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Mono vs. Stereo Compressors

Question asked by cletnick on Oct 21, 2013

I am currently trying to optimize a project to fit all of our required functionality within the available instructions per sample. I am using peak compressors on the output to protect any downstream equipment from out-of-range signals. During my optimization pass, I have noticed that the stereo compressors only use a few more instructions than a mono compressor. However, I would like a little more information before proceeding by replacing my pairs of mono compressors with stereo ones.


What is the difference in functionality between a mono compressor and  a stereo compressor?

From what I understand, a stereo compressor will act like a mono compressor, but also limit both channels if either channel enters into a higher limiting band.


What is the difference in the algorithm used that allows the stereo compressor to use only a few more instructions?

I am not familiar with how the compression algorithm is implemented, but from my assumption above about the difference between a mono and stereo compressor, I would expect the stereo compressor to use about twice as many instructions as a mono compressor. Since that is not the case, I am curious about what is actually using the majority of the cycles.


The exact elements I am comparing is in Dynamics Processors -> Peak -> Standard Resolution ->Lower Range -> No Post Gain -> Mono/Stereo ->No Ext Detect -> Peak. It is running on a ADAU1442.