Question regarding Threshold and Ratio on a Compressor

I'm currently studying compression and I have it down packed I think minus one issue.

I am able to get the same gain reduction on a signal no matter how high or low my ratio is. If i want a gain reduction of lets say 5dB, I can get that gain reduction from every ratio be it 2:1 or 8:1 just by adjusting the threshold to be higher or lower on the audio signal.

I'm sure you guys would say that what I am achieving by doing that is just affecting more or less of the signal. Granted.

I have a piano piece and the highest peak to the average volume of the piano is a 3db difference. I lower the threshold 3dB from the highest peaks so now my threshold line is just touching the average volume of the piano. I need a 3dB gain reduction but even with the compressor at a ratio of 100:1, it's not even giving me 2dB gain reduction.

What am I missing here?

• How did you calculate the peak-to-average ratio of the piano track? How fast is the compressor reacting, does it react to peaks or average/"RMS", and if averages, how long a time window does the compressor consider when calculating what's "average" at any given moment? en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_range_compression wiki.cockos.com/wiki/index.php/RMS-size – piiperi Reinstate Monica Apr 7 '20 at 7:09
• And from what kind of metering tool or function did you get the actual gain reduction figure. From the compressor itself? – piiperi Reinstate Monica Apr 7 '20 at 8:11
• Given that i'm new to compression, if you could simply those questions, i could answer them and also i feel the answer would be obvious without questions to someone who uses compressors my friend. – SR32 Apr 7 '20 at 8:25
• Our byword here is 'be nice'. Just something to consider as a newcomer! Thanks. – Tim Apr 7 '20 at 16:07
• Hey Tim, I actually have another account but I forget the details. I was the one asking about the physics of music. I may have jumped the gun but its plainly obvious those questions were irrelevant to someone with little knowledge on compression and it felt like a troll move. If hes being sincere and just tone deaf, I sincerely apologise to you piiperi. Nvm, my phone is signed in to my old account. – Seery Apr 9 '20 at 0:31