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WIGGLING 'LITE' IN GUEST MODE

RNC vs RNLA
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> General Gear  
Author RNC vs RNLA
neilbaldwin
I decided to buy both of these to see what the fuss was about, with the intention of A-B-ing them and there would be a clear winner. Sell the loser. Job done.

However, tests so far have proven inconclusive. help

I love the transparency of the RNC, especially in Real Nice mode it's like bloody black magic on a mix or a drum track.

But then I like the character of the RNLA, especially on electronic/synthesised drums.

Wondered if anyone else has had/have both and had any strong opinions either way?
digable-me
I'd be interested to hear people's thoughts on this as well.

neilbaldwin, would you mind elaborating more on the difference's between them? I think I'm more interested in having a compressor for drums, so is the RNC the one to go for?
neilbaldwin
I think so far I'd sum up as:

RNC: when you start to slam it hard it doesn't sound so nice but in Real Nice mode you can set the controls pretty extreme and the results still remain somewhat transparent whilst giving you some room for plenty extra gain.

RNLA: is a lot less transparent but you seem to be able to drive it harder than the RNC before it starts to destroy your signal integrity.

At this stage I'm deliberately running them both with extreme settings and driving them hard to discern the differences under pressure. I've been testing using a live acoustic drum loop, a pattern on a (software) 808 and the same pattern on a (software) 909.

Quite happy to run some audio through them for you if you want to send me some.
Paranormal Patroler
If I remember correctly one of them wasn't good on guitar bass action. I'm really interested to check either of them but haven't found the cash or time yet.
visible cow
I only have experience with the RNC and the pbc-6a. I just want to say that the pbc-6a blows my mind. So much character for a relatively inexpensive compressor. Also, FMR is a joy to deal with...
waves_of_awesome
I've had both, still have the RNLA, I love it for drums.
DIVINEAUDIO
I have an RNC and for vocals and occasional guitar it's fantastic. Tried it on drums, synths, and full mixes and swore it was the worst purchase I had ever made. It's true what they say about it freaking out at the slightest hint of bass, at least in my experience. Will get replaced sooner than later.
DKsoundguy
I've had them both and preferred the RNLA - just sounded better to my ears. I like the RNC for very light/non-critical compression (toms, overheads, snare bottom, etc...), but the RNLA had way more character and seemed better able to take hotter signals. Loved it on vocals, bass, snare, mono room or overhead... didn't dig it on electric guitars, but sounded great on acoustics. I find the RNC works best if used very lightly, but the RNLA can give you more aggressive compression effects (my $.02).

DK
KrisM
I love the RNLA as a coloring box for sampling with modern ADCs.

keep meaning to pick up a RNC, too, but just like the RNLA too much.
infradead
i loved the RNLA for running my master outs through when i was doing chiptune drone stuff. have a RNC now for live usage and really like how transparent it is, but prefer no compressor when recording.
neilbaldwin
DIVINEAUDIO wrote:
I have an RNC and for vocals and occasional guitar it's fantastic. Tried it on drums, synths, and full mixes and swore it was the worst purchase I had ever made. It's true what they say about it freaking out at the slightest hint of bass, at least in my experience. Will get replaced sooner than later.


That is true: the RNC doesn't like the 808 kick of my test material under pressure. It sounds a bit like subtle wave-shaping during the release phase.
IR
I was curious about this before too, I got the RNLA about a year ago, never tried the RNC.

I will say that the RNLA sounds much better with the "Log Rel" switch engaged. Without it, it sounds digital, like there's only a limited number of steps for each level category, if that makes any sense.
negativspace
I love my RNC on drums, but in my case that'd be a 606 which isn't a threat to put out much bass energy. Maybe that's why they get on so well. hihi

Almost bought a RNLA in BST a couple months back, maybe I ought to revisit that impulse. The compressor I used to favor for bass/synth - an Ashly CL-100 I picked up for $50 at a pawn shop in 1996 - has recently given up the ghost.
continuum
The only time I've ever had any bass distortion on an RNC was with super fast attack and release with high gain reduction (-12dB or more). Very few compressors sound decent with those settings, so it's no surprise the RNC craps out. I have a Rane that will do stupid amounts of reduction without distortion, but it sounds muffled and grungy compared to the RNC.

