Indispensable Compressors

January 17, 2011

Help me build a list please.

Obvious ones:
Neve 33609/2254
Teletronix LA2A
Urei 1176
Fairchild 670
Alesis 3630

Any others?

17 Responses to “Indispensable Compressors”

  1. - Manley SLAM
    – Manley Vari Mu
    – API 2500
    – Thermionic Phoenix
    – Tube Tech CL1B
    – Distressor

  2. Perhaps you’re missing a few truly offensive compressors from the early 90s, without which Jungle and Drum’n’Bass wouldn’t be as dirty.


    That really cheap BBE 2-channel that Turnkey used to fob off to wannabe gangstaz. Even cheaper than the Behringer Composer Pro if you can believe that. I used make their overdriven tone a key selling point.

  3. Summit TLA-100
    Innertube Atomic Squeeze Box (great vocal compressor)
    Pendulum ES-8
    Chandler Germanium
    Audio & Design F760 (built for old Helios consoles)

  4. Regarding the above; how many of each do you have in your rack? How many channels in a session do you stamp with ‘em on?

  5. la2a
    fairchild 600something

  6. + 1 for the API 2500

  7. +++ API 2500 (I need this smack) :)
    ++ LA2A
    ++ Phoenix
    DBX 162 SL
    Vertigo Sound VSC-2
    Summit DCL 200
    Drawmer S 3
    Drawmer 1968 Mercenary Edition
    Elysia Alpha
    Crane Song STC-8

  8. OK, S3 is not possible ;)

  9. I’ll add : Shadow Hills Mastering Compressor with it’s 3 switchable transformers, and heavy gain stage !

  10. Yeah, the Shadow Hills is AMAZING.

    +1 Distressor
    +1 API 2500
    +1 CL1B

  11. Retro Instruments stuff is great (like modern versions of some of the classics for example the STA Leveling Amplifier)
    API 2500 – Got to be up there for sure
    Safe Sound Audio Dynamics Toolbox & P501 Peakride :)
    Joe Meek For Super Squashing parallel is good stuff IMO
    Thermionic Culture
    Purple Audio
    rockruepel Tube Compressor/Comp.One
    Shadow Hills Industries Dual Vandergraph
    Empirical Labs Fatso with the UHBK Mod (sounds great and alot more versatile)
    GML Compressor
    Smart/Alan Smart
    and plus One/+1 for what has already been mentioned for sure

  12. GML 8900….the complete dynamics tool…ITB i’ve only found the oxford dynamics to be similar, but its not perfect, skipping thru screens to get between the limiter and the compressor section can be annoying. i saw the you tube video of massenburg demonstrating it and gotta say i really really learned a hell of a lot about compression in the space of 6 minutes!

  13. I like the suggestions here. I don’t have much to add in terms of additional compressor references, but the top of my “typical” list are:
    CL1B, API 2500, SSL Bus, and Distressor.

  14. Will this compressor hold its own against the Weiss DS1 and the LP SplitComp? It would be great to have something that has the quality of LP Splitcomp but at a fraction of the cost.

    Shy posted an example on this thread at KVR. Been trying to duplicate the audio file but I’m having a real hard time.



  15. Hi,

    All above and:

    EMT 156 compressor –> hot!!
    Fairman TMC
    Weiss DS1-MK3
    Manley SLAM
    Manley Stereo Variable Mu
    Mercury 66 MKIII
    Crane Song STC-8/M

  16. Barth Dynaset
    Siemens U273b

  17. I love my Charteroak SCL-1, so perhaps it could be included? The Elysia mpressor is really interesting, and of course, something similar to my Vari-Mu would be great, at least getting close, as a mix comp. I don’t expect ditching my 2bus hw chain :)

    (And of course, a 3630 for that french house sound…)


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