1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

My BlueMax Compressor is Distorting

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by WillCO, Dec 19, 2005.

  1. WillCO

    WillCO An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure.

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    My PreSonus BlueMax is generating a slightly distorted output signal. It's occurring on any setting, including the manual adjustment setting, and regardless of the position of the pre- and post-gain knobs. When I defeat the compression effect with the "Process" button, the distortion disappears. It is especially noticeable in lower registers.

    I'm not talking Big Muff Pi distortion here, but it's enough to affect the quality of the sound, to keep me from ever recording with it, and to compromise the super-clean tone I've spent so much time and money on otherwise.

    Anyone have a similar experience? :help:
  2. SteveC


    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    I have had 2 of them and never had a problem. Maybe you have a lemon.
  3. WillCO

    WillCO An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure.

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    It's also just occurred to me that I'm using active basses. Not that it would be an acceptable answer, but maybe an explanation...I wonder if the higher impedance signal coming off of the active basses is causing the problem?
  4. The active bass shouldn't have a higher impedance. It should be lower, actually. But it can be hotter (more voltage) and maybe the signal is too hot for the input. Are you monitoring the input with the In/Out meter? The METER button should be pushed IN. How high is the level? You should start by hitting the 0db LED on the loudest notes. Only take it higher when you are OK with the sound at that level.

    Start with the INPUT knob at 12:00 and if the input level is too high then try setting the bass at a lower volume. Do you still hear it as you roll off the bass volume? Then try adjusting the INPUT level on the Bluemax. If you hear the distortion even as you reduce the INPUT knob, then check the battery in your bass.

    You want to start with the gain settings fairly neutral on both input and output. See how that goes.
  5. WillCO

    WillCO An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure.

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    Thanks. I'll try all of that.
  6. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I have been using the BlueMax lately with excellent results. You may also try a slower release time in the manual mode.

    There is an interesting little 'graph at the LMR site related to faster release times distorting lower frequencies. It is the case with most compressors.

    A high gain reduction and ratio coupled with a fast release can cause distortion.