Another compressor thread

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by krstko, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. krstko


    Aug 29, 2011
    Cerknica, Slovenia
    I can see many people using compressors and I started thinking ''maybe I should get one''. I went to many music stores and I actually could't find even one xS So again it's time to buy online, but I don't have any ideas what to look for. What I like is tube sound and good punch (mid range, I mostly play rock and sometimes metal).
    Anything you can recommend?

    p.s. I could only find one on craig - EHX Black Finger .. is it any good?
  2. M Sterling

    M Sterling Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 23, 2010
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I would recommend the markbass Compressore for that. Check out this page:

    This guy is the bass comp guru around here
  3. VeganThump


    Jun 29, 2012
    South Jersey
    Just because you see other people using something doesn't mean you should get it. You need to learn about what a compressor does and if it's something you even want/need. Check out the link you were given and read every word on there 5 times, then decide if you want a compressor. I think a lot of what you're going for can be accomplished with EQ and technique.
  4. I use the EBS Multi-Comp. I like it. I've used a few different rack compressors years ago when I had a rack setup. I like this pedal better. I think it sounds great and it's really simple. It doesn't do massive squishing, but I don't need that.

    This comp has three modes: tube, multi-band, and normal. All sound really good. My preference is for the normal setting because I get enough tubiness from my amp. The tube setting does add a tube quality, but it's a bit too wooly for my taste.

    My signal chain is pretty simple... bass -> tuner -> compressor or fuzz-> amp. Also, big +1 to the post above. Try to use your own experience to guide your gear choices.
  5. VeganThump


    Jun 29, 2012
    South Jersey
    That being said, if I did have to recommend a compressor, it would have to the the MXR bass compressor. Aside from having low noise and great tone, my favorite thing about it is the gain reduction LED's. That makes it PERFECT for a noob to compression because you're able to SEE how much your signal is being compressed and this helps tremendously while you're learning about compression and what it does to your sound.
  6. This ^

    But, seriously. You should do some reading about how compression works, what it's good for, etc. Go here:
  7. caeman

    caeman The Root Master

    Sep 17, 2008
    I have been having good success with two Guyatone ST2 comps being run in serial. And they can be found for cheap.
  8. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    FEA DE-CL but there is a line to get them I've had the MXR nice easy to use and the lights are cool I then went for the Empress Compressor one of my favorites great unit but the FEA IMO is just the bees knees and the warmth control really works FEA makes without a doubt some of the best designed and built pedals period. I would also check out Bongo's review like previously stated.
  9. Bang for the buck, it's hard to beat an older (white w/red and yellow graphics) BBE Opto Stomp. But read Bongo's page(s) before doing anything.
  10. krstko


    Aug 29, 2011
    Cerknica, Slovenia
    Interesting, thx for this alot :D
  11. I use a toadworks Mr squishy and it works great, ill never buy another compressor.
  12. brotondo

    brotondo Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2012
    Kimball MI
    I was in your shoes not that long ago. whats a compressor and why does everyone but me seem to have one??
    I can't afford or justify some pedals being over $100
    but i tried on a whim a Moen U-lite compressor $65 new ebay and it works fine. super transparent ,very little tone shaping capabilities, it just evens out my volumes, and thats all i use it for. and similar to MXR, the green LED intensifies to red the more it compresses. it is a subtle pedal, you can't squash the heck out of your signal.
  13. jcerio

    jcerio Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    I love my BBE Opto-Stomp. I have the older one with the red letters and no mustache logo. Simple, transparent, and warm. I do regret selling my old Trace Elliot SMX Dual-band, though. I had a Digitech X-Series Bass Squeeze, but I sold it. Not even close.
  14. For tapping it helps to even out the dynamics between the overpowering nature of the low B on my 5 string and upper chords. Especially since I don't have stereo high/low split pickups.
  15. MatthewC


    Nov 4, 2012
    I am new to the forum and I see much advice above this post. Some of which I agree with, some of which I don't.

    First and foremost, to echo the better words of advice above, understand fully what a compressor is and how it will affect your tone. There are pros and cons with any piece of equipment you introduce to your signal chain, particularly compressors.

    Pros when considering compression:
    It will even out your attack and maximize your sustain.

    You sacrifice the natural dynamics that your fingers produce (and in many cases intend).

    Then, there are different types of comps. In essence, there are comps that are relatively transparent to your tone, but just work the dynamics. Then there are comps that have their requisite dynamic mojo, but also have a coloration that may or may not be preferable.

    In sum, I will say this, which I haven't heard from anyone else: The only way to know what and how a compressor does is to own one. Buy something used and cheap--look on Craig's List in your area--so that way you can turn it around for no net loss. But having your hands on a comp and learning how the ratio, attack, decay and makeup with real knobs is the only way to learn. Comps aren't like a chours or overdrive pedal, where you can be given a recording as a reference and understand straight away what their role is.

    Buy one, try one. Then decide if it is what you need in your signal chain.

    And I second the link to onvilab above; once you understand the role of a compressor, that website will sort out a lot of your options.
  16. well stated...
  17. Me, I would read some articles on bass compression and then get a compressor with visible metering so your ear and your eye can learn together.
  18. MatthewC


    Nov 4, 2012
    That's fair advice. Comps that do not display the gain reduction are immensely more difficult to use, not to mention if you're trying to learn what a compressor does.

    One more thing: You made a mention of 'bass compressors' as if they are their own animal. They are, in fact, not. The low end has the widest frequency of any other rock instrument. Compressors, by their definition, must handle these low frequencies well. If they don't, they are essentially useless. So, to make this short (and as you will read at onvilab) if a compressor works well on bass, it is therefore a good compressor at large.

    If he is in the States, I suggest that the OP find an entry level rackmount compressor on Craig's List. You can find one for under 100 bones, and anything rackmounted will not only have the gain reduction LEDs, but it will also work swimmingly on bass... at least for learning...
  19. The MXR M87 pedal also has great metering...
  20. caeman

    caeman The Root Master

    Sep 17, 2008
    I am having trouble understanding why a visible meter is needed. I have a pair of ears. I turn the pedal off and on while playing the same thing to listen for the differences, and while making changes. It is all part of getting to know your equipment.