[Solved] Compression Side Chains

I’ve just been reading loads of tips on compression techniques and a comon one seems to be side chaining. For example putting compression on a bassline and side chaining a kick drum so they don’t clash.

Is this possible in Renoise?

If you send both a bassline and a kick drum to one send channel then apply compression, does it do the same thing?

If you send the bass first, is sending other channels to that send channel Renoise’s side chaining?

Sorry if that sounds confusing!!! I’m not too clued up on compression.

Can someone please help me!!!

Would also really appreciate any links to previous post on compression techniques in Renoise. I have lots of links to general compression sites but would like to know how you all deal with compression in Renoise.

Thanks guys. I love you! :D

I had this similair question a while back:


I haven’t found any good sidechainers yet…

There is a recent thread on KvR that may be helpful to you.


Thanks Ledger, I’ve been playing around with some of those but it seems that it does not reponse to any setting you make. I have say a compressor or a ducking vst on a sendchannel and 2 tracks with a senddevice to it. It does not work at all. The only thing that usually has effect on the volume is gain but that’s it, no ducking, just louder/softer. No release sustain or input level is responding. Also some of the README files state that these vst’s should be used in within a modular enviroment. If they say that I think of Logic and EnergyXT, is this the case?

Yes I think that you may have to use a modular environment. I will have a look to see if I can get this working in XT within renoise as i am interested in this myself…

Had some success with this, will post back when I find the easiest way to do it.

Thanks for all the quick responses guys.
So I take it this isn’t built into Renoise then?

Why not? It’s sounds like such a commonly used function, not just in Cubase or Logic etc but in general music production.

I produce Drum & Bass & Tech House and so finding a technique to stop the bassline and kick drum clashing will help me out hugely.
House producers also suggest using the sidechain technique to produce a pumping sound, essential to many styles of House.

Keep your replies coming guys, it sounds like many Renoise users may also want an answer to this.

We NEED internal side-chainer dsp build-in Renoise!
:yeah: :yeah: :yeah: :yeah: :yeah:

I believe and hope it’s really not hard to emplement.


Did you try it with energxt or something else? Let me know…

I would really love to see a feature that can interact with compressors this way.

Yes it was energyXT

Here`s a quick explaination for bass + bass drum configuration if you are not familiar with XT:

  1. Open XT as an instrument in renoise.

  2. Right click to add a MIDI patcher.

  3. right-click to add your Bass VST and again to add your Bass drum VST. You can use a VST sampler or the XT one. (easier to use a VST one if you have one and are familiar with it. If not the XT one can be used).

  4. Add your sidechain compressor in the same way.

  5. Link as follows:

Master in to the MIDI patcher
MIDI patcher out 1 to the bass drum VST
MIDI patcher out 2 to the Bass VST
The outs from these two VSTs to the compressors input plus a second routing from the out into the extra sidechain input.

(all very easy when you see it :) )

Then the output of the compressor goes to the master out.

5.Now open the MIDI patcher and choose a range for output 1 by left-click dragging the mouse over the low and high values. This is the range in which you have to sequence your bass drum in renoise. Create a differing range for output 2 (higher or lower). This is the range for your bassline.

Now you can adjust the transpose button if needed so your bass synth plays in the correct octave.

  1. sequence your track in renoise using the octaves you set. Adjustments can always be made after to correct/ change.

  2. Adjust your compressor accordingly while playing your renoise sequence. Raising ratio and reducing threshhold should accentuate the effect particularly with a fast attack and release.

  3. Ask Ledger to explain WTF he is on about on the renoise forum if he missed anything vital or confused you with the above… ;) :P

disclaimer: I am no expert on sidechain compression so the exact routing configuration I have given may not be what you are after but hopefully enough information is there to let you do what you wanted.

wow ok I have to sit down for this one… thanks for you efforts to explain how you did it! I’ll try it when I find the time and let you know if point 8 becomes relevant :D

Had a go with energyXT and trial version of otiumFX Compadre:

  1. Go to instrument slot 1 in Renoise. Make an instance of energyXT. Leave it at Channel 01. Open it.

  2. Add the VSTi that you’ll use for your drum(loop). Double-click this VSTi and where it says Rch, change it to 1.

  3. Go to instrument slot 2 in Renoise. Make an alias of the energyXT instance. Change it to Channel 02. Open it.

  4. Add the VSTi that you’ll use for your bass. Double-click this VSTi and where it says Rch, change it to 2.

  5. In energyXT, add otiumFX Compadre (Stereo SC or Mono SC).

Connect like this:

From Master In goes one to each VSTi.

