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"Best" connection for rack components?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by rockindoc, Mar 23, 2003.

  1. rockindoc

    rockindoc Daily Lama

    Jan 26, 2002
    Bonham, Tx
    Suggestions for connecting an F1-X preamp, a Rane DC24 compressor, and a Symetrix 551E parametric equalizer?

    "Rane Note 130" says inserting the compressor into the effects loop of the preamp can be desirable with tube preamps (i.e. the F1-X). So, if using the Rane's Combine and Dual mode, do I effects send from the F1-X to the Rane Channel One, then out from Rane Channel Two to effects return?

    The Rane Note also mentions the Side Chain loop of the compressor can be used to patch in an equalizer. A thread search didn't find any mention of this connection. Some prefer the EQ before the compressor, and some prefer it after. I don't really understand how the Side Chain connection is made, or where it puts the EQ in the signal chain.

    Thanks to anyone who will hold my hand and walk me through this :confused:
  2. rockindoc

    rockindoc Daily Lama

    Jan 26, 2002
    Bonham, Tx
    I'll rephrase the question. Those of you who have a preamp-compressor-equalizer, what's your signal chain preference?
  3. i have a dbx compressor in the fx loop.

    last i knew all dbx (and most other brands of rack compressors as well) sends a LINE signal as opposed to an instrument level signal.
  4. redneck2wild


    Nov 27, 2002
    Memphis, TN
    The order depends on what you are after.

    If you want the compressor to clean up or even out your playing then it needs to go first in the signal chain.

    If you want the compressor to "limit" the output to the poweramp (to protect the speakers) then you want it last in the signal chain (before the poweramp).

    A tube preamp will compress a signal somewhat so you may not need to have the compressor before the preamp. But if you are clipping the input to the preamp you may want to either decrease the gain or put the compressor in front of it.

    Personally I would put the parametric EQ after the preamp to tweak any tones based on a room or gig environment.

    If the compressor is a stereo compressor and you are running full range, you may want one channel before the preamp (with just slight compression - maybe 2:1 ratio) to even out notes going to the preamp and the other channel after the EQ to limit the signal going to the poweramp.

    If you are running a biamp rig and the compressor is a stereo compressor, you may want one channel compressing the highs and another compressing the lows right before the poweramp.

    My preamp (ADA MB-1) has a compressor built-in that is in the signal chain before semi-parametric EQ but after the Tube stage. I also use a single channel compressor on the Lows of my biamp setup to protect my speakers. I sometimes clip the input of the preamp if using an active bass.