Diamond Bass Comp for warmth vs Empress Comp for control

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by MicG, Feb 1, 2014.

  1. I have literally spent a day's worth of time reading about the differences between these two pedals. Lots of people claim to be happy with either. There is is no "wrong" answer it seems between these two.

    I have an Empress.

    I have a Diamond on the way.

    I have a Mesa Walkabout Scout that I love for its fat, tubey, warm goodness. I also use Darkglass effects for my OD and dirt needs.

    Based on my setup, what do you think? Will the Diamond add alittle something special even with it's limited control? Or will I miss the transparency and precise control (read: metered LED display) of the Empress?

    I play mostly alt & hard rock but throw other stuff in the mix now and then too.
  2. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    The Walkabout it pretty friggin warm as is and the Empress doesn't take any of that away IME.

    What is it that you're looking for?
  3. You're right about that. I guess there's always the curiosity factor there too. I was thinking that I'm more of a "set it and forget it" type of player, that is until I start twisting knobs just to see (of which the Empress has plenty). I've never really wanted to go above 10:1 on the Empress for what I do, no interest in side chain; would just prefer most of the time to find a good compression setting and leave it be. It just looks like the Diamond falls in line with that type of thinking. That and the Diamond has a lower freq. response. I'm guessing that's hardly perceivable though.

    Then I start wondering if I would ever appreciate having more options - say for a gig or something along those lines.
  4. Baird6869

    Baird6869 LET'S GO BLUE JAYS...(in 2016)...LET'S GO!!

    The Diamond Bass Comp works really well with the Darkglass B3K IME if that helps.

    You have one and the other is on the way, why stress it? A/B them when the Diamond arrives!:bassist:
  5. scotch

    scotch It's not rocket science! Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2006
    Albany, NY USA
    Please see Profile for Endorsement disclosures
    Sounds to me like you've figured it out already!

    I've used both side by side. The Empress is indeed the more 'surgical' tool while the Diamond definitely 'adds to' or 'changes' your tone!

    I personally am not an advocate of always on compression, but if I were & I wanted to warm up an amp, the Diamond would make sense! With an already warm amp, though, the Diamond might be too much of a good thing perhaps... or perhaps awesome. ?

    With the Empress, it's more of a given quantity: your same tone character, but with pinpoint control over the compression.
  6. I use a Diamond Comp with my Walkabout and love it. Definitely not too much of a good thing.
  7. p0k

    p0k I play the bass and design things.

    Feb 6, 2007
    Brockton, MA
    Haven't used the Empress but love my diamond...you can always roll back the EQ knob on the diamond if it's too much phat goodness for you :)
  8. jimmybc91


    Oct 8, 2013
    Los Angeles
    I have a feeling that you are going to prefer the Empress's transperancy, I A/B them using a Mesa tube amp (don't remember the model) at the store, and almost immediately disliked what the Diamond did to the tone, it changes it and the bypass signal was pretty much perfect in warmth. But hey, it all falls under preference, you may like what the Diamond does to your signal. BTW I leave my compressor always on, for an effect type of use the Diamond is your guy since it does change your signal.

    Let us know what you decide!!
  9. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
  10. jdwhitak


    Mar 20, 2012
    Greenwood, IN
    I've bought the Empress three times! To me it sounds dark. I have the Diamond now and I like it a lot :)
  11. I've played both. The Empress was impressive, lots of control and the metering was really helpful with understanding compression better. However, I sold it to buy the Diamond, which still lives on my board and gets used as an always on. It simply is tonal magic, and I'm using it with an already fantastic sounding "warm" amp (Aguilar TH350).

    I'd get another Empress in a heartbeat if I needed to have more of a strong compression/limiter, or more "control", but it would be a second compressor for me since the Diamond is never, ever leaving.
  12. p0k

    p0k I play the bass and design things.

    Feb 6, 2007
    Brockton, MA

  13. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    I agree. IMO, the diamond isn't perfectly transparent or has a ton of compression on tap, but just has a special 'something' that it adds where you never want to turn it off even with the comp set at it's minimum.
  14. DinnerWithAGypsy

    DinnerWithAGypsy Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    Louisville, KY
    Man, I've been using and digging (the very transparent-sounding) Aguilar TLC for all my compression needs for a long time, but I've been reading so much about this Diamond bass compressor, that I've decided I absolutely must try it.

    Maybe I'll get the Diamond BCP-1 and continue to use my Aggie TLC as more of a limiter to protect against filter spikes...

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    I recently purchased one of the Diamond Bass Compressors and used it tonight for a high energy production show. This thing flat out kills. Its somewhat subtle but it just sweetens up the sound and evens things out in an incredibly musical way(for lack of a better description). I've never been into compressors before, but this one is special. I had been playing straight to DI for the last week, but tonight I had the Diamond before the DI and the sound guy came into the booth after the first act and said the bass sounded just fantastic.
  16. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Question: Since you already own one, and will soon own the other as well, what is the purpose of asking for others' opinions of the comparison, when you can shortly find out for yourself - without risking your perceptions becoming unduly influenced by somebody else first? Wouldn't it be far more useful to not seek such opinions until you've had a chance to listen for yourself - so that you can render an evaluation without a "biased ear", so to speak?

    It's almost as if you're asking others to tell you what you should hear - before you've actually heard it. :eyebrow:

  17. Good point, Hadn't thought of it form the psychological perspective. I'll keep that in mind.
  18. So one last little caveat (if it can really even be called that) is the frequency response between both units.

    Diamond responds down to 20hz while the Empress does not.

    I found this thread from a while ago that tried to put the issue to rest:

    So is it a marketing thing; that lower freq response really isn't a talking point when comparing these two units?