Knowledge Base > F.A.Q.s > Compressor Filter

Compressor Filter


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A compressor is very useful if your source (typically a microphone) is set for a normal level but can sometimes spike much louder, such as impromptu shouting or getting into a heated discussion. It will automatically lower the source's volume to reduce the likelihood of it peaking above 0dB, which can cause clipping and distortion, and then turn it back up once the volume is back to normal.

In short, a compressor makes loud sounds quieter and typically would be placed at or near the beginning of your filter chain.


Property Description Default
Ratio The amount of compression or gain reduction to apply to a signal that is above the threshold. For example, 2:1 will be a weak compression (this translates to an audio level 6dB above the threshold will be 3dB above after the compression), while 6:1 will be a much stronger compression 10.00:1
Threshold Once the signal reaches this level the compressor will begin to apply compression at the set ratio. When levels are below the threshold the ratio is 1:1 which translates to no gain reduction -18.00 dB
Attack How quickly, in milliseconds, you want the compressor to reach full gain reduction when levels exceed the threshold 6 ms
Release How quickly, in milliseconds, you want the compressor to return to zero gain reduction after levels drop below the threshold 60 ms
Output Gain When you compress a signal it typically ends up quieter which reduces your average level. Applying Output gain brings the average level of the source back up which can help improve its presence over-top of other audio sources 0.00 dB
Sidechain/Ducking Source When a compressor is placed on an output audio source such as your Desktop, Sidechain can use the input from a microphone/aux source to reduce the volume of the output source None

Sidechain Compression/Ducking

Sidechain compression, also known as Ducking, can be used to make room for your voice when speaking over-top of music and games by lowering your desktop audio when you speak.

The following sidechain compression settings are recommended as a place to start. Adjust the threshold to control the strength of the ducking, attack/release control how quickly the volume changes.

  • Ratio: 32:1
  • Threshold: -36dB
  • Attack: 100ms (how fast the audio will duck out)
  • Release: 600ms (how fast the audio will return to full volume)
  • Output Gain: 0dB (you do not apply output gain when using Sidechain compression)
  • Sidechain/Ducking Source: Microphone