Automatic gain compensation

Wouldn’t it be great if one could have an automatic gain compensation for each track, that can be enabled/disabled to that you can tweak plugins hearing the real effect of what you are doing, without being fooled by volume differences?

Something like what this does: https://www.tb-software.com/TBProAudio/ab_lm.html

But simplified. ON / OFF kind of thing. It would continously measure the level before the plugins and then again at the end of the effect chain, and automatically compensate. It should be easily/quickly turned on and off.

I think it would be a game changer. Frankly I don’t understand how come it isn’t a standard feature in every DAW

What do you guys think?

+1

That would be great, and that works fine if thats implemented inside a single plugin, but imagine having a phaser plugin, or a pumping compressor (or both lol) in the inserts slots. Volume will could vary constantly at the end of the plugin chain and the DAW would have to work against that by constantly compensating the gain. I think thats not really possible with 3rd party plugins. Maybe with Steinberg plugins only?

Hey tj99, have you ever used the plugin by topro linked above. Or “perception” by Ian Shepard? I used them both and once you do you realise how well they work. And how indispensable they are. They are not for every situation, like a phaser. But when you are eq-ing and compressing they are invaluable. If your hand can compensate the volume on the fader, so can a plugin. It can use averaging over different time. There is only one huge problem: you need to insert two plugins in your chain every single time. And often you end up not using it because of that. If it was only to click it on and off in the channel mixer in your daw…
Honestly man, try those plugins. It is illuminating to use them. Volume differences trick us into a lot of bad decisions…

I heard about these plugins and looked at some videos on youtube where people where trying them. I like the concept and yeah its really important, but I already have it intgrated in my normal workflow, so I don’t think I would save time using these plugins.
These plugins maybe work well for mastering and referencing tracks, but when mixing, I usually like the sound of an audio track in the mix, or I tweak it and make (big) moves until I like it. And sometimes my unmixed tracks are too quiet anyways, so I bring them up in level by using a trim plugin or a compressor (on vocals i.e.). Having an algorithm which compensates for that would not really help me.

How would you do that if you would like to compensate for gain, lets say, after the 8th plugin? You would still need a plugin like perception or topro? I get motivation behind that idea, I just don’t really think thats thought through the end.

When you are working on a track in the context of a mix (i.e. not on the sound of the individual track) it is as useful. It means you set you level with the fader, and then you can tweak compression and EQ, and the volume of your track remains exactly the same in the mix. You only hear the changes of the tweaks you are making to EQ and compression.

As to your question as for how you compensate after the 8th plugin, that illustrates exactly why this functionality needs to be embedded on Cubase itself (not on a third party plugin, that is going to take 2 plugin slots on each track)

It is not for every occasion, and possibly not for everyone. But my guess is that if it was in place many people would find it much more useful than they thought they would :slight_smile:

+1

Would love to have this as an option. Maybe together with some form of visual VU meter between each plugin.

I’d like to see this too.
This topic has come up in other threads:
Like the OP, I asked for it 5 years ago.
ultradust asked for it 7 years ago.
alexis raised the issue 10 years ago.

I still haven’t bought it. Incredibly, I’ve had bigger problems. I still don’t understand why this isn’t a standard feature.

So we ´re in 2025 already. How could I have missed those last 5 years… :confused: :open_mouth: