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All IFXs = Stereo Compressor?

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Joined: 27 Dec 2019
Posts: 178
Location: Dallas, TX

PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2020 1:57 am    Post subject: All IFXs = Stereo Compressor? Reply with quote

I have been reviewing the effects settings for preload demo songs for Triton keyboards to see what effects the professionals chose to use for different songs.

The programmer* for the Triton Studio song "Progression II" made the choice of using only Stereo Compressors for all 5 IFXs. There's no arguing that these were good choices based on the sound of the final mix. But why make this choice?

Progressions II is an orchestral piece with piano with lots of dynamics, with transitions between 3 tracks playing softly and 14 tracks playing loudly.


Each Stereo Compressor IFX has slightly different settings. Sensitivity (10-50), Attack (26-61), EQ Trim (70-80), Low EQ boost (+1.5 to +3.5), High EQ (-1.0 to +2.0), Output Level (50-60). All IFXs have Send1 and Send2 to MFXs set between 40-60. MFX1=Reverb Smooth Hall, MFX2=Reverb Room. All FXs are "Wet".

The routing is:
IFX 1: Piano (1 track)
IFX 2: Strings and Woodwind (8 tracks)
IFX 3: Brass (2 tracks)
IFX 4: Drums and Percussion (4 tracks)
IFX 5: Sampled Strings (1 track)

I'm thinking that the main reason Stereo Compressors were used was to manage the internal headroom to prevent clipping, especially given the dynamics of the song with the occasional simultaneous playing of many instruments.

Another reason might be that the compressor's general function to "make louder sounds softer and softer sounds louder (after make-up gain)" simply made certain instruments and instrument groups sound better.

For comparison, I turned off all IFXs. This caused a decrease in the overall volume. Increasing the master volume to compensate, the overall sound is somewhat thinner and sometimes "scratchy" in measures with lots of tracks playing. I turned all IFXs back on, and the sound is fuller (perhaps due to the low EQ boost?), the instruments are distinct, dynamic swells are dramatic, and the sound overall is more realistic, as if seated listening to an actual orchestra.

So in summary, the choice here to use Stereo Compressors for all IFXs works. But most of us probably wouldn't make this choice, at least not initially. So why do you think the programmer* made this choice for this particular song?

*Scott Frankfurt
Triton Extreme 88 w/MOSS
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