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Buzz Audio SOC-1.1 Stereo Optical Compressor Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 8th June 2012
  #31
epp
Gear Nut
 

I love the sound of the class a/b original. Very pure opto compression.

Wouldn't even compare it with the Charter Oak someone mentioned, totally different types of comp.
Old 10th June 2012
  #32
Lives for gear
The SOC 2.0 also has transformers. The SOC 1.1 is transformerless.
Old 23rd August 2012
  #33
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tube World View Post
I have seen very little about this optic compressor on gearslutz. Anyone use it? I would assume it's good for vocals...perhaps on a 2 bus or at the mastering stage?
One of the best optical compressors in my world I compared it with LA3A REISSUE and the UREI LA3A "THE one YOU SHOULD HAVE " and i prefered SOC 1.1 on everything ABSOLUTLY AMAZING UNIT thanks TIM!
Old 11th October 2012
  #34
What about a comparison between the SOC 20 and the Charter Oak? (Those are the two I'm considering for the master buss) On the demos, the way the Oak tracked that signal was incredible. Very sensitive! But, just wondering if the complete and obvious transparency of the thing would become a little boring. I'm just wondering if the SOC would have a bit more color, versatility and attitude?
Old 11th October 2012
  #35
why are you all doing this to me? now I have to look for one. heh
Old 11th October 2012
  #36
Gear Maniac
 
Upfront2K's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by warlordpriest View Post
What about a comparison between the SOC 20 and the Charter Oak? (Those are the two I'm considering for the master buss) On the demos, the way the Oak tracked that signal was incredible. Very sensitive! But, just wondering if the complete and obvious transparency of the thing would become a little boring. I'm just wondering if the SOC would have a bit more color, versatility and attitude?
I don't have the SOC 20 but I'm sure it's great.

I do have the SOC 1 along with the Charteroak.

For Mix Buss purpose it's the Charteroak hands down w/o question.

Both compressors are clean but by no means sterile like a Cranesong STC8.

The Buzz is incredible on bass and great over all. It's a fantastic unit that if you bought it you'd never sell it. It's that special.

The Charteroak is a high fidelity unit which gives you depth & a euphonic sound that's very unique. It also is more flexible with continuous adjustable attack & release. It has static and dynamic threshold controls which allow you to do hard knee & soft knee compression and anything in between. Once I heard the unit I sold my Red 3 which I thought I'd never ever do but the Charteroak was that good.
Go with the Charteroak if you're looking for a mix buss compressor.

Good Luck
Old 14th October 2012
  #37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Upfront2K View Post
I don't have the SOC 20 but I'm sure it's great.

I do have the SOC 1 along with the Charteroak.

For Mix Buss purpose it's the Charteroak hands down w/o question.

Both compressors are clean but by no means sterile like a Cranesong STC8.

The Buzz is incredible on bass and great over all. It's a fantastic unit that if you bought it you'd never sell it. It's that special.

The Charteroak is a high fidelity unit which gives you depth & a euphonic sound that's very unique. It also is more flexible with continuous adjustable attack & release. It has static and dynamic threshold controls which allow you to do hard knee & soft knee compression and anything in between. Once I heard the unit I sold my Red 3 which I thought I'd never ever do but the Charteroak was that good.
Go with the Charteroak if you're looking for a mix buss compressor.

