AES Section Meeting Reports

Tribeca Flashpoint College - January 13, 2016

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Today, we had Greg Norman from Electrical Audio come in to talk about compressors. He is the head technical engineer at the studio. We figured that this would be a great opportunity for students to hear Greg talk because he was going to focus all on analog compressors, which was a nice turn for the students because we are mostly working with digital plug-ins.
Greg started the meeting by talking about the different types of compressors (VCA, Optical, FET, Vari-Mu). He went through and explained how each type of compressor functions and the electronics within each unit. With this, he talked about the speed of the compressors, and why some can have a lightning speed reaction while others have a slower on/off time frame.
After he touched on these topics, we opened the meeting up for questions. The first question asked was what are some ways we can apply these compressors to what we are recording in a creative sense. Greg had some really great suggestions. To start, he suggested a few different types of compressors that he usually uses for specific instruments. He also had some great insight about how to use side chaining with compression as a way to cancel out certain bad tones/frequencies that may be resonant in some instruments.
At the end of the meeting, students were able to ask some questions about other situations that Greg has been in. When asked about his opinion on analog vs. digital, he explained that each medium has great features that the other may not have so instead of being one-sided about analog or digital, he takes advantage of both.
We closed the meeting with a fun story from Greg about a funny encounter he had while working at the studio.
This meeting was about an hour long and flew by. We had originally planned on having Greg also physically demonstrate some of the different compressors we currently have in our school studio. Unfortunately, we did not get to this part, but the meeting was still extremely informational and we got great feedback from other students. We briefly talked about the possibility of bringing back Greg in the future to do some demonstrations of the compressors.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society