Otherwise, the peaks will be followed by suppression of the main instrument sound, which is undesirable during mixing. As a general rule of thumb, the faster is the attack time, the faster is the release time, and vice versa. It’s true because a fast attack time is usually applied to sharp dynamic sounds, so if a release time is too slow, the compressor won’t be able to reset in time. As a result, the compression will affect the sounds that don’t need to be compressed, so the whole track will sound float. Please check our professional music mixing demos to hear for yourself examples of proper compression. However, by using a fairly slow release time, you can achieve an artistic effect of rocking, for example, in a drum part. If an attack time is slow, then a fast release time will cause the compressor to stop processing the signal too soon, which will make the compressor almost useless.
Make-up gain – all compressors are equipped with a volume restoring parameter at the output. During mix and master the compression results in the sound being quieter, so it’s very hard to compare the original sound with the compressed one. That’s why the volume at the output is restored by the parameter called “gain” or “make-up gain”. Some compressors have a built-in function of automatic volume restoring (auto gain), which makes the engineer’s work easier. However, this function doesn’t always work properly, so from time to time engineer of the studio of music mastering services will still need to adjust the volume manually at the output.