The Audio Masterclass Professional Course in Compression

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The Audio Masterclass Professional Course in Compression

This course covers all of the processes of compression, limiting and dynamic processing that are in regular use in recording studio operations. The twelve modules cover the basic controls and functions of the compressor, stereo linking, side chain operation including de-essing, transient shaping and control, operation in conjunction with noise gates and expanders. Applications of compression include dynamic range control, enhancement of individual instruments and voices, and compression and limiting of a completed mix.

The course is entirely practical and is assessed solely on the learner's practical assignment work. Text and graphic support materials are provided as appropriate, and the course includes audio example files demonstrating compression techniques.

The outcome of the course will be an enhanced level of knowledge, skills and experience in compression techniques.

Flexible Learning
You can study the Audio Masterclass Professional Course in Compression online or by downloading all of the course materials to your own computer. The course can be completed in 12 weeks, or you can spread it out over up to two years if you wish. You can work on the course at any time you choose, and take breaks whenever you like.

Instruction
Each of the twelve modules of this course includes a practical assignment project that you can work on in your own home recording studio using digital audio workstation software. The assignments include tasks that are typical of a professional recording environment. The challenges are tough, but full instruction is given, often with audio examples and demonstrations.

Study Methods
This is the fully-assessed version of the Audio Masterclass Professional Course in Compression. Study centers around the practical assignment projects of the course and the assessments you will receive.

Assessment
You can submit each of your twelve practical assignment projects to Audio Masterclass for our assessment, comments and advice. Our assessments are detailed, friendly and helpful. We will tell you exactly what you are doing right, what could be better, and how you can improve. Re-submissions are welcome.

Certification
You will receive the Audio Masterclass Professional Certificate in Compression on successful completion of the course.


Course content

Course introduction
Module structure Knowledge
Notes on file format Knowledge
Foundation content
Introduction to compression Knowledge
Connecting the compressor Knowledge
The basic action of the compressor Knowledge
Compression ratio Knowledge
Gain reduction Knowledge
Setting the threshold control Knowledge
Fixed-threshold compressors Knowledge
Setting the gain make-up Knowledge
Setting the release control Knowledge
Setting the attack control Knowledge
The stereo link button Knowledge
Noise and the compressor Knowledge
Breathing and pumping Knowledge
Side chain Knowledge
De-essing Knowledge
Artistic considerations Knowledge
Methods of compression Knowledge
Diode bridge Knowledge
Variable-mu vacuum tube Knowledge
FET Knowledge
Optical Knowledge
VCA Knowledge
Digital Knowledge
Check questions Quiz
Model answers to check questions Quiz
Audio examples
Female vocal Audio examples
Male vocal Audio examples
Additional female and male vocals Audio examples
Bass guitar Audio examples
Acoustic guitar Audio examples
Electric guitar Audio examples
Kick drum Audio examples
Full drum set Audio examples
Full mix Audio examples
Module 1: Compressor controls 1
Module introduction Knowledge
Threshold Knowledge
Ratio Knowledge
Gain make-up Knowledge
Gain reduction meter Knowledge
Practical assignment project on compressor controls (1) Practical assignment project
Module 2: Compressor controls 2
Module introduction Knowledge
Attack Knowledge
Release Knowledge
Knee Knowledge
Practical assignment project on compressor controls (2) Practical assignment project
Module 3: Compression problems
Module introduction Knowledge
Breathing Practical assignment project
Pumping Practical assignment project
Module 4: Stereo linking
Module introduction Knowledge
The stereo image Knowledge
That the components of the stereo image should not move Knowledge
Why compression can cause an unsteady stereo image Knowledge
Examples of an unsteady stereo image Audio examples
Practical assignment project in stereo linking Practical assignment project
Module 5: Expansion and gating
Module introduction Knowledge
The problem of noise Knowledge
Practical assignment in gating Practical assignment project
Practical assignment in expansion Practical assignment project
Module 6: Side chain
Module introduction Knowledge
Setting up the side chain Practical assignment project
Filtering the side chain Practical assignment project
Controlling the dynamics of one track according to the dynamics of a different track Practical assignment project
Typical uses of the side chain Practical assignment project
Module 7 Mid-Side (MS) compression
Module introduction Knowledge
Practical assignment project on MS compression Practical assignment project
Module 8: Transient shaping
Module introduction Knowledge
Shaping the attack phase Practical assignment project
Enhancing the post-attack phase Practical assignment project
Shaping the decay phase Practical assignment project
Controlling and manipulating levels Practical assignment project
Module 9: Gating effects
Module introduction Knowledge
Setting up the external key input Practical assignment project
Triggering the gate with an external key Practical assignment project
Shaping a continuous sound source into a rhythm Practical assignment project
Module 10: Dynamic range control
Module introduction Knowledge
Simple compression Practical assignment project
Look-ahead limiting Practical assignment project
Parallel compression Practical assignment project
Automation as an alternative to compression Practical assignment project
Module 11: Warmth in compression
Examples of vacuum tube emulating compressors Audio examples
Examples of hardware compressors Audio examples
Practical assignment project on warmth in compression Practical assignment project
Module 12: Parallel compression
Module introduction Knowledge
Setup for parallel compression Practical assignment project
Compression settings Practical assignment project
Comparison between uncompressed and parallel compressed signals Practical assignment project
Detailed comparison of peaks and low levels Practical assignment project
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What our students say about Audio Masterclass courses

