Opto Compressor Shootout

VST, AU, etc. plug-in Virtual Effects discussion
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bmanic
KVRAF
8300 posts since 3 Feb, 2003 from Finland, Espoo

Post Fri Jan 25, 2019 6:06 am

sleepcircle wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 6:04 am
of course, this no longer counts as a blind test.
My file doesn't no.. but the original post files still do.
"Wisdom is wisdom, regardless of the idiot who said it." -an idiot

fcamp
KVRer
6 posts since 3 Oct, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Fri Jan 25, 2019 12:12 pm

bmanic, could you test the sonic anomaly SLAX? It's free and it would be very interesting to compare it to the others.

jochicago
KVRist
392 posts since 26 Feb, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Fri Jan 25, 2019 2:34 pm

SLAX by Sonic Anomaly:
https://instaud.io/3dKm

Character knobs left to default. Produced using the same session and GR as the other ones.

fcamp
KVRer
6 posts since 3 Oct, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:27 pm

Thank you, jochicago, time for listening now.

Sparky77
KVRian
858 posts since 29 Sep, 2006

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:31 pm

The UAD Opto comps are very good and in some cases they made the original hardware as well.
--After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.

-Aldous Huxley

SoundPorn
KVRian
568 posts since 24 Jul, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sat Jan 26, 2019 12:06 am

I liked 2 the best, then either 1 or 4, I liked 3 the least, and I like the SLAX more then 3 and.

fcamp
KVRer
6 posts since 3 Oct, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sun Jan 27, 2019 2:30 am

I liked C2 the most, sounds warm, levels the instruments but keeps the voice distinct. Then C1 and the Opto32. C1 levels nicely but is not as warm as C2 and Opto32 is as warm but doesn't level as nicely. Then are the others for me. But don't take me too serious, I am not a professional by any means.

Regarding the levelling differences, I wonder if the real compression is the same although the dials may have shown the same gain reduction. To match the compression sensation of the Opto32, for example, I had to compress a little bit more with the SLAX, 1 to 2dbs more.

jochicago
KVRist
392 posts since 26 Feb, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Mon Jan 28, 2019 5:34 pm

Time for the reveal. Thank you for playing the mystery round.

I updated the original post with the names, and tidied up. Also uploaded the wav file in 16bits if anyone wants to use it for testing, maybe add more compressors.

I also did a test with the Scheps Omni so I added it now for reference. This compressor is harder to match because it is parametric, but it has been very good to me so I wanted to hear it against the other ones in this scenario.

simon.a.billington
KVRAF
1539 posts since 12 Nov, 2014

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:25 am

jochicago wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 2:11 pm
D.K Envelope wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 1:56 pm
opto compressors have a feedback design so
all developer have different curves
I think we are in agreement, we just have different conclusions.

3 of those compressors are direct emulations of an LA2A, so they are using the same approach and aiming for the same character. Regardless, they do sound a bit different, as it is to be expected.

It took some work to get them to match in GR (for all the reasons mentioned), but as close as I got them should be enough to hear the difference in their character. I feel I did learn from this test.

As to their sound, I'm holding my opinion for a bit, as not to reveal the models yet :D
It's still flawed in its approach as no two analogue devices sound alike. The older they are the bigger the variation. This is due to quite a few factors.

SO in the end what you are testing for is not the "best" but what do you personally think sounds better in given situations. You also have to keep in mind that while something might sound better isolated, it only gets used in context. So isolated samples makes our judgement even less reliable.

simon.a.billington
KVRAF
1539 posts since 12 Nov, 2014

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:28 am

jochicago wrote:
Mon Jan 28, 2019 5:34 pm
Time for the reveal. Thank you for playing the mystery round.

I updated the original post with the names, and tidied up. Also uploaded the wav file in 16bits if anyone wants to use it for testing, maybe add more compressors.

