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What's on your master bus? (2 buss processing)
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques Goto page Previous  1, 2 [all]
Author What's on your master bus? (2 buss processing)
Michael O.
Panason wrote:
It's been a long time since I did my music tech course.

Why do some people write "buss" and not "bus"?

In fact, where did the whole "bus" thing come from?


I use it becuase the engraving beneath my Trident’s main VU meter bridge reads “Stereo Buss,” though I think “bus” is actually the correct spelling in this context. Maybe it’s a uk thing, maybe it was only rarely used.

I think the term comes from “bus bar” in electronics.
Panason
Thanks for educating me! I guess it sounds more technical than "group" and engineers of all kinds love their jargon...
induktor
mt3 wrote:
BailyDread wrote:
What's everyone using on their master bus and why?
1. Klanghelm MJUC - Mk1 mode w/ 300 hz sidechain, slow attack, low threshold, med ratio, 9% wet
2. Klanghelm MJUC - Mk2 mode w/ 160 hz sidechain, med attack, med threshold, low ratio, 13% wet
3. Klanghelm MJUC - Mk3 mode w/ 80 hz sidechain, fast attack, high threshold, high ratio, 37% wet
4. UAD Neve 33609 - unlinked mode w/ med threshold, slow attack/fast release limiter; med threshold, fast release, 1.5/1 ratio compressor
5. UAD Shadow Hills Mastering Compressor - unlinked mode w/ opto turned off, slowest attack, fastest release, "flood" ratio, med high threshold
6. Plugin Alliance Maag EQ4
7. [optional] bx_subsynth (for high passing side signal)
8. [optional] bx_refinement (high freq smoother)
9. [optional] elisia museq master


I like and use many of these and similarly.
Curious about the Klanghelm MJUC. Can you summarize what about it you find appealing?

The 33609 and Shadow Hills, agree. Especially unlinked!

"Mastering distortion" is a variation of compression. Try:
HG-2
Culture Vulture
VSM-3

Other stuff to append to the end:
bx_digital V2
Pultec EQP
Dangerous Bax
API 2500


I picked up both the Culture Vulture 20A and HG-2 hardware units this year for my pro mastering rig and am really impressed with the HG-2. It has a really wide sweet spot and imparts a variety of harmonic goodness to mixes.
andrewhuang
Been very happily all-UAD on the master for several years.

Most used:
Precision Maximizer
Pultec Pro
Precision EQ
Precision Limiter

Sometimes also:
Shadow Hills
SPL Vitalizer
Ampex
ngarjuna
For music:
Glue compressor
I've been through several favorites but right now Acustica/Greg Wells' "El Rey" (RCA BA-6A) seems pretty permanently placed for the next while.

Pultec
Everything zeroed out, I don't really like mixing music into an EQ curve unless there's some specific reason to do so. I prefer the Tim P Nebula Pultec.

Other stuff gets handled on the track or bus level not on the two. Eventually a limiter and some eq'ing will happen to get levels up but that's a separate, later process, I don't mix through my mastering chain.

My work template has a bit more going on (post): de-esser, compression and limiting, eq curves, metering and analyzers.
3pand
ngarjuna wrote:
For music:

I've been through several favorites but right now Acustica/Greg Wells' "El Rey" (RCA BA-6A) seems pretty permanently placed for the next while.



I just discovered this company and, yeah, I'm loving El Rey in general and Pink2 on the master bus and everywhere else.

I find their various preamp models are so subtle but also they impart something I can't get any other way.

Mindblowing stuff, to me anyways. (that ebony reverb!)
BailyDread
ngarjuna wrote:
I prefer the Tim P Nebula Pultec.



have you tried the Tim P SSL bus compressor? I've heard it's amazing.
ngarjuna
BailyDread wrote:
ngarjuna wrote:
I prefer the Tim P Nebula Pultec.



have you tried the Tim P SSL bus compressor? I've heard it's amazing.

I haven't, I've been using Sand for SSL bus comp (admittedly not the first comp I reach for but good to have). Sand v1 is okay; they've been holding the release of v2 so I'm hoping it's competition for Tim's, Acqua compressors have come a long way in the year. But I've heard the same, people love that library.

The only two Nebula compressors I've really fallen in love with were TimP's Opto (LA-3A) which is great and TimC's Smooth Bus (33609). They both sound great and have good action.

I'd really REALLY like to see an old 33609 added to the Gold program: the 2254 in Gold2 is apparently faithful (never used one personally) but, for me, it's just not useful for bus duties like a 609. TimC's library sounds very good but it's a pain to use.
felixer
i just use a tc finalizer. does everything i need. but you have to work beyond those awful presets. so you really have to understand what eq and compression are. if you have cracked that, it's a wonderful device: clear, clean and pretty much noisefree ...
felixer
oh, and maybe it is a good idea if people write if they're using hardware or plugins. i see long lists of stuff people use and then, almost by accident, they mention it is all plugins lol not to rain on your parade, but it does make a difference ...
BailyDread
Michael O. wrote:
That is a whole lot of signal processing- is this a mastering chain or is this really what you’re using on the output of your stereo buss/mix buss?

In my work I’ll rarely use anything beyond a bit of subtle compression from relatively clean/uncolored processors (e.g., API, SSL, Drawmer), if I use anything on the stereo buss at all. A mix (pre mastering stage) shouldn’t require much if any 2buss processing to sound good if the individual components are treated properly. Generally anything beyond that is better left to the mastering engineer rather than the mixing engineer.


