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Shortcuts for our pleasure #10

It’s been a while, but here’s another useful one for today. Unfortunately it is so new that you can only use this one under Pro Tools 11.

In the process of building, developing a mix to its mature state we use compressors, sometimes a lot, many times not so much, but it is safe to say that generally there’s no mix exist without some compression. I bet you’ve heard it more than a thousand times already but it’s still true that compression is the most overused and abused processing today. And this is exactly why I fell in love with this new helper.

With this reality check we can really keep our compression methods under control, or even better, develop them to use these tools in a better way.

When you’re well into a mix, hit:


Shift+c to bypass all the compressors in your session


Of course it’s not complicated but you may surprise yourself. Obviously the sound of the mix will change, but if the difference is drastic, I mean huge, then you might better think about your habits when it comes to compressor adjustment.

Some everyday mistake:

  • using compressors to clamp down every dynamic element
  • use it for level (louder does not equal to better)
  • over compress elements or the entire mix
  • kill timbre and/or instrument attack
  • bring up noise with incorrect release and make-up gain settings

These are just the usual suspects. Our industry already showed how dangerous a compressor can be used improperly. I’m not against compressors or the process itself, but we should use it with more care and attention.

Good to know that this shortcut bypass the dynamic processors in the session and it works great with the built-in channel strip as only the dynamic section switched off when using the key command.