twitter response - saving sidechain compression as a preset

sidechain compression is a staple of modern production, both as a subtle mixing technique & as a powerful ducking effect. but how to make a preset to use sjidechaining without much set up? well david, as I'm sure you're aware, you can save the sidechain toggle into a preset but there's no way to save the source to trigger the effect. so I've thought of some workarounds that might help you -

one solution is to use auto pan to "fake it":

auto pan sidechain compressor ableton live

with these settings, you'll get something like the pumping effect of the traditional sidechain compressor & you can very easily save it as a preset or default preset. it's pretty great for it's immediacy, but I too often find the results entirely unsatisfying. the curve just isn't quite right...

sidechain compression

this is more what I'm looking for, a classic sidechain curve with variable release time. so how to save this for speedy access? the answer is rather a simple & I think you'll find it quite useful.

sidechain compression groups
  • group the track with your compressor & your muted sidechain source
  • extend the quarter note "source" clip as long as you'd like & copy it into a clip in session view
  • it's also worth collapsing the source's track & making the the group's automation lane as small as possible (to make the group's size footprint as small as possible) 
  • then drag the group to the browser wherever you save your presets.

& that's it! now whenever you want to apply sidechain compression in your set, just drag the .als you saved into your set. then all you need to do is put whatever audio you want to apply the ducking to in the empty track! 

sidechain compression

I made a pack containing the group from this example, you can download it here. I hope that's a workable solution for you, david!

if you have a burning production question, get at me on the twitter - @p_ATCHES