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Mixing Secrets by Mike Senior

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CHAPTER 14

The Power of Side Chains

I introduced the idea of dynamics side chains in Chapter 13 but have so far assumed that the level-detection signal path is fed from the same source as the main processing path—albeit perhaps with different equalization. As it turns out, there are sometimes very good reasons for feeding a dynamics processor's side chain from a different track entirely, and many dynamics plug-ins (most commonly full-band compressors, expanders, and gates) are now capable of accepting an external side-chain input.

The most basic reason for using an external side-chain signal is if you can't get the gain reduction to respond correctly based on the signal levels of the track you're processing. So, for example, imagine you have ...

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