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more compressor queries

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by dodgy_ian, Sep 27, 2004.

  1. dodgy_ian


    Apr 9, 2001
    Newcastle, UK
    more compressor realted queries/

    have just bought an SWR baby redhead which has a 1u rack space underneath the head so have been thinking about getting a compressor to stick in there and use live.

    understand compressors and how they work but have no idea what, if any i should buy, for live use. Am guessing that if its going thru FOH compression which bass normally does that perhaps there is no real point in buying one?

    also, am wondering can you get rack mounts with footswitches to turn the compressor on and off (i.e for changing b/w fingers tyle to slap)

    hope u guys can help


  2. If you're playing a rig that you invested a lot of money on, it's always worth it to buy something for your own benefit. I switch my styles and technique quite often and have seen the benefit of a compressor. The fact the the FOH is compressing bass is for the benefit of the venue, not you're personal satisfaction with your tone. I find that a compressor gives me the freedom to beat my bass to death without fear of exploding my speakers.

    For your amp, though, I'm not sure you need to worry too much about a compressor. Decent EQ can bring out all the nuances of your technique better than a compressor could. Perhaps a parametric equalizer or a tuner or wireless or something.
  3. About 3-4 times a year my band plays at the Horseshoe, a very well known medium sized place to play here in T.O. The band always recognises the sound man but he never remembers us (not to blame as he sees 3 bands a night) until I pull out my Ken Smith. He always remembers and always flips out about the bass. He jokes around saying that if he was called in to set up and EQ a system that he wants me to come in, plug into a DI and play semi tones up and down the neck. He has a dedicated compressor for the bass but practically turns it off when I play.

    Now, by no means am I boosting. I'm a beginner to average player, that scored a wicked deal on a used fantastic bass 5-6 years ago and it took me those years to recognise what I bought.

    So my questions are:
    A - do you need more compression on some basses and not others?
    B - what is it that makes a bass need more or less compression?
    C - and for those of you that uses compression, how do you still keep the dynamics in a song (easy on the intro and then slide up to the twelfth fret for that first chorus type of thing)

    Personally, I use the Natural Compression setting on my Boss ME-50B with the threshold all the way clockwise so that it's hardly compressing (but it's there) for live stuff and I use the Limiter on my SWR SM900 for my project studio stuff.
  4. The Clap

    The Clap

    Jan 5, 2004
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Compression is great in a live setting when you:

    A) Use it as a part of your tone
    B) Play at a level approaching the extremes of your equipment

    Compression can do a good deal of different things in varying applications, but it's not for everyone or for every situation. The applications of compression can be found with a search most anywhere, so I won't go into that. When getting a compressor, you're looking mainly for transparency, and I'd suggest adding a robustness of settings to that list also. A good example is the Behringer, the MDX something. I have one, and it has a GREAT array of flexibility, but is about the cheapest in its class, and isn't transparent at all to a purist. I like it for now, and in my 'wall of sound' rock band it's more than good enough, but consider your own individual needs for compression. If you have cabs with huge power handling abilities and amps that'll go to 11, you may not need the same kind of compression, or compression at all. Look around, try a variety of components, and you may even find something else to better serve that rack space (Sansamp? ;) )
  5. dodgy_ian


    Apr 9, 2001
    Newcastle, UK
  6. My bass in your

    My bass in your

    Nov 1, 2003
    Nice little DI box with tube simulation. Smooth, warm. DO a search and you'll find 1000s of threads about this one.

    FMR makes a really nice compressor, named the really nice compressor.
  7. dodgy_ian


    Apr 9, 2001
    Newcastle, UK
    what about if i'm moving from slap to finger and back again - willl that be more needing of a compresspr or can it still be controlled with technqiue/eq?
  8. i use compression as an effect.
    i have it cranked and it gives me a huge percussive sound that i use to play some "drumming" type parts (think Levin).

    when i am playing fingerstyle or pick i never have it on.

    i have a 2nd compressor that i use to even out the EXTREME dynamics of my Chapman Stick
  9. Finger Blister

    Finger Blister

    Jul 8, 2003

    I get a lot more volume using a Behringer MDX with my SWR.
  10. what is the best [rack] compressor for under $200? assuming one exists at all for that price, but I need something a)better than "decent" and b) inexpensive. Doesnt have to be rack, but I could use some more stuff to put in my rack case to make it look cool :D