Set the attack to noon, and the release past that, use a little bit of gain reduction and the RNC sounds great, particularly in parallel. The RNC just brings up the subtle details in everything while keeping the dynamic range intact. There is almost zero high end rolloff (stellar compared to dbx gear) too. The RNC is cleaner and 'nicer' than any stereo compressor up to 10x its' price I have used, although I have not tried the Overstayer.
C14ru5
RNLA is great on raw and isolated tracks, such as drums, while I think the RNC is better to use on final mixes.

They are both great. I eventually sold my RNLA, but I've kept the RNC.
neilbaldwin
continuum wrote:
The only time I've ever had any bass distortion on an RNC was with super fast attack and release with high gain reduction (-12dB or more). Very few compressors sound decent with those settings, so it's no surprise the RNC craps out. I have a Rane that will do stupid amounts of reduction without distortion, but it sounds muffled and grungy compared to the RNC.

Set the attack to noon, and the release past that, use a little bit of gain reduction and the RNC sounds great, particularly in parallel. The RNC just brings up the subtle details in everything while keeping the dynamic range intact. There is almost zero high end rolloff (stellar compared to dbx gear) too. The RNC is cleaner and 'nicer' than any stereo compressor up to 10x its' price I have used, although I have not tried the Overstayer.


Totally agree with all that and I did say I was deliberately pushing both to see how they behave under stress. Next series of tests will be on full mixes using both of them in a more real-world way.
lmgrovllum
Definitely agree with the knob placement on the RNCs posted above. I think most people that say the RNC sucks out bass from mixes/tracks usually try to use it with the attack and release knobs near zero. Which is explicitly warned against in the manual as well!

Haven't used the RNLA but have been quite happy with the RNC. Will likely pick up an RNLA at some point...
Funky40
I disagree with both " no Bassproblem" posts in regards to the RNC.
Try the RNC not only on Bass heavy but for example BDs alone......you can´t use the RNC for that. my opinion
To me the fever the frequenzy range on signals is, AND the more bassheavy at the same time, the earlier you get into noise problems with the RNC.
The posted settings look even not tame enough to me to get really rid of adding noises to heavy "Bassloaded" signals.
i have attack often more like 1 to 3 o´clock i think.
ratio. 1:2 is ok . 1:4 is possibly allready problematic .
edit: probably i run the signals hotter. could be

i actually have my RNC in the masterinsert out of my Mixwizard,
and at same time also a Overstayer VCA, patched beforehand of the RNC,
so i was easily able to compare both, ......with signals at the same level .

i think the fuller the frequenzy range is occupied, and probably the bass not loaded too much, the less of a "bassproblem" is recognisable on the RNC.

The overstayer can be set up much lesss tame on BDs etc. without adding distortion noises to the signal.
possibly another point is that the noises generated on the RNC are also more unnice.

On the other side i do prefer the RNC as a limiter on modular jams over the overstayer, ......more musical and round on extreme settings.
sounds odd, ......but it is not.
hope my english was clear enough


i absolutely love my RNC for uses with my modular,
but definitly not on "samplegeneration" when Recording BDs, BassSynth sounds etc.
colorsinwaves
Got me thinking. Might experiment with RNLA + RNC in series.
KrisM
colorsinwaves wrote:
Got me thinking. Might experiment with RNLA + RNC in series.


RNLA: lol all the colouring!

RNC: All the nice compressing! LOL!
IR
lmgrovllum wrote:
Definitely agree with the knob placement on the RNCs posted above. I think most people that say the RNC sucks out bass from mixes/tracks usually try to use it with the attack and release knobs near zero. Which is explicitly warned against in the manual as well!
I guess I'm glad I got the RNLA, I used those settings exactly and got great bass.

And I find it pretty transparent too, I guess as much as a compressor could be transparent. They'll all sound like a compressor somewhat.
lmgrovllum
Definitely will nab an RNLA soon!
bubbajaxx
Have had an RNC for ever... always surprises me how nice it is to use vs. a software comp. And true about how it isn't that good for bass.
The side chain function on it is great - for leaning a synth string into a kick for example; really easy to dial in the right amount of "breathing".
16osc
Can you elaborate on your testing procedure. I have a whole gang of cheap-ish compressors that I want to test but I can never be sure that I am keeping the peak levels the same. Even a slight peak increase on the compressed version can make it sound "better".

I'd also be very interested in running your test loops through my cheap compressors for a larger test suite.
neilbaldwin
My testing is not particularly scientific. I load up the test loops in my Octatrack and run the output through both compressors, then feed the compressor output into my audio interface and record them.

