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Twenty Questions: Dynamic Details

Test your knowledge of compression in various applications in our latest pop quiz.

Go ahead and see how much you really know or don’t know about Compression.

This mini-test gets progressively more difficult and is a good indicator of where you stand in this area of pro audio science.

Rick Kreifeldt, Harman Professional SDIG Vice President, has graciously guest authored a dynamics processing inspired Twenty Questions.

There is one correct answer for each question. Good luck!


1.) What does a Compression Ratio of 4:1 mean?

A.) Once past the threshold, the input signal must increase by 4 dB for the output to increase by one dB.
B.) Once past the threshold, the output signal will be 4 dB less than the input signal.
C.) Once past the threshold, the compressor will have 4 dB of gain reduction.

2.) Compressor attack time is defined as:

A.) The time it takes for the compressor to come out of gain reduction.
B.) The time it takes before the compressor starts gain reduction.
C.) The time it takes for the compressor to enter full gain reduction.
D.) None of the above.

3.) Signals below the compressor threshold pass through without being compressed:

A.) True
B.) False

4.) If a compressor is showing 10 dB of gain reduction and you add 10 dB of makeup gain, lower level signals below the threshold will be:

A.) Reduced by 10 dB.
B.) 10 dB louder.
C.) 20 dB louder.

5.) Signals below the threshold of a downward expander are:

A.) Passed through without any gain reduction.
B.) Reduced by the downward expander ratio.
C.) Made louder by the expansion ratio.

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