
Posts: 3976
Joined: Mon Sep 29, 2003 7:33 pm
Location: Orlando

Re: limiting busses in rock music - digital

Post by mjau » Sun Jan 17, 2021 5:49 am

I have a template in Reaper I use often, with four busses (Vocals, Drums & Bass, Guitars, Keys & FX) feeding the master buss. No brickwall limiting, but I do like compression on the busses more often than not, though typically in the 1-2 dB range. My four instrument busses then go out as pairs to a Folcrom followed by a Stam SSL clone, and then back in where I might tweak the master buss with a little clean gain if I want to get it louder.

With plugins, I’m rarely compressing at any one stage more than a couple or few decibels. I don’t like to hear it when it’s too much, and limiters seem to jump out to my ears in a distracting way.

User avatar
zen recordist
Posts: 9245
Joined: Tue May 13, 2003 8:08 am
Location: Chi

Re: limiting busses in rock music - digital

Post by vvv » Sun Jan 17, 2021 10:32 am

Nick Sevilla wrote:
Wed Jan 13, 2021 5:35 am
I remember Metallica's awful "Death Magnetic".

What a POS sounding POS.

Thankfully, that really began the end of the Eternal Squash.

Huh, just about a contemporaneous parallel cite, here: "The worst record for loudness I have heard lately was Metallica's last (the EP was a little better)."
(I swear I didn't see yours until now!)

I have read, BTW, that the Guitar Hero stems actually sound better. :lol:
bandcamp; vlayman;
THD; Geronimo Cowboys;
I mix with olive juice.

permanent hearing damage
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 630
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2003 3:55 pm
Location: philly

Re: limiting busses in rock music - digital

Post by permanent hearing damage » Mon Jan 18, 2021 3:19 pm

in really dense mixes, i often stick a brick wall limiter on the bass. otherwise, it's tons of compression, often in parallel.

if i ever feel like anything is poking out too much, it often just needs work earlier in the chain - most common issue is inconsistent drummers with the kick.

takin' a dinner break
Posts: 193
Joined: Tue Jun 08, 2004 10:43 am

Re: limiting busses in rock music - digital

Post by FNM » Sun Jan 31, 2021 1:15 pm

In lieu of this thread I thought I would share a really fun limiter plugin I just found. It's the D16 Frontier Self-Adaptive Limiter.

Some of you may know, but if you get an issue of Computer Music magazine you get a fantastic plugin suite with some real gems, including this. I just updated mine and thought it was worth sharing since we were just talking about limiting. It's different from a L2 type thing, but damn it's good. If anyone wants to know any of the other CM gems, let me know.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 35 guests