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Enforcer (Stereo Compressor)

Enforcer is Unify's built-in stereo compressor.

A compressor is essentially an amplifier which has one gain value for inputs below a threshold, and a lower gain for signals above the threshold. Like most compressor plug-ins, Enforcer has an internal fixed-gain stage (traditionally called make-up gain) after the compression stage.


  • The blue stripe across the top of the GUI indicates the current gain value. When it is all blue, this indicates unity (1.0) gain, because the input is below the threshold.
  • The Threshold knob sets the threshold in dB.
    • The default value of 0 dB means essentially “no compression”.
    • You must lower the threshold and increase the ratio to hear any effect.
  • The Ratio knob sets the gain applied for above-threshold inputs, as a ratio of the normal unit gain.
    • E.g., when the ratio is 10, the gain for above-threshold inputs will be one-tenth.
  • The Attack knob controls how quickly Enforcer switches to the lower gain.
    • Setting this too short may result in audible clicking.
    • For smoothest response, use the slowest attack time which will work for the source audio.
  • The Release knob controls how quickly Enforcer increases the gain back to unity when the input drops below the threshold.
    • As with Attack, slower release times will generally provide smoother response.
  • The Gain knob sets the “make-up” gain applied after the compression stage.
    • The default value of 0 dB adds no additional gain.
    • The value can be increased up to 24 dB.

All five knobs work the same way as most others in Unify:

  • Adjust by clicking with the mouse and dragging up/down or left/right while keeping the mouse button down.
  • Hold down the Ctrl key when dragging, to make fine adjustments.
  • The label below the knob changes to a numeric value readout whenever the mouse is over the knob.
  • Double-clicking the value readout changes it to a text editor, where you can type a new value directly. Press the ENTER key to accept the change. (The value will be clipped to within valid limits.)

Open source

Enforcer is derived from open-source code originally published by British professors Joshua Reiss and Andrew McPherson, who kindly granted permission for it to be incorporated into Unify.

All of the Reiss-McPherson code is available at https://github.com/getdunne/audio-effects. The revised Compressor code (virtually identical to Enforcer) is at https://github.com/getdunne/audio-effects/tree/master/effects-new/03%20-%20Compressor

enforcer.txt · Last modified: 2023/05/08 18:59 by