Once recorded I normalise the files and compare them both by listening and visually to see what's actually going on (this only really works for sparse transient material as a full mix is just too dense).

Update to the face-off: I'm beginning to think that the suggestion of having both is the way to go - RNLA for aggressive compressing of transient material, RNC for making it all sound nice.

This is not the (financial) result I was hoping for! hihi
xonetacular
necro bump

Need a comp for some hardware sidechaining bass since the comps in my qu32 don't have sidechain annoyingly but they are useable otherwise though not the most exciting. Was planning to get the RNC first but after reading this thinking RNLA is the way to go. I kinda wanted both but not sure how useful the RNC will be now.

I have a dwarmer 1968 for the master bus.

What's the deal with the pbc-6a? some people here said it's amazing but it's weird I can still find zero demos of it after all these years and it's a lot pricier than the others.

will also take recommendations for other hardware comps with sidechain for this purpose that aren't that expensive, rack mount would be better.
acidbob
Only had the RNC and I think it was broken or had some issues, it was so noisey that I couldnt really use it. But at that time I didnt know anything about compressors.
Michael O.
xonetacular wrote:
necro bump

Need a comp for some hardware sidechaining bass since the comps in my qu32 don't have sidechain annoyingly but they are useable otherwise though not the most exciting. Was planning to get the RNC first but after reading this thinking RNLA is the way to go. I kinda wanted both but not sure how useful the RNC will be now.

I have a dwarmer 1968 for the master bus.

What's the deal with the pbc-6a? some people here said it's amazing but it's weird I can still find zero demos of it after all these years and it's a lot pricier than the others.

will also take recommendations for other hardware comps with sidechain for this purpose that aren't that expensive, rack mount would be better.


By “sidechaining bass,” do you mean as one would in a bus compressor (i.e., highpassing the bass out of the sidechain/detector to avoid excess pumping/breathing), or do you mean that house/hip hop style ducking special effect? If the former, the 1968 has a built in facility for exactly that. If the latter, either FMR unit should do the trick, but neither will really be ideal imo.

Been a while since I’ve used either, but as for the difference between the two: I believe the rnc is a peak compressor/limiter while the rnla is rms/average based. Both use a vca for the gain reduction iirc.
xonetacular
I mean for ducking as a mixing tool/effect. I use the the highpass on my 1968 on the master bus.
Plattform
I'm curious about the Real Nice mode on the RNC, some of you could explain how it sounds, and with what kind of material ?

I don't know if I should get it for that mode, I'm looking for a quite compact sound without pumping artefacts, without loosing the drums to much (for the master)
xonetacular
For the RNC there were some posts a while ago about using a cheap passive highpass filter to use in the sidechain with an insert to RCA cable for use on the master bus.

On the master bus I wouldn't go over like 3db gain reduction though. might be alright for that with the highpass.

something like this: https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-Harrison-Labs-FMOD-150Hz-HP-High-Pass-Satel lite-Electronic-Crossover-USA-Made/372140466011?epid=1551007920&hash=i tem56a54cdf5b:g:j98AAOSwzrxUtbfZ&frcectupt=true
Plattform
Yes the high pass/sidechain trick is pretty cool, I knew about it for some other compressors, and it give you a gain control, so with colorful compressor you can deal with compression and saturation independently !

Well I'm looking for a comp that can handle more than 3db of gain reduction, I tought you could compress more with the Real Nice mode, I've heard that if you want this mode to work well, you have to make it compress all the time (so pretty heavy compression) have you tried this ?
xonetacular
I just mean in general I wouldn't compress too much on the master bus. im sure it can handle more if you're going for something different.
Plattform
it's more common than what people think to compress more than 3db on the master, even in professional mastering studios (but often it is done with different compressors in series so it sounds more natural)

I understand that this is how you do it (and many other person), but sometimes forgetting those popular statment and break some famous imaginary rules is good ! That's why before buying a compressor I want to be sure that it can handle a lot of compression if needed.
xonetacular
Well I just snagged both an RNC and RNLA in a funk logic rack, so I'll be able to test them both and see how they do.
Plattform
Cool !
notmiserlouagain
Can only add, I bought a rnla when it came out, and it´s one of the few pieces I still have today, because it´s such a workhorse, so portable, survived countless drops and maltreatments, still sounds good on the mix Guinness ftw!
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