From the VSTi you use for bass, connect it to the first (pair of, if you use
Stereo SC) Audio Input(s) on Compadre.

From the drum(s) VSTi’s Audio Output(s), into the (two) other Audio Input(s) on Compadre.
Thus far, it only works as key input for Compadre, and isn’t audible.

From the same VSTi’s Audio Output(s) to the Master Out to make it audible.

And lastly, from Compadre’s Audio Output to Master Out.

Sorry if it seems a bit patronising to write how to connect everything. Just to be sure no one goes asunder because of lack of guidance and councelling.
Keep in mind that I’m not even sure it’s the proper way to do it. ;)

Using Compadre to sidechain is explained more thoroughly here:

It also has a link there explaining what sidechaining is exactly.

For freeware, you can try the SC version of mdsp’s compressor (I haven’t):

Ok, I tried all this and it does not have any effect. I see the signals coming and going thru EnergyXT. The diagrams make sense and I fiddled with the compressor settings but it is not noticable other again that gain is working. I probably overlooked something. I used Compadre MonoSC and StereoSC and some others… If someone could make a screenshot of the diagram in EnergyXT for reference I could check it (I know I should but I just closed Renoise ;) )

Yes you should :P ;) but here`s one that may help:

I have used a slightly different method here, using jthalamus VST to get the MIDI data into XT. I have written a thread on how to do this here:


You should be able to see how to set up the routing for the compressor though for either method.

Also you can change which signal is affecting the compressor side-chain to your choice, bass or drum.

Hope this helps!

Edit: the image doesnt seem to be showing properly here some times, I will get back onto it in a bit as dont have time at the second.
Edit2: fixed, but please let me know if you are having problems viewing

Is this function implemented now ?

yes, you can do it using the Signal follower meta-device

Yeaaaah thank you so much my friend, u made my day happy ^^

Oh and thanks for the great mods too ;) respect.

Mmmmh, I’m quite disappointed here… I tried to use the signal follower to make my sidechain (or to vocode)… And it seems I can just convert the audio into ‘midi’ control… Not routing the audio signal into the input of a third party plug-in :( :( :(

I hope there is a way to do this or i’ll regret to have invest in Renoise… Reading too fast that sidechain is available… The “trick” of controlling a gainer (or whatever) with the signal follower, I was doing it since many years by the hand, or whit a few copy-paste-edit… This is not what i want…

What I really need is to route audio inside plug-ins, like all the top DAWs can do since long… Maybe I just miss something but it seems i’m stuck…

If this feature is not ready yet, can we know if it is on the Devs TODO list ? If yes when it will be available ?
If not, is there some place to suggest to have it ?

I start to regret my bought already :( for me it was obvious that such a feature should have been implemented since loooooong…

I don’t want to do again this old trick with senderella and energyXT :( :( :( :( I decided to bought Renoise just because I was thinking this issue was fixed.

Sorry to be a bit dark in my thought but i just feel i’ll have to switch, or using renoise as an add-on…

@Davias: you can make suggestions for features in the Ideas/Suggestions subforum.

i’ll tell you up front you are not going to get timing-info on the dev todo-list. i’m sure your feature has been requested before and is on there somewhere, but for various reasons detailed around these forums, they will not let people know what their list looks like, or what the plans for the next release are going to be.

furthermore, a lot of people think a lot of features should’ve been implemented a loooooooooong time ago, and feature X is available in ‘every modern DAW’. this is a matter of eternal debate, and these arguments are essentially what kids used to do with their parents “but Bobby can have an Xbox360 so why can’t i??”. personally, i do not think any feature can be demanded on the basis of such arguments.

if you indeed feel like you regret having invested in Renoise, that is too bad, and i hope you can find a way to work it into your workflow anyway. however, you have still paid about 50 bucks for a full-fledged DAW which misses maybe a couple of things but has tons of others built in. imo, you got a lot of stuff for your quite little amount of money (and i’d hardly call it an ‘investment’) - at least you got more than you will ever get at this price from another DAW. this is, again, a discussion done a 100 times before and i will not go any further into it.

Audio routing as you hope is currently not possible in Renoise.

Much of what you want to do is possible by using some of the internal DSPs and Send Tracks. This does rely on the Effect you are wanting to use only having two input channels though (one Mono Audio, one Sidechain/Effect/Control channel.)

Basically you have to take your audio, mono it (if needed) pan hard to one side, do the same with the audio that is going to create the effect and pan hard to the other side, combine in a Send Track and put through your effect and see if that works.

This is how people have been using Vovoder effects with Renoise for at least the last 5 years ;)