Iridium + Compressor?

Jess 1971

Silver Supporting Member
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I'm a big fan of the Strymon Iridium, having used it for tracking almost all of the lead parts on my band's past two albums (link in sig below). The Iridium works especially well with fuzzes, and it has proven to be an indispensable recording tool.

For my current recording project, I'm doing a lot of cleaner guitar parts with a Rickenbacker, where I'd like to use some outboard compression. Does anyone have any experience using the Iridium with a compressor pedal, and if so, can you share what worked for you? I ask because I have struggled to get overdrive pedals to sound good with the Iridium for direct recording.

I'm currently looking at the Keeley Compressor Plus, but since this will be primarily for direct recording, I just want to be sure that excessive noise won't be an issue.
 

chanley

Gold Supporting Member
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1,190
I have a cali 76 stacked that I use for my "clean/fender" iridium settings. Takes a little tweaking, but once you find your spot, I think it's really great! I have mine dialed so it's pretty quite, but if I get the thru knob around noon, you start to hear some noise.
Tele -> cali76 staced -> Lightspeed -> iridum /fender clean.
 

Jess 1971

Silver Supporting Member
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Thanks for all the input. So generally speaking, the Iridium reacts well with compressor pedals? Not much extraneous noise?
 

nic

Silver Supporting Member
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1,586
Thanks for all the input. So generally speaking, the Iridium reacts well with compressor pedals? Not much extraneous noise?
If you’re using a compressor with an iridium, the extraneous noise won’t be from the iridium, it will be the compressor.

Compressors will raise the noise floor in general, some compressors are very noisy while others operate fairly quietly. YMMV based on each compressor.
 

zzzzzzz

Gold Supporting Member
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907
If you must have the lowest noise with no compromise then the Effectrode LA-1A is your only choice. It’s far and away the quietest comp I’ve used and I’ve had lots of the greats: Cali76 CDX, Cali76 Stacked, Thorpy Fat General, Mad Professor, as well as Rothwell, MXR, Empress, Diamond, Boss etc.
 

brs928

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821
Sometimes I feel that half of my posts are recommendations for the Boss CP-1x. It has the least noise of any compressor I've tried.
 
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Sea_Dweller

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481
Seems obvious but I use a Strymon Compadre with mine. Excellent sounding compressor but I also make good use of the boost as well. Sounds great going into iridium.

I only do studio work and I only use light compression before hitting my audio interface. I’ll add more compression if I need it after with UA plugins. So I don’t really need a ton of knobs on my outboard compressor. The compadre is one giant sweet spot for me. It always sounds good on all settings and it’s easy to dial in. I pretty much leave it on one setting for all guitars, might tweak a tiny bit here and there. I had the Empress MkII compressor and put it up against Compadre. The Empress was also really great but I could get a better sound faster on the Strymon so that’s what I kept. If you need more knobs I recommend the MKII.
 

Jess 1971

Silver Supporting Member
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4,460
Seems obvious but I use a Strymon Compadre with mine. Excellent sounding compressor but I also make good use of the boost as well. Sounds great going into iridium.

I only do studio work and I only use light compression before hitting my audio interface. I’ll add more compression if I need it after with UA plugins. So I don’t really need a ton of knobs on my outboard compressor. The compadre is one giant sweet spot for me. It always sounds good on all settings and it’s easy to dial in. I pretty much leave it on one setting for all guitars, might tweak a tiny bit here and there. I had the Empress MkII compressor and put it up against Compadre. The Empress was also really great but I could get a better sound faster on the Strymon so that’s what I kept. If you need more knobs I recommend the MKII.
Thanks. I'm in a similar situation, whereas I only need light compression, largely for tracking cleaner tracks direct or more jangly Rickenbacker tracks. Any heavier compression needs I'll just apply in my DAW.

I have an Empress Compressor MKII on my main pedalboard, and I really like it a lot. Not sure I want to spend as much as the Compadre or Origin Effects unit costs on something specifically for direct recording that won't see a ton of use, so I was co sidering the Keeley Compressor Plus. Just something to increase the sustain of cleaner tracks without adding noise.
 
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+ 1 on the Compadre. Best compressor I've ever used. Just makes everything sound better. You can't really put your finger on why it's better, and you forget it's even on. Until you turn it off. So I don't. There are better compressors for the super squashed 80's chorus thing. I still use my trusty CS3 for that, which it excels at.
 

Swijak

Member
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604
Thanks. I'm in a similar situation, whereas I only need light compression, largely for tracking cleaner tracks direct or more jangly Rickenbacker tracks. Any heavier compression needs I'll just apply in my DAW.

I have an Empress Compressor MKII on my main pedalboard, and I really like it a lot. Not sure I want to spend as much as the Compadre or Origin Effects unit costs on something specifically for direct recording that won't see a ton of use, so I was co sidering the Keeley Compressor Plus. Just something to increase the sustain of cleaner tracks without adding noise.
I've got an Iridium (thanks to your recommendation!) and I have had great success with the Keeley Comp+ and Wampler Mini-ego; Both highly recommended. I have been fooling around with with a Keeley GC-2 limiter after Comp+ and MXR Timmy set for clean boost and that has been a lot of fun!
 

Jess 1971

Silver Supporting Member
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4,460
I've got an Iridium (thanks to your recommendation!) and I have had great success with the Keeley Comp+ and Wampler Mini-ego; Both highly recommended. I have been fooling around with with a Keeley GC-2 limiter after Comp+ and MXR Timmy set for clean boost and that has been a lot of fun!
That's awesome. Thanks! Glad that you're digging the Iridium and that you've had success using it with the Keeley Comp.
 

rollyfoster

Silver Supporting Member
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18,002
I just stumbled upon this when looking up the Woodshed. He’s using an Iridium for the demo. Seems like it works well…

 

issya

Silver Supporting Member
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19
I purchased an HX Stomp and loved the different sounds I could get out of it. Then picked up an Iridum to see how the amps compared to the Stomp and found them to be much better. Since I already went down the rabbit hole I decided to compare it with a Walrus ASC1. The BF on the ASC1 sounded fabulous but the other amps on the Iridium beat the ASC1. You combine that with the fact that the Iridium produces better drive sounds and it’s a tough choice.

It sounded like the ASC1 has some compression with additional EQ that makes the BF sound like a finished product. I ended up reproducing the ASC1 BF sound by running the Iridium through the FX loop of the Stomp while adding compression before it and EQ after. Sold the ASC1 as the Iridium is now superior.

You may think the Iridium / Stomp combo is redundant but the Stomp does so much more. I still have the option of running other amp models. It gives me the option of using effects that I may not want an individual pedal for. It also does the headphone thing, works as an interface and allows me to play backing tracks through monitors. I run an A/B switch before the return and can choose to output to monitors/headphones or an amp.

With that said, I believe a compressor helps the Iridium sound better. One could argue that the raw sounds of the Iridium vs an amp may be comparable but a compressor adds a finished product. I like both raw and finished so have the option of both.
 
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Kelsey

Member
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2,304
The Keeley GC-2 is a low noise option that works well with the Iridium, and is quiet enough to use after gain pedals.
 

InversePolarity

Tone heretic
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
463
Another upvote for the Keeley C+ speaking from experience. It gives the Iridium a little extra something, hard to define. I miss my Iridium. I may one day grab another one and put it in the FX loop of my MX5 like the previous poster did with a Stomp. Sounds like a winning combination.
 




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