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To compress or not to compress...

TwinkleDaddy

Member
Messages
309
I am thinking about buying a compressor to use for "always On". I always play in clean and am very obsessed with my tone and I want my live sound to be as sharp and clean as possible. I play really loud though with a lot of delay/reverb so sometime things can get a bit muddy. Would a compressor fix this? Someone school me on this subject!
 

whiskypete

Member
Messages
348
Don't know if it'll fix your problem but I just got the Barber Tone Press and it's pretty much an always on live pedal for me. Parallel compression is awesome. Infinite sustain and your guitar still sounds like your guitar.
 

TwinkleDaddy

Member
Messages
309
I've also heard they can "fatten" you tone up.. I"ve been looking intot he Diamond compressor but i've also heard great things about the barber.
 

stompboy

Member
Messages
625
I have just discovered the wonders of comps through loops. Tried a bunch of them already and settled on the Rothwell Love Squeeze. Possibly the most transparent out there.
If you are getting muddiness when it's cranked you might need to tweak your amp. I have never been afraid to dial it back at volume.
 

Jesus freak

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,644
Get one with a blend knob, (i.e. Wampler or Barber). Then you can dial in what ya need.
 

Bartimaeus

Member
Messages
1,293
Get a Diamond Compressor and dial in a subtle setting. Sounds amazing, I never turn it off.
It also sounds amazing for heavier compression, so it's really up to you. Best compressor I've heard, though.
 

RockStarNick

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
3,632
As far as compressors go, Optical ones (like the Diamond) are going to be THE most transparent for tone. And on some subtler settings, you may wonder if the unit is even on.

As far as the "Ross/Dynacomp" Compressors, I just love ones with a blend knob. I own a Barber Tone Press, as well as a Wampler Ego. And despite having similar controls, they sound very different.

The Wampler has more of that "nashville squish" going on, as far as the tone is concerned. Which is in line with Wampler's description - he says that it sounds like "a really really good, old Dynacomp" and I'll agree. Best for chicken pickin and someone who wants to know that their compressor is ON, while still having the ability to blend in the clean.

The TonePress has a little less character to it's compression sound. A little more neutral. Works great with buckers and single coils. It can totally do the chicken pickin thing as well, but with a little less of that compressor squishy flavor.
 

b3john

Member
Messages
1,163
I also have the Tone Press, I use it with Strats for clean sounds to even up the volume levels without that squish most stomp box compressors are (in)famous for.

I had a Wampler Ego compressor but it wasn't nearly as "transparent" as advertised, at least not to my ears. The blend seemed more about changing how much cluck you got from picking dynamics, vs. the Tone Press where the blend can function more as a sort of limiter.

I keep meaning to demo the Empress and the Diamond but haven't gotten around to it yet.
 

cacibi

Member
Messages
956
Empress compressor is a great option for an "always on", subtle compression. Mix knob, low noise, level metering...really great unit.
 

blackba

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
11,533
If you play a lot of clean, than a compressor is a nice pedal to have. I have a diamond bass comp and have used it on guitar with great success, its one of those pedals that you miss it when its off. The EQ is nice too. If I were to sell the Diamond, I would get the Empress compressor, it looks awesome.

I also have a Barber tone press, which I like as well, it has a color control inside which affects its transparency. It is capable of compressing a lot more. I set mine up to have a little more character. The one quibble is it is noisy compared to the diamond, but at the settings I have it on, its not an issue.
 

voorhiessa

Senior Member
Messages
6,559
I recommend the Dyna comp for starters, the cheap one. Just seems like a natural place to start. It colors the tone, but in a sweet way.

The Visual Sound comp is nice too because it has a tone knob (which you can bypass if you desire) and a noise gate (also bypassable). Or, for 30 bucks more, you can step up to the Route 66, which is the same but with a built in tube screamer.
 

ManUBobby7

Member
Messages
187
+1 on Empress, you can dial in the squish and change the compression ratio on the fly, you wont need another compressor.
 

TwinkleDaddy

Member
Messages
309
Thanks for all the, definately some food for thought. I need something transparent, I have never been a fan of "coloring" in any way to my instrument or amps. I spent a lot of time and money setting up the amps I want and the guitar i play. Therefore, I try to keep my tone as organic as possible when playing with pedals. I'm leaning toward the Diamond or the Tone Press. If I get a Diamond, I will be the biggest Fan boy! I already own the Trem, ML2 and MLjr. THen again, if it works, why go elsewhere... i'm going to consult some videos now.
 

ibegofyou

Member
Messages
515
I love the coloration of the Ross-style compressors. AM makes a great one. The Comprossor will never leave my board.
 

ManUBobby7

Member
Messages
187
Thanks for all the, definately some food for thought. I need something transparent, I have never been a fan of "coloring" in any way to my instrument or amps. I spent a lot of time and money setting up the amps I want and the guitar i play. Therefore, I try to keep my tone as organic as possible when playing with pedals. I'm leaning toward the Diamond or the Tone Press. If I get a Diamond, I will be the biggest Fan boy! I already own the Trem, ML2 and MLjr. THen again, if it works, why go elsewhere... i'm going to consult some videos now.
Empress doesnt color my tone, I'm like you, I like to hear all the fendery goodness from my vintage amps, actually the "Empressor" (as its called haha) doesnt have a tone knob cuz theres no coloring at all. I've read the daimond can a bit, but that was from ppl who owned both, I havent.

I researched FGC, Diamond and Empress extensively, and tried to pay particular attention to the ppl who had all 3, and how they compared them. Food for thought ....
 

TwinkleDaddy

Member
Messages
309
Empress doesnt color my tone, I'm like you, I like to hear all the fendery goodness from my vintage amps, actually the "Empressor" (as its called haha) doesnt have a tone knob cuz theres no coloring at all. I've read the daimond can a bit, but that was from ppl who owned both, I havent.

I researched FGC, Diamond and Empress extensively, and tried to pay particular attention to the ppl who had all 3, and how they compared them. Food for thought ....
NOw that I think back. I did hear a lot of really good reviews on the empressor. I need to look back into that one! thanks
 

phazersonstun

Member
Messages
3,117
I've been through a handful of boutique comps & against all odds ended up really liking the digitech main squeeze. Always on.
 

Geosh

Member
Messages
2,395
I love my TC Nova Dynamics compressor in the studio mode. Super transparent and subtle but in all the right ways. Plus, if you want squishy Ross compression it does that too. I don't use compression all that much, but this is one of the best I have used (and mine is for sale too :))
 




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