• New Sponsor: ShipNerd, Ship Your Gear with Us... for less! Click Here.

NPD - Empress Compressor

jocfan1

Member
Messages
692
So a NPD - Comp thread has to be about the most boring NPD thread possible, but hey, any NPD is better than a non-NPD.

That being said, I'm pretty stoked about this particular compressor. I've been trying to find one that I can use for subtle compression to even out levels on my acoustic in a live setting. I've got a Keeley that I like quite well on my electric board, and I tried it for a while on acoustic but found that (like many Ross comps) it altered the EQ a bit much for my taste, and added a bit of noise; setting it so the EQ shift wasn't noticeable required turning it down enough that it did almost nothing, so there was no point. I decided I needed to consider a non-Ross circuit.

I looked hard at several of the favorites on here, with my final contenders being the Diamond, MXR M87, EQD Warden, and Empress. I was really looking for something tonally neutral, so the Warden and Diamond were out. I realize a lot of folks swear by the "sweetness" the Diamond adds, but I already love the sound of my acoustic and just wanted a fairly invisible comp that would even things out between fingerpicking and strumming a bit. And ultimately I really wanted something with a mix or blend control, so the MXR got the boot too.

After a few weeks of chasing used units, I finally broke down and spent a few extra bucks to get a brand new one from PGS. I only got to play around with it a bit yesterday, but I've got to say, I'm blown away. No tonal changes, no unnatural squash, and no noise. I'm going to run it a bit more this afternoon, and we'll see how it sounds running thru an actual PA and not my acoustic amp in a small room where I'm fighting to hear the amp rather than the guitar, but so far I have to say, a hearty congrats to the team at Empress on a tremendous piece of gear. It's my first Empress pedal, and it couldn't have made a better impression.

EDIT: It occurs to me that I would be remiss if I failed to thank TGP user bongomania for all his reviews on ovnilab.com, which provided some very useful insight & info.
 
Last edited:

blackba

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
11,851
Congrats on the new empress comp, one is still on my wish list, but behind the cali76.

I tried the diamond comp on my acoustic and it was okay, but I liked it better without it to be honest....
 

jocfan1

Member
Messages
692
I looked at the Cali76, but that's a whole 'nother level of expensive. And not terribly pedalboard friendly, I think. If I were looking primarily at studio applications, that'd definitely be one to look at real hard, but it just wasn't in my budget.
 

0xeneye

Member
Messages
1,740
I love my empress comp, and have been through several. It's a great design : parallel blend, side chain, metering all very useful for stage and studio.
 






Top Bottom