I don’t always use a compressor, not on every track, simply because many synths are already compressed, however when I do use a compressor, I have found that T-Racks by IK-Multimedia will have the compressor I am looking for. What is great about T-Racks compressors is that they give you a variety to choose from and not all compressors behave the same way. It doesnt matter if you know little or nothing about compressors or an expert with T-Racks because they offer both numerous presets which are great and allow total control over all the parameters. This variety speeds up production and improves it at the same time once you become familiar with them. You will have your favorite go to settings for some things and for others you will want to adjust settings to your liking. You can save your own settings for quick reference.
Audio compression is a complex thing to apply, but a simple concept to understand and will help greatly in using compressors. There is no subsitute for experience though and a good ear so it helps to have that in addition to knowing how compressors work. In simplest terms, they work to squash the volume by raising the sounds that are low in volume and lowering those volumes of the louder sounds. But the simplicity stops here for there are all kinds of variables which affect the end sound. There is the quickness at which it attacks, or begins the compression, and the timing of the release or when it stops compressing. There are various amounts the compressor will raise the lower threshold of the volume and amounts it will attenuate. And on some compressors these are delayed by various amounts as well as some compressors not compressing the whole range of frequencies the same.
At IK-Multimedia, they have modeled their compressors exactly like ones used in real studios to achieve demanding results. You have control over the compressor the same way the studio engineer has over the physical models. There are some vintage models for certain types of sounds and modern compressors for other results.
IK-Mulitmedia has taken all this a step further and created T-Racks Custom shop, where you can try all the compressors and only buy the ones that you like the sound and feel for. Rybird uses T-racks in his productions and recommends that you try it too.
the bird is the word