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FMR RNC outdated compared to plugins.....?
Old 29th May 2016
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
FMR RNC outdated compared to plugins.....?

I have an FMR RNP. I use it to do stereo recordings of solo acoustic guitar. I also have a waves diamond plug-in pack. Since there is a very cool routing option in the RNP for the RNC, I was wondering if it might be a worthwhile investment, but after using the search function extensively, I see that older threads find it better than plug-ins where as newer threads find the opposite. Did the quality of plug in processing reach a point where there is no longer a viable place for the RNC? Your thoughts?

Last edited by Joost; 30th May 2016 at 09:09 AM..
Old 29th May 2016
  #2
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Hardtoe's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
The RNC is great for doing a little compression while tracking - is versatile and sounds good - you can always do more ITB after the capture if you want to with a plugin - compression usually works better in several stages anyway

Well worth the very low price of admission in my book - I have an RNP & RNC combo I use all the time for peak control during tracking

(I also have a lot of the compression plugs available and higher end pre/comp chains)
Old 29th May 2016 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardtoe ➑️
The RNC is great for doing a little compression while tracking - is versatile and sounds good - you can always do more ITB after the capture if you want to with a plugin - compression usually works better in several stages anyway

Well worth the very low price of admission in my book - I have an RNP & RNC combo I use all the time for peak control during tracking

(I also have a lot of the compression plugs available and higher end pre/comp chains)
Thanks but with 24 bit recording who needs peak control during tracking?
Old 29th May 2016
  #4
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Hardtoe's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
By control I don't mean just avoiding clipping, I mean beginning to shape the peaks so the track sits as I want it to.

Step 1 - compress lightly (usually, depending) on the way in to get things moving in the right direction
Old 29th May 2016 | Show parent
  #5
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joost ➑️
Thanks but with 24 bit recording who needs peak control during tracking?
How about just anyone interested in not having their recordings
ruined by distortion and clipping..

If you're under the impression that 24bit or 32 will save you from clipping the analog stage of your converters when tracking
you might want to reconsider what you know about it

When we speak about 32 or 24bit floating point being "impossible"
to clip we mean internal processing, inside the box.
Analog stages of converters have nothing to do with that,
and surely you don't use compression to avoid clipping,
you lower the input gain and hit them at the right level
(then you can also use compression, for the right reasons)

anyways, the RNC is a great comp regardless the price range
Old 30th May 2016
  #6
362343
Guest
I use a modest level of comp with the RNC on my master insert. It's barely noticeable at the recording stage but things seem to sit a bit better. I may not notice the difference in sound on my monitors, but when I play the track back in various listening environments, the track using the RNC compression (vs none) seems to translate better on more systems. After I record the track, I'll use a modest level of peak limiting at the mastering stage to make the finished track sound a bit more punchy.
I like the feel and sound of the RNC (as well as the small footprint) and would recommend it.
I've also used the FMR RNLA, but I feel the RNC is a superior product. The RNLA added colour, but not in a way that I liked.
Regards,
M.
Old 30th May 2016 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retinal ➑️
How about just anyone interested in not having their recordings
ruined by distortion and clipping..

If you're under the impression that 24bit or 32 will save you from clipping the analog stage of your converters when tracking
you might want to reconsider what you know about it

When we speak about 32 or 24bit floating point being "impossible"
to clip we mean internal processing, inside the box.
Analog stages of converters have nothing to do with that,
and surely you don't use compression to avoid clipping,
you lower the input gain and hit them at the right level
(then you can also use compression, for the right reasons)

anyways, the RNC is a great comp regardless the price range
Actually, I do understand that, but I just never tracked with a hardware compressor before. I always set my levels so that the loudest transients did not clip. I have very quiet preamps, very quiet microphones so noise was never an issue. Maybe I am missing out then.
Old 30th May 2016
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 5 years
RNC does not interfere with transients ( the attack of the snare for example) on some settings like software does. Great tool, not really matched in software. My experience, but also was explained on this board by well known designer.
Old 30th May 2016 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phillip1 ➑️
RNC does not interfere with transients ( the attack of the snare for example) on some settings like software does. Great tool, not really matched in software. My experience, but also was explained on this board by well known designer.
The funny part is that it is digitally controlled, so basically it's a software controlled analog compressor. I had it, cool for transparent tracking, but didn't give my anything plugins couldn't, so I sold it.
Old 30th May 2016 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joost ➑️
Actually, I do understand that, but I just never tracked with a hardware compressor before. I always set my levels so that the loudest transients did not clip. I have very quiet preamps, very quiet microphones so noise was never an issue. Maybe I am missing out then.
The RNC can do extremely fast attack (perhaps not quite fast enough to fully qualify as a peak limiter- but darn close.)
My only reservation (with Retinal's post re tracking 'clipping protection for example) is the speed needed to do that. It's seldom a setup' I'd use to simply shape a track with the idea of getting it closer to 'mix ready. Seems like (usually) two different goals - tracking or otherwise.
Old 1st June 2016 | Show parent
  #11
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Dr. Mordo's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by cyjanopan ➑️
The funny part is that it is digitally controlled, so basically it's a software controlled analog compressor. I had it, cool for transparent tracking, but didn't give my anything plugins couldn't, so I sold it.
This was exactly my experience, except I'd add that the RNC has zero mojo. It's the most boring piece of gear I've owned. I used it a few times and shelved it until I got around to selling it. I've used many ITB compressors with a more interesting sound than the RNC. Most of them, really.
Old 3rd June 2016 | Show parent
  #12
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retinal ➑️
How about just anyone interested in not having their recordings
ruined by distortion and clipping..

If you're under the impression that 24bit or 32 will save you from clipping the analog stage of your converters when tracking
you might want to reconsider what you know about it
The point is that there is absolutely no reason one should ever get up close to clipping with or without a compressor. Even a low end converter will give us for more dynamic range than we could ever take advantage of in a music recording.

So you compressor for tone shaping but there is no reason to ever use one to prevent clipping.
Old 10th June 2016 | Show parent
  #13
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jdier's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardtoe ➑️
The RNC is great for doing a little compression while tracking...

Well worth the very low price of admission in my book - I have an RNP & RNC combo I use all the time for peak control during tracking
I agree with this. I find that the RNC always sounds good where my plugs (likely not as good as yours) take much more work to get to sound like I like them.

Side note, the RNP is a killer bass DI.
Old 11th June 2016
  #14
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edva's Avatar
 
26 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
a real workhorse for the money. Like all FMR products.
Old 11th June 2016
  #15
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Ephi82's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I always found that the RNC gave you uncolored transient control. Exactly what what i want most times to capture the sound of an instrument when tracking.

The FMR PBC is a great "color" "thick" compressor at a budget price point. Love it on bass and vocals when tracking
Old 13th June 2016
  #16
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MickeyMassacre's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I have both the RNC and the RNLA, both I love and use at my home studio while tracking constantly. If I didn't have a home studio I would not hesitate to have them at work along our 1176's, or empirical labs compressors...
Old 13th June 2016
  #17
ZEF
Lives for gear
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
I own the RNC it works well and is pleasant enough. Its as good as my more expensive ones and maybe better than a couple sometimes.
As for comparing to plugs, I like a little going in I guess. My small outboard "strip" is never having a pro mixing board which has the comp and filters , eq pre going in..like the old SSL and Neve boards... so I like to have all the same parts, so a preamp, compressor, I might afford eq ITB.
Old 13th June 2016
  #18
JAT
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Judicious use of compression going in (and colored or not) can help with hitting the red and possible distortion as well as pre-shaping the enveloped.

Yes, one shouldn't need a comp to keep out of the red, but there are always overly dynamic singers or guitarists that crank it up to 11 for the one good take.

But a little compression, just a few dBs if that much, can help even out the sound levels and smooth out the dynamic that help a sound sit better in the mix - stuff we do ITB all the time. If you have hardware and aren't aggressive with it you don't need so much (if any!) digital compression. I prefer more colored compression for tone going in, but I still get the pre-shaping.
Old 15th June 2016 | Show parent
  #19
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdier ➑️
I agree with this. I find that the RNC always sounds good where my plugs (likely not as good as yours) take much more work to get to sound like I like them.

Side note, the RNP is a killer bass DI.
My experience too. I can totally get plugins to sound the same. But it takes longer.

Do I need it? Objectively no.

But things that get the sound I want faster are worth the modest amount of money it cost me.

There is also the near zero latency monitoring I can do with outboard gear. Granted I don't track with huge ratios so I only have a few people with enough critical listening skills and understanding of compression that really hear this, but still, I hear it.
Old 19th June 2016
  #20
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
I have one strapped between my TV analog stereo outputs and my amplifier inputs for uncolored signal control, and it works like a champ for making the ridiculously excessively dynamic soundtracks of modern movies listenable in a home viewing environment, even with fairly extreme settings:: threshold ~-30 dBu, ratio ~10:1, attack 0.2ms; and a lot simpler to connect and adjust than if I were running my TV's outs through a DAW on a PC on the way to the amplifier.
Old 19th June 2016
  #21
Gear Head
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
If you are certain to use compression in your mix, why not shape the signal a bit before it hits the box? You might want to keep it light if you are worried about over-committing. You can always add more later.
Old 19th June 2016
  #22
Gear Maniac
 
Bart Nettle's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
The only difference between itb comps and otb is fluidity. The better the comp the more fluid it is and why otb mixing is still sort after.

