Focus Comp. A explanation of Focus Comps quirky Non linearity’s.

Focus Comp was one of the first compressors I’d ever released for nebula, If memory serves me correct this was a free product before i’d actually made any compressors at all for sale. The latest release (v3) has some interesting Non linearity’s and features. 3 main points that make focus comp a little different-

  1. The attack is program dependent, this is based on a charging concept like a La2+ or similar. Being that the attack will pop at first when the compressor is not charged. As the compressor is hit with more signal the Attack reaches its fastest point. This can be great for getting a smack and pop at longer attacks. This also means the release re-aligns in the envelope section mirroring on charge, this can be seen on analysis. Simply put this is different from say Bus compressor: Where the attack effects the compression amount more aggressively. Instead the material will govern this part far greater than a bus compressor for example. This I believe Is were optical compressors round attack comes from.
  2. The attack and release is Frequency dependent, The attack and release character will change upon what frequency is dominant. On focus comp the envelope follower will keep a slow attack when bass frequency is dominant and the release to be fast at this point. The opposite is true on higher frequency’s- we get fast attack and slow release when compressor is fully charged. This gives a much more 3d reaction, possibly more noticeable when the compressor sees a drum bus and the hits between different drums is slower.
  3. The detection is a hybridized feedback setup . The comp is feedforward on its compression element yet feedback on the program dependent attack and release timings. This is best of both worlds scenario, it just means no chance of overshoot and the possibility of adding a Look ahead parameter. we are creating a cleaner type of action.

The points above give the compressor a very grabby character, we can get those extreme analog opto pumpy sounds with greater gain reduction but never flat sounding!