Bass Compression

TinnitusD&B

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#1
I read something years ago that always kind of stuck with me. The producer was talking about compression and said that the only thing he doesn't compress is his bass lines.

Now i've just read somewhere that talked about bass compression and I wondered if anyone here compresses their bass lines?

If you do, to what extent do you compress and is it useful in a particular kind of track or to achieve a certain type of sound?

Cheers guys!
 
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#2
Compression is a tool to control the track's dynamic range, you just have to think about it as such.

For example, I'm working on this track where the bassline has a certain higher note which is much louder than all of the rest. In this case I used compression to tame this difference in dynamic range and so making this gap less pronounced.

Not everything needs compression just for the sake of it, but of course you can use compression to achieve a certain type of sound (e.g. compressing after the reverb; parallel compression; using an analog model type compression to give some character to the sound)
 

TinnitusD&B

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#3
Of course but the article was hinting more along the lines of using compression throughout the majority of the bass lines and not just here and there.
 

Sammy Dexcell

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#4
To be honest its probably better to just attach a velocity trigger to the amp of the bass and simply lower the velocity for the 'louder' note. If you compress then the louder note is going to sound weird and squashed alongside the other quieter notes.
Subtly it could work, but in place of just lowering the velocity and turning the vst's main volume up it just seems pointless imo
Saying all that, there are no rules just guidelines, the main objective is to get it sounding good, if it works that way then crack on I guess?
 
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#5
To be honest its probably better to just attach a velocity trigger to the amp of the bass and simply lower the velocity for the 'louder' note. If you compress then the louder note is going to sound weird and squashed alongside the other quieter notes.
Subtly it could work, but in place of just lowering the velocity and turning the vst's main volume up it just seems pointless imo
Saying all that, there are no rules just guidelines, the main objective is to get it sounding good, if it works that way then crack on I guess?
To be honest, I thought about that as well but then again, the bassline sounded good with compression on it.
It is exactly as you say: if it sounds good, then it is good.
I think what everyone thinks when producing is: "can it sound better?" :D
 

Sammy Dexcell

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#6
Do a reference, try one and try it without, you'll only really noticed at the final stages though when you are pushing for as much headroom as poss whilst still having it as loud as you can?
 
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