The Case for the Falsely Accused Limiter
He didn’t do it, I swear!
I stand before you today to argue the case for the falsely accused. The limiter is being charged with high crimes of loudness and dynamic squashing.
Even though music is louder and less dynamic than ever, the fact is that it wasn’t the limiter’s doing. He was just a pawn in a larger scheme.
Limiters don’t kill music. Engineers kill music.
Engineers use limiters to further their own sadistic goals of being louder than anyone on the radio.
Sadly, in the battle for the loudest track, everyone comes out on top. And who gets the blame?
The lonely limiter. He’s only there to make your music sound louder. It was never his intention to murder it. He’s being falsely accused for crimes he didn’t commit. He was used, and the killings went on at no fault of his own.
I call on my Expert Witness
I submit evidence #1. Ian Shepherd’s Production Advice. As an expert mastering engineer and chief organizer of Dynamic Range day, Ian knows the dastardly schemes other engineers create to cast the blame.
In a recent article he acquitted the limiter of any wrongdoing. It’s not the limiter that squashes the daylights out of your music. It’s the misguided conceptions of other engineers that using a limiter is the only way to make your mix loud.
Think of dear old Buckley. Buckley was a healthy Golden Retriever.
He was a loyal and happy dog with owners that loved him, but one day he got lost and never found his way back home. He was picked up by a shady sociopath that was more interested in abusing him than caring for him. Consequently, Buckley became neurotic and broken, a rabid dog that gnarled and close to him.
The same happens if you abuse the limiter. If you push a limiter too hard he will bite back. Whereas once he loved the music that ran through him, now he ruins it by crushing the life out of it. If you care for him, he will care for your music.
The defense rests.
Image by: Bryan Bruchman