But on the way in a compressor is standard for several wildly dynamic instruments to get a better perceived volume on tape less noise floor and tape hiss.

It might be argued it is not so much needed now but one listen to many genres of music nowadays and you hear the heavily compressed effect. I mean it is a sound.

How many singers or rappers actually sing into compression? I mean it is an art form!
Old 21st June 2016
  #23
Gear Guru
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I would try a FMR PBC 6A. A wonderful comp if the RNLA isn't doing it for ya. Never lets me down on the way in and vocalists love it. Bass and guitar good too.
Old 21st June 2016
  #24
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David C.'s Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I think compressing affects the performance. I know I can get a better feel singing or playing guitar hearing a slightly compressed performance in the cans.
Old 24th June 2016
  #25
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Rob Coates's Avatar
 
19 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I find the RNC works best on acoustic guitar when I use lots of it. Medium attack and rel. with around 8db reduction. Also use it exclusively on my own vocals. I prefer to have the color I desire come from the mics, preamps, and other distortion devices, not from the comp. I love the RNC precisely because it doesn't mess with tone in any way. I don't see that as boring, just very, very clean. I have a long list of comps I've had/auditioned, some cheap, some expensive. Got rid of all of them except two: the RNC, and a Focusrite Compounder. I use the one of a kind bass inductors on the Compounder for mixing (It beat out a pair of Pultecs I had for that purpose and were sold shortly after getting the Compounder).
Old 24th June 2016
  #26
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gt_jumper's Avatar
The rnc is a great live comp too, but as everyone has said adds nothing more than what a plug can do. The rnla is another beast entirely, can someone let me know if a plug comes anywhere near the rnla on drums and bass and i will be all over it.
Old 2nd August 2016
  #27
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
I use the RNC and RNLA in tandem with an analog board for live shows & live recording. they are awesome at what they do in the analog world, but if you're talking tracking into the computer there's nothing they can do I wouldn't reach for a plugin for first. OP I'd demo the new Waves BSS comp, it's emulating a fairly clean hardware comp as well and has a slightly different sound to the usual Waves compressors.
Old 3rd August 2016 | Show parent
  #28
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gt_jumper's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by inasilentway ➑️
I use the RNC and RNLA in tandem with an analog board for live shows & live recording. they are awesome at what they do in the analog world, but if you're talking tracking into the computer there's nothing they can do I wouldn't reach for a plugin for first. OP I'd demo the new Waves BSS comp, it's emulating a fairly clean hardware comp as well and has a slightly different sound to the usual Waves compressors.
What plugin sounds like the RNLA? I wanna try it out. Thanks
Old 4th August 2016
  #29
Lives for gear
 
3rd Degree's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I don't own one of these but I owned a fairly transparent compressor. From everyone I talk to who has one, it was very beneficial for 16 bit recording but in 24 bit, it may just get skipped. Most people simply don't use transparent hardware compression anymore, they go to plug ins. For me, when I initially switched to 24 bit, I still used my compressor but I found not only did I not need one, it also just took time to get it right and since I mostly record other people, not my self, I ditched it and don't regret it. Plug ins do it for me. However, I am not against compression, eq, or basically anything during tracking, it just has to add something that I can't get without it. I don't see the RNC doing that, but, again, I don't own one, I am just speaking upon a transparent compressor, and people I know who own or owned one.

I do find hardware compressors combined with software compressors to be useful in general, even if it doesn't have a lot of character. I wouldn't likely add eq to most vocals outboard, unless the vocalist is super constant and I can fine tune it but I don't mind eqing other sources before it hits the converters.

Is it a good investment, IMO, likely not. I would get a plug in to do it's job. If you need it for actual compression while tracking, playing live or the like, sure, but just to put in the chain, likely not.
Old 4th August 2016 | Show parent
  #30
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gt_jumper's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3rd Degree ➑️
I don't own one of these but I owned a fairly transparent compressor.
Which compressor are you talking about?

Quote:
From everyone I talk to who has one, it was very beneficial for 16 bit recording but in 24 bit, it may just get skipped. Most people simply don't use transparent hardware compression anymore, they go to plug ins.
What would you call a transparent HW compressor that "Most people simply dont use"?
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