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Any difference between guitar and bass compressors

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by exiii, Jan 23, 2012.


  1. I searched. I couldn't find jack.

    I would assume that there is very little difference between compressor pedals for guitar and bass, but realize I may be completely wrong.

    I'm looking at the Akai Custom Shop Analog Compressor for cheap ($62), but there is no mention anywhere of using it with a bass. Am I silly for considering it?
     
  2. grygrx

    grygrx Lookout! Here comes the Fuzz! Supporting Member

    Dec 24, 2003
    Columbia, MO
  3. Biggbass

    Biggbass

    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    Hmmm.... My old CS-2 works just fine for bass.
     
  4. thanks for the link grygrx. Good quick info in your comment too Biggbass. TY
     
  5. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    All pedals work for bass. Whether they sound the way you want is another story.
     
    javi_bassist likes this.
  6. That's what I assumed in my OP. Thanks.
     
  7. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    You also said "I assume there is very little difference..." which isn't true.
     
  8. Well, I suppose I could also run my bass into a wet piece of wood and either like the sound or not. So if you have some knowlwdge about how bass-specific compressors differ from studio or guitar-specific compressors that wasn't explained in Grygrx's link, i'd love to hear it. General trends is fine. Of course, if you really have no info to add, condescension is a little unwarranted.
     
  9. I don't know all the designs behind bass-centric compressors, but if I would design one, it would be more like a multi-band compressor. Then again I would export that multi-band design to the knobs so I could select the compression for let's say low-end, mid-range, and high-end.
     
  10. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    These are the factors:
    1) low-end loss. Some comps really do roll off the low end.
    2) lack of control over the envelope. Guitars typically just need a general "squeezing", and the envelope and threshold of the compressor are not so important--largely because guitarists tend to think of these boxes as inherently "good" or "bad", rather than thinking the boxes are simply not designed well. Basses OTOH have special needs. They have much more dynamic signals, and their output peaks can be much higher, and bassists have very specific desires for how their signal is controlled.

    There are a few comps for bass that are good without having a lot of controls, but that is because they are pre-set by the designer to be suitable for an average bass signal.
     
  11. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    There are a few two-band ones that offer this degree of control, such as the pedals by FEA. The only 3-band pedal I can think of ATM is the TC Nova Dynamics, and it did not offer quite as much control per band. There are a few multi-band rack units out there if you wanted to go that route.
     
  12. Thank you Bongo. That strikes very close to the point of my question.
     
  13. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    I was just pointing out that your assumption that all comps are the same was incorrect.
    Bongo's website explains pretty much anything you would need to know, there is no point in me rehashing it.
     
  14. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    In the case of Exar, for example, the only difference between a guitar pedal and a bass one is the frequency center of the tone knob. :)
     
  15. UVMockingbird

    UVMockingbird

    Nov 5, 2017
    I don't think either one of your answers were very helpful
     
  16. Biggbass

    Biggbass

    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    Compressors compress...
    next quesiton
     
  17. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Sorry. This was almost 6 years ago.

    What do you want to know?
     
  18. warrplayer

    warrplayer

    Apr 16, 2008
    Charlotte, NC
    Probably just checking to see if you are atill paying attention. :)
     
    96Brigadier and Dave W like this.

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