The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
How do you like your Federal AM864 Compressor?
Old 26th July 2009
  #1
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

How do you like your Federal AM864 Compressor?

Hi!All in the title,
maybe you have some links where it's possible to hear at your Federal?
Thanks for your answer,best regards.
Old 26th July 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Marcocet's Avatar
Pretty much everything I record. It always seems to end up somewhere in the mix. Mind you there are a few very distinct versions of the thing, and the only real way to be sure is to take the lid off and get a good look at the side of the transformers. If they mention frequencies that it's down dbs at then you can bet it's the broadcast voice version that looses quite a bit of top and low end. However even those have their place, it all just depends on the source.

Would I pay $1200 for one? Probably not. But maybe, if it was in great condition and had some of the features modded as knobs on the front.
Old 26th July 2009
  #3
don't federals go for like 4k?
Old 26th July 2009
  #4
Lives for gear
 

I would pay 1200 for one. I have one and it is great. I highly advise getting a good tech to add attack release times and move the controls to the front. I know it is a sin to drill holes, but it is even more sinful to sell it after you hear it. It is a wonderfully built unit and my tech was quite fond of it. Make sure the transformers are the full bandwidth versions, Good luck
Old 27th July 2009
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Marcocet's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by shaneoconnor View Post
don't federals go for like 4k?
Last time I checked they were going for like $1700 on the TOP end. Usually more like 1200-1400.
Old 27th July 2009
  #6
Deleted bd1be4f
Guest
It's a cool piece if you've already got a good mixture of comps and want another choice for specific applications, but IMO it's not a first call go to piece. I had one (fully spec'ed out and modded by Steve Firlotte at Inward Connections), used it for a while, then sold it after I found myself consistently returning to my workhorse Distressors, TG1, and 1176 for most duties. YMMV.
Old 27th July 2009
  #7
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

Some people compare this to the La2a but with faster attack/release what do you think?

Do you have songs to hear at the Federal?Thanks,regards
Old 27th July 2009
  #8
Lives for gear
 

I agree that it should not be your first compressor, you really should know what you are doing before picking one up. However once you know what you are doing, these are great.
Old 27th July 2009
  #9
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

Charles possible to get pictures of your mods?
Old 27th July 2009
  #10
Gear Guru
 
RoundBadge's Avatar
Its a cool kinda "one trick"comp w/ an interesting old school mid range color.
a bit of rolloff under 80hz...it was a military broadcast limiter way back.
[they tell you how to blow it up in the manual so the enemies couldn't have it]lol.
nice as a parallel bass or vocal comp[hit hard]
I bought one hear on GS for around 750.00.put about 350.00 into a complete mod/refurb[attack/release,tubes,faceplate,recap,etc].
sold it for around 1200 I think.
I soon realized I could have sold it for a lot more.
Old 27th July 2009
  #11
Gear Addict
 
toolz's Avatar
 

Check the MP3 attachment for an example of the Federal AM-864 on a vocal.

I was using two chains, La2a, DBX902 and a Pultec EQH2 (in that order) on the console insert, and the raw vocal also into the Fed on the next channel as the Parallel.

Ended up going 90% with the Fed in the balance as it seemed to work best.
Attached Files

Styling Free.mp3 (5.68 MB, 10718 views)

Old 27th July 2009
  #12
Lives for gear
 

I have to disagree with it being a one trick pony. I find it is quite transparent in its gain reduction (with slow attack) and can really knock off several db's before you can hear it doing so.......... a little context might help, I find it to be (on bass) the exact opposite of a dbx 160vu, while the dbx grabs everything and makes it one level so it sits in one spot. The federal grabs every note and makes it jump out at you. Between those 2 comps you could probably get/fix any bass tone/issue you can think of.
Old 27th July 2009
  #13
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by toolz View Post
Check the MP3 attachment for an example of the Federal AM-864 on a vocal.

I was using two chains, La2a, DBX902 and a Pultec EQH2 (in that order) on the console insert, and the raw vocal also into the Fed on the next channel as the Parallel.

Ended up going 90% with the Fed in the balance as it seemed to work best.
Thanks for posting this good song!
I hear well the color of the federal and I like it!
What mic/pre did you use on this vocal?
Old 27th July 2009
  #14
Gear Addict
 
toolz's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KIDBILL View Post
Thanks for posting this good song!
I hear well the color of the federal and I like it!
What mic/pre did you use on this vocal?
Can't wait to get my Federal!
Regards
Hi, this was purely a mixing job, so I'm not 100% sure of the tracking chain, but it was way more flat and neutral at source.