Just wanted to give an update that I've since abandoned the ready-made master bus processing in favor of a simple UAD SSL into Klanghelm MJUC, both of which are doing <1 dB gain reduction and getting much more natural results SlayerBadger!

Cheesy! spinning cool applause
felixer
BailyDread wrote:
both of which are doing <1 dB gain reduction and getting much more natural results

well in that case you might switch 'm off as well. and obviously you are getting more natural results with fewer/less compression and eq.
still i don't really see the point. i make my mixes so that they sound good. and then use some compression to make it louder. never use eq on the master. you should do that on individual tracks while mixing ... if needed.
Plattform
Hardware list:

-SSL 4000e Dual Mono Channel Strip (Racked), with filter, EQ and Comp
-Distressor El8
-TK Audio BC1 Ltd (SSL like vca comp, with more options, sidechain filters, more attack and release times, and a really cool dry/wet knob)
-TK Audio BC1 S
-Alesis 3630 (doesn't work on everything...)
-Elysia Karacter (I don't always use it, but when I do it is just to tame some peaks nothing crazy)

Then I use some plugins, Fabfilter Eq for little corrections, and Fabfilter + Ozone limiters, I like to limit less but with more limiters, because plugin compression is really audible (in a way that I don't like).
My dream would be the hardware Maselec MPL-2 Limiteur or Pendulum Audio PL-2 but they are super expensive !
Plattform
I understand the people saying that it doesn't really make sense to put all that on the master if you did the mix properly, but I disagree, when you apply things to a whole group of sounds, you don't obtain the same result as putting the same processing on individual sounds, it is risky, but if the mix is good there will be no problem, and eqing into a compressor can give you really good results, and that's the only way to get where you want sometime.

But then it is from a creative/artistic point of view, doing your own music for fun and experimenting to learn things. If you are a professional mixing engineer, and you send it to a good mastering engineer, well yes here I understand.
The Grump
Plattform wrote:
I understand the people saying that it doesn't really make sense to put all that on the master if you did the mix properly, but I disagree, when you apply things to a whole group of sounds, you don't obtain the same result as putting the same processing on individual sounds, it is risky, but if the mix is good there will be no problem, and eqing into a compressor can give you really good results, and that's the only way to get where you want sometime.

But then it is from a creative/artistic point of view, doing your own music for fun and experimenting to learn things. If you are a professional mixing engineer, and you send it to a good mastering engineer, well yes here I understand.


It's your sound. Use what works for you.
calaveras
UAD Neve 33609
UAD Neve 1081 or 31102 EQ
UAD Littlelabs VOG

Sometimes I swap out the 33609 for UAD LA2a and 1176.

I plan on picking up a second LA610 MKII to run stereo outs through a pair.
Might fuck around with mid side.

Oh yeah just started using BX Masterdesk, a UAD plugin from BX. Very nice mid side processing. But its the kind of thing that has me wondering if I am really allowed to move the foundation (low end) and stereo width sliders all the way to max with no repercussions? It sounds pretty sick on my industrial style tracks.
BailyDread
little labs VOG across the entire mix? woah never thought to try that

also never thought to try an 1176 on the mix bus... wonder what the best settings for such an application would be as well.

how do you like to set it?

lately i've been using the API vision channel strip with input cranked and output backed off as a soft clipper on the master bus. really works to give that overdriven mixer sound. sounds great and gives the reverb a lot of cool color, almost like a timpani effect.
nostalghia
Been enjoying using the "Satin" tape emulation plug-in from u-He for last year or so. Generally keep it pretty subtle when used on the master stereo bus.
Interesting to A/B compare with it in and bypassed-a dab of tape-like warmth, compression and noise can really help when things start sounding too "cold and digital".
As a bonus, it can also provide "tape" delay and flanging effects.

https://u-he.com/products/satin/

Satin: SOS Review
mt3
calaveras wrote:
Oh yeah just started using BX Masterdesk, a UAD plugin from BX. Very nice mid side processing. But its the kind of thing that has me wondering if I am really allowed to move the foundation (low end) and stereo width sliders all the way to max with no repercussions? It sounds pretty sick on my industrial style tracks.


The answer is fukcyes.
BenA718
Cool/interesting topic.

Right before my 2-bus, I use four mix buses separated into low, low mid, midrange, and treble frequencies. Aside from bandpass EQ, each bus has an instance of NLS picked for what I think sounds best on that frequency band.

My 2-bus usually has a spectrum analyzer and an 1176 in m/s mode to widen things out a bit.

Overall, a very simple setup. I use Logic Pro X.
xthrasherx
Lately I’ve been experimenting with using FabFilter Saturn and a Waves DBX compressor as my stereo processor. Both are being used for subtle changes with the compressor just helping bring up volume a little and Saturn as a 4-6 band “tape” eq. Nothing drastic in either when I A/B them, but for the time being I’m pretty happy with the results. I’m sure I’ll look back on these pieces next year and think differently though lol
WisdomWriter
i generally use sends for most things. for my master channel i have a little EQ, compression, Limiter at the end to get everything to equal relative levels. I am still learning how to keep the dynamic range without contributing to the loudness war.
needto
Really digging this technique recently:


Filtering out the low end from the sidechain input of the master bus compressor, very easy to do with ableton's glue and the regular compressor as well.
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