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Bettermaker Mastering Compressor
Old 28th February 2021
  #1
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🎧 10 years
Bettermaker Mastering Compressor

Bettermaker Mastering compressor: How does this sound? Which Vca compressor can we compare to this? I have not found a single thread or review regarding the BMC.
Old 6th March 2021
  #2
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🎧 10 years
B.U.M.P
Old 4 weeks ago
  #3
Here for the gear
 
Bump
Old 4 weeks ago
  #4
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macc's Avatar
 
Verified Member
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Ok, I wanted to write more about this comp but here we go.

I've had it for about 6 months I think. It's growing on me.

The sound: In BM mode it is a classy, transparent, non-hyped, clean compressor, not very exciting but it can make things happen if you want. I have to say, I really really like the sound. The RMS mode is great.

If you want a bit more snap/edge to things then SG (SSL) mode is good. It doesn't sound exactly like any SSLs I've used but then they all sound different, and it's certainly in the right family. I've not really used the DX mode but it might come in handy some day.

The features are really very good, parallel, the clipping/VCA THD have all been used at some point albeit in very small quantities, but they can give you something extra if you need it.

It has some major drawbacks though, all of which relate to the software / handling side of things.

For example, no linked parameters. This is a MAJOR oversight. Running dual mono and want to change something in the L channel? Don't forget to change it in the R channel! Yes, that includes gain, threshold.... whatever. The workaround is to switch to stereo mode and then back to whatever mode you were in before. But if you have say, 1% more THD in the sides, then you have to turn up the THD in the M, then switch to the S channel, then to the THD % and turn it up one. Don't accidentally turn the wrong knob though! *tears hair out*

This is a balllllllllllllllllllllllllllache, and really *really* takes all the fun out of it. And that's kind of my main reservation about this unit - it sounds great but it's just not a lot of FUN to use. My trusty old Summit DCL200 has 4 knobs I move, I can get a groove happening and be dancing in about 3 seconds. Not here. Even turning down the threshold all the way to smash stuff and get timings that work nicely with the material takes an age, even with the unnecessarily HUGE threshold knob.

Therefore the way I'm using it is like a plugin: build a bank of presets that work on a more general basis, and then see which one works best on a track, and then go from there. Again, no fun. I said somewhere else that with all the pages and menus and looking at the touchscreen etc, it feels like mastering with Excel or something.

The plugin looks like a VST 1.0 Neon era GUI, and handles much the same. It's pretty poor and needs a lot of work *cough Bettermaker, look at what WesAudio are doing cough*. I really really do like the ability to have one overall setting for an LP but change certain parameters via automation. Recall is great obviously, but another MAJOR oversight is not being able to have multiple instances open on your system. That is, if you have more than one instance (by accident or whatever) then whichever plugin was instantiated first takes control (I think).

It desperately needs a control (automatable please!!) to assume control of the hardware, exactly like the TC Clarity M has. I've had some major pain in the arse moments where I have numerous windows open doing other stuff, eg Reaper render queue. One of them has a BM plugin in. I change stuff on the hardware in the session I'm working on, and when the background project has finished rendering and closes, the HW settings revert to the now current project, so I have to redo it all. Gahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Ok, it's my fault, but there's not even the option to take over. So that needs looking at.

All that said, I like it more the longer I have it. Very generally, it does slight tonal control with the SC tuning, and parallel duties. But it has been my only comp on some stuff.

So, sound and feature wise it is great. In terms of balancing / how it plays with other gear, I have reservations but that's because of my esoteric taste. I just wish it had more muscle for driving other gear. In terms of the handling, it's just zero fun. But it will get better with soft/firmware updates - a major plus of the architecture.

For me, it's more like a really (really) nice sounding plugin than an analogue compressor. Maybe that's the way they meant it, and I'm just an analogue person. But it's certainly an excellent unit, regardless of my quibbles.

Last edited by macc; 4 weeks ago at 08:41 AM..
Old 3 weeks ago
  #5
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macc's Avatar
 
Verified Member
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
As a follow up...

So I read this again and I wrote it when I'd had a tough day. I thought maybe I'd been a bit harsh, cos I do really like it.

But then I remembered something else; certain settings don't stay the same when just switching compressor modes.

Example: you're doing parallel compression with a threshold of -35dB, with the BM comp. All the A/R and SC settings are setup just right. You think, I wonder if the SSL would sound better? So you hit the SSL mode. Except now the threshold jumps to -5dB or whatever the default is / whatever it was saved at before, and the attack and release settings jump to something else. The sidechain settings remain the same though. So now you have to set the T/A/R for the new mode, and if you're doing that in MS or dual mono you have to do it all (including change modes) for both channels. Or switch to stereo, set it all up and then switch back to MS/dual.

Urrrghhhhhhh.

I get that each compressor mode will react differently, but only having to adjust one thing (threshold) to compensate would be a lot more logical.

It's stuff like this that stops me from giving it a huge thumbs up. Another one to get fixed in the software. Which reminds me, I did start emailing them about this a while back... I'll get back onto them.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #6
Gear Nut
 
Very interesting macc ! Have you compared the BM Mcomp to the Wes Ngbus , i know software of NG is unbeatable , but how about the sound ? Thanks !
Old 2 weeks ago
  #7
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macc's Avatar
 
Verified Member
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I had the Wesaudio right before I had the Bettermaker. Way way way better plugin integration, but sonically it wasn't really suitable for 'all day every day' mastering.

It's a very forward sounding SSL type. Alllllmost aggressive. The BM is smoother and more relaxed/classy.

I think of the Wesaudio as a really great bus comp for mixing into, the Bettermaker is definitely more of a mastering compressor.
Old 1 week ago | Show parent
  #8
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teebaum's Avatar
 
Verified Member
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by macc ➑️
I had the Wesaudio right before I had the Bettermaker. Way way way better plugin integration, but sonically it wasn't really suitable for 'all day every day' mastering.

It's a very forward sounding SSL type. Alllllmost aggressive. The BM is smoother and more relaxed/classy.

I think of the Wesaudio as a really great bus comp for mixing into, the Bettermaker is definitely more of a mastering compressor.
thanks for your feedback - i'm surprised i haven't heard anywhere else about how aggressive the dione is - i couldn't agree more.
the dione can be a blessing in some cases, but in the large majority of cases it is far too extreme.
it has its place in my setup, but not as the only vca, but as one of 5.
the bettermaker is much more universal and grips well, but has IMO not the most elegant release in the world, that can dramastic audio and TKaudio better.
but each has its strengths and its basic sound.
Old 1 week ago
  #9
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teebaum's Avatar
 
Verified Member
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
meanwhile i found the strength of the bettermaker - dancemusic.
for this, the precisely adjustable times are helpful and you can then let it pump nicely and support the groove - and mix it in slightly.
he can do that better than dione, xpressor, tk & obsidian.
so each has its strengths.
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