The Fed has a wonderful midrange silk thats hard not to love, had better results on vocals over bass so far.. but plan to experiment with it more in the future.
Old 28th July 2009
  #15
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by toolz View Post
Hi, this was purely a mixing job, so I'm not 100% sure of the tracking chain, but it was way more flat and neutral at source.

The Fed has a wonderful midrange silk thats hard not to love, had better results on vocals over bass so far.. but plan to experiment with it more in the future.

Agree!Beautiful midrange!heh
Thanks again!Regards
Old 28th July 2009
  #16
Led
Lives for gear
 
Led's Avatar
Federals aint a bad mic pre with dynamics either.....
Old 28th July 2009
  #17
Lives for gear
 
leaper's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KIDBILL View Post
Thanks for your answers!
Some people compare this to the La2a but with faster attack/release what do you think?
Comparable, not really interchangable.
They are both relatively easy to set up and both somewhat sensitive to input signal.
The LA2A has a smoother effect. The Federal gives way more dirt and grit to a signal. True that it's grabbier than an LA2A.
While they both can work on bass, for example, they end up giving very different results.
Old 28th July 2009
  #18
Lives for gear
 
RedWallStudio's Avatar
 

I pad (-15) the input to mine (don't know if they are all as hypersensitive as mine is.. but mine will overload without a pad) but that allows me to crank the input and it really gives vocals that "upfront" sound... and it adds a perfect amount of grit. It's a one trick pony for sure, but it does that trick pretty dawn well.... giddyup.
Old 29th July 2009
  #19
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

Thanks!
Old 1st August 2009
  #20
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

I can't find informations about the mods for the Fed(attack time/release),do you know where I could find this?Thanks,regards.
Old 1st August 2009
  #21
Lives for gear
 

It is just a matter of changing a couple caps and maybe resistors. The caps will control the release time, I have a 3 position switch, and a pot for the attack. Works perfect.
Old 2nd August 2009
  #22
Gear Nut
 
museic's Avatar
 

Hey Toolz - Thanks for the track I really dig that band. Could I get a name so I can look them up?

Heres the Federal meta..

Federal Limiter AM864 thread
Old 4th August 2009
  #23
Lives for gear
 
KIDBILL's Avatar
 

Thanks museic!regards
Old 17th August 2009
  #24
Here for the gear
 

DIY

Anyone had the AM864 as a DIY project?
Old 17th August 2009
  #25
Lives for gear
 
Marcocet's Avatar
I have some friends who've built similar comps, but I don't know of any DIY kits around yet. Give it a hot minute...
Old 28th March 2011
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
maraisdecygnes's Avatar
 

Several people over the years have mentioned using the Federal as a preamp. Does it need modded for this or is there just a way of using the stock unit for this ? Thanks.
Old 28th March 2011
  #27
Lives for gear
 
Marcocet's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by maraisdecygnes View Post
Several people over the years have mentioned using the Federal as a preamp. Does it need modded for this or is there just a way of using the stock unit for this ? Thanks.
I haven't heard of anybody bothering to bypass the comp and just use it as a preamp. However it's got plenty of gain, so if you like you can just run a mic straight into it without using a preamp. There are plenty of old broadcast comps around that have a ridiculous amount of gain.
Old 28th March 2011
  #28
Gear Maniac
 
maraisdecygnes's Avatar
 

Anyone recommend a trustful/knowing tech for doing standard mods to a stock unit in the U.S.

Also, Anyone run line source into the Federal or would you need a DI first ?
Old 28th March 2011
  #29
Gear Guru
 
RoundBadge's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by maraisdecygnes View Post
Anyone recommend a trustful/knowing tech for doing standard mods to a stock unit in the U.S.

Also, Anyone run line source into the Federal or would you need a DI first ?
Try Mitch Berger in LA
he did one for me
Old 28th March 2011
  #30
Gear Maniac
 
maraisdecygnes's Avatar
 

Thanks RB, Talked to Mitch today. He is the man!

Anyone linking two units for stereo btw ?

Anyone have any audio of the Federal in action? Would be way cool while waiting a few weeks for mine.
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump