After Multi-band Compressing my Sound Healing album in the recording studio, the next step is to bus compress. The purpose of Bus Compression is the “Gel” a mix and give it more cohesion and solidity. I remember when I recorded my first album in my home recording studio and I didn’t do any bus compression. I always wondered why all of the instruments sounded so separated and now I know.
Recording Studio: UAD Shadow Hills Mastering Compression
I am using the UAD Shadow Hills Mastering Compressor plugin. Here is a great video that shows how to use the actual hardware Shadow Hills Mastering Compressor in the Recording Studio:
Using the plugin is much the same, I just thought it would be cool for you to see the real thing in action. Here is a great tutorial on how to use the UAD Shadow Hills Mastering Compression Plugin for drums.
It seems that with most things the best thing to do when recording studio bus compressing is to keep it simple. There are many presets that come with the UAD shadow hills mastering compressor and a good idea is to choose a preset that is the closest to what you are wanting to achieve and then tweak from there.
I had quite a simple application of the plugin in the recording studio mastering chain for my sound healing album. I basically just used the Optical compressor and turned up the threshold until the gain reduction was -1 on the loudest part of each track. It is a subtle change but brings everything together a bit more and sounds more coherant. It was a subtle but definitely very important part of the mastering chain for me.
This is a great video that goes through each of the controls of the UAD Shadow Hills Mastering Compressor in a review / tutorial. Very usual for understanding what each of the controls on the plugin do.
You can also read a lot more about how to use this plugin in the UAD plugins Manual.