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Help me get a compressor pls Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 1 week ago
  #1
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sentokan's Avatar
Help me get a compressor pls

Hi guys! I have a studio based around hardware mixer with external effects and hardware synths.
I am looking for a good/ok stereo compressor (preferably with a side chain option).
I have an Alesis 3632 but it s noisy as hell.
So I prefer something with as little noise as possible.
Thanks a lot!
I looked at: DBX 266/166xs, ART scl2, FMR Audio RNC/RNLA, Drawmer mxpro-30 or a Joe Meek mc2.
I repeat: not expensive, no noise, stereo and side chain option.
Old 1 week ago
  #2
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I can vouch for FMR RNC - dead quiet. Works totally as expected as long as you realize that "super nice mode" needs to be disengaged for fast reaction times. The HPF in sidechain thread about it may take it to the next level .

Drawmer DL251 is another good one, and Drawmer is solid in general. Lots of options out there.
Old 1 week ago
  #3
Here's a bunch of VCA compressors: some have sidechain for sure.
Drawmer is ok, some models (1969 and 1968 mk2 very good)
Symetrix 425 is ok. (cheap as chips)
BSS DPR 402 is good. (totally underrated)
Calrec is good (if you can find those)
Urei/JBL is good (LA-12, LA-22, 7110)
Focusrite (platinum range) Compounder is good.
Klark Teknik DN 504 (four in one unit no sidechain) is good.
Klark Technik DN 500 (has sidechain) is good.

FET compressor: no sidechain but total bargain
Klark Technik 76-KT good

Opto with tube gain stage: also a bargain.
ART Pro VLA II is good

Had the DBX 266XL a long time ago. Didn't like it. DBX 166 is supposed to be better.
Old 6 days ago
  #4
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goony's Avatar
Second the FMR RNC
Old 6 days ago
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

Before you sell the 3630 you could try the mod where you cut the gate out of the circuit. That'll get rid of some noise. You might just not like how the 3630 sounds, though.

Reptil mentioned the BSS DPR 402 which I also think is underrated.

I'll add the Valley People Dynamite 2. You can get the later 2 model for pretty cheap sometimes like this recently sold one.

I forget how the BSS works but even though the Valley People is stereo I think it just links the detector circuit so you still need to adjust setting on both channels. So it can be a little annoying to work in stereo. Unless mine is just broken. This is opposed to the 3630 which completely links both channels so you only need to adjust your setting on channel 1. Or the FMR RNC which can't do dual mono at all.
Old 6 days ago
  #6
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jdier's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sentokan View Post
...FMR Audio RNC/RNLA...
I have and like both of these units.

The RNC seems faster and imparts less of a sonic foot print.

The RNLA seems to round sounds out a bit more. I find myself using the RNLA much more than the RNC, but both are quite and do a great job.
Old 6 days ago
  #7
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sentokan's Avatar
Thanks a lot guys!
Old 6 days ago
  #8
I had a JoeMeek MC2 and it was an excellent compressor, along with the TC Electronic Triple C multiband. I’m not a total hardware snob, and most of the ITB compressors are pretty awesome these days, unless you want to spend mad amounts of cash for something more high end, or you need hardware in a live setting.
Old 6 days ago
  #9
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ITB compressors are great, but capturing peaks before the audio hits the DAW is a very valuable tool.
Old 6 days ago
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reptil View Post
Opto with tube gain stage: also a bargain. ART Pro VLA II is good . . .
[Created a new thread instead for my post regarding the ART Pro-VLA II here.]
Old 6 days ago
  #11
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string6theory's Avatar
Drawmer 1978 Stereo FET Compressor ~ $800 (poor man’s API 2500?)

Drawmer 1968 MKII Dual/Stereo Tube/FET Compressor ~ $1000

Did I mention I love me some glowing VU meters?!


FMR PBC-6A Compressor ~ $350


For my new casual recording room, I’m setting up 4 “channel strips” using 4x Great River ME1-NV’s, 2x EQ-1NV’s and 4x 1968 MKII (or ME). Then, the 1978 on the mixer’s 2-Bus and two linked PBC’s the Sub Mst.

