[Ardour-Users] Current best method for multi-band compression within Ardour?

Robin Gareus robin at gareus.org
Sat Nov 17 19:48:24 PST 2018

On 11/18/2018 01:29 AM, jys wrote:

> I've been out of touch with this stuff for almost a decade... what 
> would be the currently suggested way of doing multi-band compression 
> within Ardour (trying to keep things simple and avoid Jack plumbing
> at this juncture). I'm quite open to suggestions on up-to-date
> replacements for the calf plugins. :)

In the free/libre software eco-system zamulticomp [1] is probably the
best solution at this point in time. If you're using Linux, it may also
already bundled with your GNU/Linux distribution via the zam-plugins

If you're not excluding commercial solutions, Harrison's XT-MC [2,3]
would be the go to solution. It's bundled with Ardour binaries from

Calf's multiband compressor may be nice to sculpt some interesting synth
sounds, but it is likely not very useful for any serious work. The
cross-over filters are not flat (even if the custom GUI shows it as
flat), and there are various 180deg phase-shifts across the spectrum,
easily measured: default, supposedly no-op, settings look like [4].
Zamulticomp and XT-MT handle this correctly.


[1] http://www.zamaudio.com/?p=976
[2] https://harrisonconsoles.com/site/mixbus-plugins.html
[3] https://youtu.be/GL99xDmKoDU
[4] https://imgur.com/a/PpQIZS0

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