You did a great job!

Excellent material, audio and videos are really good and clear.

I appreciate the depth, very informative and useful. I increased my knowledge in the area I am so passionate about. I was able to implement a lot of new procedures in my own sound and musical projects.

My gratitude and best regards

Anton Strecky, Slovakia

With my employment in health service established years ago, music and recording is an essential withdrawal from professionalism to me, rather than a significant possibility to provide a supplement to earned income. But with growing interest and investment, achievement of professionally acceptable quality became a must. At that point studying at Audio Masterclass had only pros and no cons to me, and no equally accessible alternatives of world-class standards.

The book "How to set up a Pro Home Recording Studio" [by Audio Masterclass] and other information concerning hardware and software helped me to find "my way" in the jungle of possibilities, and it actually had a money saving effect.

Assessments of practical assignment projects were of especially great importance to me. It is easy for the beginner like me to have an illusion that the produced work is good, while actually it is not. Additional valuable information can be derived from individually provided comments too.

It is very comforting to have tons of audio examples at hand. Even after the course I use some of them as benchmarks of specific quality.

The most special experiences along the way of the course were moments of approaching the presumed limits of creative possibilities… stepping beyond… and finding that there is something more out there. And this kind of training may have implications that are not immediately obvious, but may prove to be of great importance in any intellectually demanding/competitive situation of life. All in all, I consider that to be my greatest gain achieved at Audio Masterclass.”

Egidijus Nemanius, Lithuania

Hi David [Gatis refers to David Mellor, Course Director of Audio Masterclass], I very happy that I signed-up for your course and that I've graduated it!

Actually, before I made my mind, I did a lot of research on web about your course, because at that time I just finished my studies at America Audio Insitute, but I felt like it's not enough for me to get on next level - as I wanted it so much. So I found Audio Masterclass. I found just one review on google, where somebody told that: "you won't get what you as an engineer really need etc, it lacks of deep dive in subject... this and that...." - I thought to myself: "well... maybe this guys is all wise or he is not opened for new experience and knowledge, or he was a bad student". So I decided to take a risk as I had no clue what is will look like.

The first thing that made most sense to me is practical assignment - that is "everything"! But in many other online-schools (like America Audio Insitute or Detroit Recording institute), it's the biggest defect of the program. If you can send your material for constructive feedback, it's the most valuable learning point!

