I love the sound, or lack thereof, of VCA compression. For years the Keeley Bassist has been a reliable part of my board. But last week I learned about the Becos CompIQ Mini. I bought it right away and it has replaced the Keeley as the "always-on" compressor on my board. Here's what I found: - They both use the same THAT 4320 chip, and they sound very similar. There's no dramatic difference in the sound of either pedal. The Keeley makes my transients sound fantastic, and the Becos does too. They're both completely transparent, low noise, low distortion, no real color to speak of. - Basic controls are the same: Threshold, Ratio ("Compression" on the Keeley) and Gain. Dialing in a similar compression template is a breeze. - Becos has a switchable sidechain filter. According to the manual, the "normal" mode already attenuates frequencies below 1k, allowing lower frequencies to pass through unaffected. However in "deep" mode, "more of the lower end frequency (an additional [email protected]) is freed up to prevent triggering compressor kicking in too early". In deep mode my low end remains strong and it makes all of my pedals down the chain sound better. Again, I suspect the Keeley does something similar, since that pedal has no loss of low end to speak of, but with the Becos set to deep my low end just seems fatter. Maybe this is an auditory illusion on my part? Or maybe the sidechain on the Becos is allowing more of my low end to pass through? - Metering on the Becos shows gain reduction with significantly more clarity and specificity. This is huge for me. I'm colorblind, and the green/red indicator LED on the Keeley drives me insane. These colors look identical. The Becos has a 5-LED gain reduction meter which gives me much more insight into what exactly the pedal is doing. - Attack time - I can choose between "slow", which sounds similar to the speed of the Keeley, and "fast", which is a much more dynamic squeeze and will work well if I ever want to use this with my guitar. - Soft vs Hard knee - This switch is a pain in the ass to access on the Becos, but the Hard option combined with the fast attack setting gives this pedal more power as a limiter. It also sounds good if I really want my transient to pop. Soft combined with a slow attack makes transient sound subtle, complex and creamy, and it's the setting I see myself using most. - Wet/Dry blend - Another giant plus for the Becos. One studio trick I love is using a Dbx160 plugin to smash my drums or my bass, and then adding the dry signal in parallel. On the Becos I can get silly with my threshold/ratio, giving myself a strong, exaggerated transient, then mix in some dry signal to make it sound more like a natural part of my tone. This makes the Becos a much more flexible bass compressor than the Keeley. - Microscopic footprint - How Becos got all of this into such a small enclosure is magic. This thing is TINY. So yeah that pretty much covers it. The Becos is now my go-to. Anyone else try these two pedals back to back?