In popular music productions, the lead vocal is often the main focus of the mix and engineers will work hard to impart creative coloration on this source. This paper conducts listening experiments to test if there is a correlation between perceived distortion and the descriptor “aggressive” which is often used to describe the sonic signature of the Universal Audio 1176. The results from this study show compression settings that impart audible distortion are perceived as aggressive by the listener and there is a strong correlation between the subjective scores for distortion and aggressive. It was also shown there is a strong correlation between compression settings rated to have high aggressive scores and the audio feature roughness.
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