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How to Properly use Compression to Craft the Perfect 808

An 808 bass is a type of bass sound that is commonly used in hip-hop, trap, and EDM music. It is named after the Roland TR-808 drum machine, which was first released in 1980 and is known for its deep and powerful bass sound.

In order to create a professional sounding 808, one key element is proper compression. Compression is a technique used to reduce the dynamic range of a sound, which can help to make the 808 sound more consistent and punchy.

Here are a few tips on how to use compression to create a professional sounding 808:

  1. Use a compressor with a high ratio: A high ratio means that the compressor will apply more compression to the sound. This can help to make the 808 sound more consistent and punchy.

  2. Experiment with the attack and release settings: The attack and release settings on a compressor determine how quickly the compressor responds to changes in the sound. A fast attack and release can help to make the 808 sound more punchy, while a slow attack and release can help to make the 808 sound more sustained.

  3. Use parallel compression: Parallel compression is a technique where the original sound is mixed with a heavily compressed version of the same sound. This can help to add more punch and consistency to the 808 sound without losing the dynamic range of the original sound. Check out our article on using parallel compression on an 808 here to learn more about this technique!

  4. Experiment with different compressor types: There are many different types of compressors available, each with its own unique characteristics. Experimenting with different compressor types can help you find the one that works best for your 808 sound.

  5. Use EQ to shape the sound: EQ can be used to shape the sound of the 808. For example, using a high pass filter can help to remove any unwanted low-end frequencies, while boosting the mid-range frequencies can help to make the 808 sound more punchy. Check out our article on how to EQ an 808 here!

  6. Use sidechain compression: Sidechain compression is a technique where the compressor is triggered by a different audio source. This can be used to create a "pumping" effect with the 808 where it ducks or fades out when the kick drum hits.

It is important to note that the above tips are general guidelines and the best way to get a professional sounding 808 is to experiment with different techniques and settings until you find what works best for you and the track you are working on.


Additionally, you can also use different techniques such as layering different 808 samples, adding distortion, or using reverb to add more character to the sound.

In summary, using compression is an essential part of creating a professional sounding 808. By experimenting with different compressor settings, using parallel compression and EQ, and using sidechain compression, you can achieve a punchy, consistent, and powerful 808 bass sound.


Happy mixing!

 

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