The beauty of sheer compression simplicity. The UAD Teletronix LA-2A Classic Leveler collection.
Set the gain to unity, adjust the peak reduction to where you want it. Ta-da! I’m pretty sure these are the compressors that are used “visually” the most. What I mean is that you set the gain, then adjust the reduction until the needle is just touching 2dB on the loud parts. You have now conjured up the perfect leveler, and you didn’t even have to listen. Am I saying to do this? Well, uh, no, uh.
It’s kind of fun seeing how UAD modeled these. Check out the differences. I’m sure if you had a dozen LA-2s of the same model they would all show up with varied responses in these charts.
It’s worth a read to look up the history and “innards” of these. Using light to compress music = pretty cool.
- A kind of cool thing is to mix the same hardware emulations from different companies. For example, use UAD’s LA2A on one track and the IK Multimedia White 2A on another. It’s like you have 2 different pieces of hardware! (Well, sort of.)
- Compress like crazy, then use the mix knob.
- Remember, the Gain control is post compression. It is a makeup gain, not an input gain.
- Try the LA-2 as a mastering compressor. I’m not kidding. And the Gain allows you to bring it up before you hit a peak limiter.