Sidechain Compressor

Sidechain Compressor

Buy Now : US $69

VST 2.4 plug-in (32 bit)
Audio Unit plug-in (32 bit)
Windows Vista or later
Mac OS X 10.6 or later

64-bit VST & AU support
coming soon!

Download Mac demo

Download Windows demo

Side-chaining compressors are amazingly useful effects. They are standard issue tools for vocal ducking in radio production, to fade out music when a narrator is speaking. They are also insanely popular in dance production, able to make your whole mix “pump” or “breathe” by following a kick drum.

Unfortunately, side-chaining in software can be tricky. Some audio programs simply do not support it, others require pretty complex routing techniques. The good news is that Sidechain Compressor is easy to use, and works in almost any audio software package – even those that do not directly support side-chaining. It only takes a few mouse clicks and you’re up and running!

[Sidechain Compressor demo by Alexandr Vetrov]


We have completely re-designed our compression algorithm in Sidechain Compressor for a more analogue response. This compressor offers more character, control and flexibility than any previous db audioware compressor (and we’ve built a few over the years).

Smooth sounding compression is possible with very short attack/release times. Sidechain Compressor actually performs wonderfully as a standard channel insert compressor, and by tuning the EQ and Shape controls, you can completely modify the response and sound of the compressor.


  • all-new compression algorithm with great vintage sound
  • easy multi track side-chaining based on db audioware’s Universal Sidechains
  • one-to-one-track or one-to-many-tracks side-chaining
  • elegant user interface with clear visual feedback
  • precision control over the compression response (EQ & Shape)
  • gain control for manual gain make-up or fine adjustment of output level
  • auto-gain with integrated limiter
  • full MIDI control, with easy to use MIDI Learn


sidechain diagram

At the heart of Sidechain Compressor is db audioware’s Universal Sidechains, the most popular and well-tested independent side-chain method on the market. Universal Sidechains let you side-chain in most multi track hosts, even if the host software itself does not have that native capability***.

So when you want to do multi track side-chaining, simply open two copies of Sidechain Compressor, one in your “send” track and one in your “receive” track. Set the plug-in controls as shown below and your Universal Sidechain is ready to go!

Notice that when set up like this (External Trig is on), the “send” plug-in does not compress the audio, but passes audio unprocessed directly to its output. Only the “receive” plug-in acts as a compressor. For full details please see the User Manual.

For added flexibility, you can side-chain from one “send” track to multiple “receive” tracks. Just set up as above, making sure that every “receive” plug-in is tuned to the same Universal Sidechain bus.


If you prefer to control your plug-ins with hardware knobs or sliders, Sidechain Compressor is happy to oblige. Thanks to db audioware’s easy-to-use MIDI Learn feature, it’s simple to map any on-screen control to your favourite external MIDI control surface.

*** Universal Sidechains work with most multi-track audio software (supporting VST or Audio Units) currently available on PC Windows and Mac OS X. However, you should check that Universal Sidechains work correctly on your system before purchasing. Fully functional demo versions of all our products are available for this purpose.


  • VST 2.4 (32-bit)
  • Audio Units (32-bit)
  • News: 64-bit VST & AU support coming soon! (early 2014)


  • Windows Vista or better
  • OS X 10.6 or better


  • Software challenge/response system to key each user license to a unique computer