I also did a test with the Scheps Omni so I added it now for reference. This compressor is harder to match because it is parametric, but it has been very good to me so I wanted to hear it against the other ones in this scenario.
The compressors in Scheps Omni weren't modelled after anything in particular. You could say that they are brand new and exclusive to the Omni. This doesn't stop them from being any more effective at their job though. Scheps wouldn't sign off on it if they were substandard, or any part of the plugin for that matter.

jochicago
KVRist
392 posts since 26 Feb, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:56 am

simon.a.billington wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:28 am
The compressors in Scheps Omni weren't modelled after anything in particular. You could say that they are brand new and exclusive to the Omni. This doesn't stop them from being any more effective at their job though. Scheps wouldn't sign off on it if they were substandard, or any part of the plugin for that matter.
100%. The more I work with them the more I appreciate what they are doing. Scheps said getting the compressors right was one of the toughest tasks, for me after a lot of testing and use I can see why, and I'm very grateful that they went through the effort. Even when I don't need the full channel strip, I often load up the Scheps Omni for the compressors.

BUT, I would want them to follow the settings a bit more closely, and I'm still missing an auto-gain off button ;)
So isolated samples makes our judgement even less reliable.
I agree. That's why I created a mix with multiple isolations and also pairings of vocals and instruments, so we can hear it from multiple angles. But I didn't do a version with the compressor applied to tracks independently then mixed together, which would also have its own sound.

MogwaiBoy
KVRAF
3035 posts since 26 Nov, 2015 from Way Downunder

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sun Feb 03, 2019 3:07 pm

I think the "anyway, no 2 units sound exactly the same" line gets overplayed a bit, especially when describing away differences between plugins.

How did we decide what the classic Fender Twin Reverb sound was if no 2 units were the same?

jochicago
KVRist
392 posts since 26 Feb, 2018

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Sun Feb 03, 2019 3:20 pm

MogwaiBoy wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 3:07 pm
I think the "anyway, no 2 units sound exactly the same" line gets overplayed a bit, especially when describing away differences between plugins.
Agree that it gets overplayed, particularly in excusing any differences and shying away from any level of comparison. But I've also seen people abuse it on the other end, complaining that a particular tool is missing 1db at a certain frequency - well how do you know that the unit they sampled didn't have that specific curve you don't seem to like?

That's why I worry about matching the hardware precisely 0%. I'm only interested in how a plugin sounds vs another plugin, an how I can take advantage of the characteristics of each plugin for my own use.

How did we decide what the classic Fender Twin Reverb sound was if no 2 units were the same?
Whatever Mike said. Mike being the guy that decides which specific Fender Twin Reverb we model for the emulated version. Probably whichever one he likes best. Same for every other emulation.

CLA loves Bluey the compressor (a blue stripped 1176). Not every blue 1176, not every original 1176. He loves Bluey, that specific unit. He said in an interview, if the studio catches fire he goes in for Bluey, the other 1176s he can buy more.

For the SSL Mixhub, Waves modeled Bluey, not just any blue 1176. If you try to compare that to any other blue 1176, there will be differences. It probably won't sound exactly like a typical blue 1176. But all that matters is that it sounds like Bluey.

simon.a.billington
KVRAF
1539 posts since 12 Nov, 2014

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Tue Feb 19, 2019 4:48 am

jochicago wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 3:20 pm
CLA loves Bluey the compressor (a blue stripped 1176). Not every blue 1176, not every original 1176. He loves Bluey, that specific unit. He said in an interview, if the studio catches fire he goes in for Bluey, the other 1176s he can buy more.

For the SSL Mixhub, Waves modeled Bluey, not just any blue 1176. If you try to compare that to any other blue 1176, there will be differences. It probably won't sound exactly like a typical blue 1176. But all that matters is that it sounds like Bluey.
That must certainly be true as it’s also made an appearance in the new CLA MixHub!!

acousticglue
KVRian
547 posts since 27 May, 2008

Re: Opto Compressor Shootout

Post Tue Feb 19, 2019 7:34 pm

Personally I like the white IKM for simple means but if MJUC is as good or better I would be impressed. I just bought DC8C finally and it is a beast as has been mentioned time and again. Not sure there is much it cannot do

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