Compressor and limiter

In simple terms, a compressor compresses the louder parts of an audio signal and boosts the quieter parts, resulting in a more consistent level of volume throughout a song.

The compressor works by analyzing the amplitude of an audio signal and automatically reducing its level when it exceeds a certain threshold (CM.th). This means that when the signal reaches a specific volume level, the compressor will start to reduce the volume to maintain a consistent level. This process is known as compression. The amount by which the volume is reduced above the threshold is controlled by a compressor's ratio parameter (CM.rt). For example, a ratio of 1:2 ('2') reduces any volume above the threshold by a factor of 2 (e.g. halves the volume).

The speed by which a compressor kicks in, is governed by its 'attack' (CM.at) setting. Similarly, the speed by which it stops compressing the signal when the audio drops below the threshold, is governed by the 'release' (CM.rl) setting.

Compressors can be used to add warmth, punch, and clarity to an individual Woovebox track. Overall, a compressor is a powerful tool in music production, enabling producers to make their sound more polished and professional.

A limiter can be thought of as a more aggressive compressor; you can achieve a limiter by using a high compression ratios (> 1:20) and short attacks.


Enhancing transients

Enhancing transients with a compressor in music production means emphasizing the initial, fast-moving part of a sound or a musical note. Transients are the brief moment at the beginning of a sound or musical note that determines its sharpness, attack, and impact. Compressors can be used to enhance the transients of a sound by selectively boosting the initial transient while reducing the rest of the sound.

To enhance transients using a compressor, the attack time is adjusted. The attack time determines how quickly the compressor reacts to the input signal. By setting a shorter or longer attack time, less or more of the initial high-volume sound is passed through before its volume is reduced. This has the effect of emphasizing the start of a sound ('transient') less or more.

By emphasizing the transients of a sound using a compressor, the sound becomes more pronounced and dynamic, allowing it to cut through a mix better. This technique is commonly used in genres such as electronic dance music and hip hop, where a sharp, punchy sound is desired.


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