Not a tone of usage time yet for the Drawmers, but so far so good after initial recording and testing out the cfg. I have used the PBC-6A for bass, which I can recommend. I’m planning to have two linked pairs of them for two different setups, my gtr/vox/bass/drum recording rig and my synth recording rig. So far, more recently, I’ve used the PBC repeatedly on the MS-20M with a Memory Man Deluxe delay and it was always sweet!

My main rig will use a different configuration of 8 “channel strips” with the trusty 5500/2500 combo off the mixer and now also an insertable Dangerous Bax EQ. But, I needed something much more affordable in the casual room, but still great sounding, and preferably 1 rack space high max, so picked the Drawmer ‘68, ‘78 and FMR 6a’s, naturally.

All have side chaining!

Old 6 days ago
  #12
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Acid Mitch's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by studio460 View Post
What does anyone use a hardware compressor for in a synth-heavy environment, aside from vocals and guitar?
Distortion on single sounds or groups by driving it hard.
Squishing groups of drums or other stuff together.
Levelling in an effects chain.
Old 6 days ago
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbylandry View Post
Before you sell the 3630 you could try the mod where you cut the gate out of the circuit. That'll get rid of some noise. You might just not like how the 3630 sounds, though.
This is a 3632 though, not a 3630. It's an Alto compessor badged as Alesis after inMusic bought both of them.

It got quite good reviews, people thought it was an improvement on the 3630.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sentokan View Post
I have an Alesis 3632 but it s noisy as hell.
So I prefer something with as little noise as possible.
Compression often brings up any noise of the audio going through it, that's why they put a gate on it. Check out Nick Batt using the gate on a 3632: YouTube

If yours is really noisy, maybe it's faulty?
Old 6 days ago
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rockmanrock View Post
This is a 3632 though, not a 3630. It's an Alto compessor badged as Alesis after inMusic bought both of them.

It got quite good reviews, people thought it was an improvement on the 3630.



Compression often brings up any noise of the audio going through it, that's why they put a gate on it. Check out Nick Batt using the gate on a 3632: YouTube

If yours is really noisy, maybe it's faulty?
I totally missed the 2 on there, you're right.
Old 6 days ago
  #15
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time_zone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sentokan View Post
I have an Alesis 3632 but it s noisy as hell.
This is strange, since as others said, the 3632 got some quite nice reviews.
Also the 3632 gets mentioned in this article about the 20 best compressors:

Top 20 Best Compressors Of All Time - Attack Magazine

Alesis 3632 Compressor Review- by Steven Williams - Home Recording forums

Alesis 3632

And this is one of the few compressors in this range not using a wall wart and is quite heavy. To repeat what others said, maybe your unit is just faulty.
Old 6 days ago
  #16
this is a fun thread: dirtiest compressor alive? but noisy AF
Old 6 days ago
  #17
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FlyingMusician's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by sentokan View Post
I looked at: DBX 266/166xs, ART scl2, FMR Audio RNC/RNLA, Drawmer mxpro-30 or a Joe Meek mc2.
This is a tough one. The only cheap compressors I have is a DBX 266 and Presonus ACP88, and I just ran some tests with these along with an SSL bus compressor, and they can't get anywhere near the same tone especially on fast attack / release settings.

Also, I had an ART Pro VLA II for a while and just couldn't get anything out of it I liked so I wouldn't recommend that either.

However there is an SSL clone (BUSS COMPRESSOR — Vintage Pro Audio Equipment | AudioScape Engineering Co.) that really gets very close to the SSL and is miles ahead of those three less expensive compressors I mentioned. It's $650.

The Audioscape is the cheapest really good stereo compressor I know of but there may be others some here know about. Just my opinion.
Old 6 days ago
  #18
I'd say none of the above and save up for a used API 2500. Its excellent in every way and one of the most flexible comps out there.

Do it right the first time instead of wasting time. Life is too short, ymmv.
Old 6 days ago
  #19
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Synthpark's Avatar
wait until Behringer clones an SSL bus comp
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