Next thing: Every time I got feedback on task, at first I started learn it with your written feedback - that had greatest value to me. Another great thing is that by reading your feedback, you really get this feeling that somebody is listening to your work and paying attention to details.

About content: the structure of the course is very similar to many other courses but the difference in content is huge! And by this I also mean the language - how you explain things and details. This is very important to me as I'm not comming from english speaking country, but here it's easy to perceive the information. There are many great recording engineers out there, but not everyone has capability to teach others - but you can teach! (and I mean it, especially if I compare with my previous courses on America Audio Insitute Detroit Recording institute).

Other student audio examples: - very good in understanding what to do, and what to avoid! Sometimes if you have nothing to compare your work with, then you might think that "oh, yeah, great record!", but when you start to listen to others ...hmmm.... it become a challenge - it's like setting benchmark.

And yes, for me, as a small studio owner, has no huge budget or possibility to try out some top-end mics, the files with pre-amp and mic samples are awesome - now I have an idea how U87 sounds! : )

About improvements - actually I don't have anything to add to this, because from all this course I can feel that it's all made with professional attitude.

Overall - I've learned a lot, but most important to me is that by having many "aha" moments, I've developed completley different mindset when I start to think about recording, mixing and mastering - for me, it's the biggest achievement! ...and I want to learn more!

Ok, again, thanks for everything - I got the certificate - it's a very important milestone for me towards my GRAMMY! : )

P.S. I've already decided, to save some money and enroll to your professional courses within few month, so see you soon!

P.S.S. I've also attached my picture from my home studio.

All the best.

Gatis Pastars, Latvia

“I have to thank you and your team for helping me better understand the complex, and sometimes difficult to discover, secrets of audio engineering ! I'm very happy with my choice of enrolling in your captivating and well structured course !

Thank you and best wishes.”

Tudor Rogoz, Romania

This course is for you if...

  • You listen to pro recordings and think to yourself, "Why don't mine sound like that?"
  • You want to master all of the techniques of the recording studio
  • You want to get the utmost out of your equipment and software
  • You want to save money by realizing it's all down to your knowledge, skills and experience - you don't need more equipment
  • You want to be sure that your production skills allow you to get the best from your musical creativity
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About Course Designer David Mellor

Course Designer David Mellor

David Mellor is the founder and Course Director Audio Masterclass, currently residing in the beautiful countryside of Oxfordshire in the United Kingdom. He has worked in audio education since 1986 in hands-on training, lectures and online. David Mellor holds the degree of B.Mus (Tonmeister) from the University of Surrey where he studied music, piano performance, acoustics, electronics, electro-acoustics and recording.

Live Sound and Recording Engineer
David Mellor worked as theatre sound engineer at London's Royal Opera House, with activities including sound design, front-of-house operation, stage monitoring and electronic design satisfying the likes of Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Karlheinz Stockhausen. David Mellor toured with the Royal Opera Company to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles, USA; the Odeon of Herod Atticus, Athens, Greece; the Sejong Center, Seoul, South Korea; the Bunka Kaikan, Tokyo, Japan.

Musician and Composer
Since 1985 David Mellor has had more than 1000 works published in the field of production music, including the Chappell and Carlin music libraries (now combined into Universal Publishing Production Music) and his own music library for which he has produced seventeen compact discs. Notable uses of his music include the BBC's Horizon, Fahrenheit 911, and The Oprah Winfrey Show.

Writer and Educator
David Mellor has been actively involved in Audio Education since 1986, teaching students of City of Westminster College and Westminster University, and also returning to lecture at Surrey University. He has also written for magazines including Sound on Sound, Audio Media, Studio Sound, Sound & Video Contractor. He has also written four books on audio and video technology. David Mellor now specializes in online audio education and has been Course Director of Audio Masterclass since 2001.

Enroll now $555

All of our courses have a 30-day no-questions-asked, full-refund guarantee