Good Luck
I'm very grateful that you responded and took the time to give me your assessment.
Excuse the rambling letter.
I keep hearing the same thing again and again about the SOC-1...once you have it you'll never sell it. You don't hear that about a lot of pieces of gear. (I do however, know of at least one person who has sold their Charter Oak less than a year after buying it.)
The Red 3 was a piece I was lusting after a few months ago, but never bought because the price wasn't right. And you're telling me you sold the Red 3 for the Charter Oak!!? To me, that's a helluva statement about just how much the Oak has going on!
The ideal thing would be to have both, like you do, but the money's just not there for that right now. Now I may have a chance to get the SOC-1 at 2/3 the street price but its a very short window of opportunity. Getting one of them for a grand less, and using it on the current project, a live recording where bass and vocals are crucial might be a no-brainer for now. (The Oak seems like it might excel on more pristine recordings.)
Unless I can find an importer that can get me the Oak over here in Japan without totally raping me on the price I may just settle for the SOC-1 temporarily, earn and learn more and get the Oak a couple months down the road. There's only one authorized dealer here, and he doesn't bother to list the price on his site, which is never a good sign, but I'm going to call him tomorrow and see. Then I'll make my decision.
Landsdowne Pa! Wow, that brings ,back memories. Can't count how many times I rode the bus or my bike there from West Philly to see some girls I was infatuated with since junior high school.
Old 14th October 2012
  #38
Gear Maniac
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warlordpriest View Post
I'm very grateful that you responded and took the time to give me your assessment.
Excuse the rambling letter.
I keep hearing the same thing again and again about the SOC-1...once you have it you'll never sell it. You don't hear that about a lot of pieces of gear. (I do however, know of at least one person who has sold their Charter Oak less than a year after buying it.)
The Red 3 was a piece I was lusting after a few months ago, but never bought because the price wasn't right. And you're telling me you sold the Red 3 for the Charter Oak!!? To me, that's a helluva statement about just how much the Oak has going on!
The ideal thing would be to have both, like you do, but the money's just not there for that right now. Now I may have a chance to get the SOC-1 at 2/3 the street price but its a very short window of opportunity. Getting one of them for a grand less, and using it on the current project, a live recording where bass and vocals are crucial might be a no-brainer for now. (The Oak seems like it might excel on more pristine recordings.)
Unless I can find an importer that can get me the Oak over here in Japan without totally raping me on the price I may just settle for the SOC-1 temporarily, earn and learn more and get the Oak a couple months down the road. There's only one authorized dealer here, and he doesn't bother to list the price on his site, which is never a good sign, but I'm going to call him tomorrow and see. Then I'll make my decision.
Landsdowne Pa! Wow, that brings ,back memories. Can't count how many times I rode the bus or my bike there from West Philly to see some girls I was infatuated with since junior high school.
I wouldn't beat myself up about the choices. If you can get the Buzz at a price that's right grab it. I don't know what you have access to but another option you might like to consider is the Pendulum OCL. That's a great unit also that you couldn't go wrong with.

Good to hear you know about Lansdowne, PA. it's a nice place to live.

Thanks
Old 14th October 2012
  #39
Lives for gear
 

I've had both the SOC1.1 and OCL-2 (selling the OCL right now, in fact).

The SOC seemed to provide less harmonic excitement, but still created a nice sense of animation and dimension while controlling signals.

The OCL gels things together very nicely, and seems to add brightness & movement in the upper mids & highs (with the stock tubes, anyway)...it's more "sparkly."

I wouldn't hesitate to use either on subs or the mixbus; in some cases one might work better than the other.

As with almost any piece of gear, the idea of owning it is more powerful than the actual experience...it always comes down to the music in the end.


Andre
Old 14th October 2012
  #40
Lives for gear
 

LOL...Dr. Sax was instrumental...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Upfront2K View Post
I second Dr. Sax on the Charter Oak SCL-1 compressor. He was instrumental in me getting the unit and I have to say I've never heard a unit that sounds this good on the mix. The Fidelity has to heard to be believed it is simple astonishing.
Old 15th October 2012
  #41
Someone above asked about the SOC20. It has more color and mojo than the SOC1.1, but they work in a similar way. The SOC20 has Mid-Side processing also which is very useful. There was a review in the latest Tape Op.
Old 15th October 2012
  #42
.

SOC1.1 is my favorite comp EVER.

And the ONLY one I'll trust to actually track vocals, acoustic guitar and electric bass with.

Normally, I would NEVER track with compression.

But Tim Farrant knows what he's doing, and designs flawless gear, IMO.

Can't wait to check out the 2.

Go, Buzz!

.
Old 15th October 2012
  #43
Well, things kind of reversed themselves and the Oak is on its way. The dealer turned out to be a great guy. He emailed me before I had a chance to call him. He had a demo that was barely used, and the price he wanted for it was unbelievably low, even lower than the SOC1.1 so I jumped on it.
Still gonna get the SOC1.1
It may take a little bit longer. But its obviously worth having.
Old 24th April 2013
  #44
Gear Addict
 
wilcofan's Avatar
 

Anybody try a SOC1.1 and the Essence?
I'm thinking about a SOC but did not like the Essence.
However, I owned the Buzz MPE1.1 and loved it, especially the DC coupled line amp.

I found the Essence with it's little knobs and transformers to be a little jumpy. Either too much compression or not enough. And that's got to be the first time I ever said that about an optical compressor.
Old 24th June 2013
  #45
Just checking back in.

My SOC1.1 finally arrived over the weekend and I was too busy to do anything but unpack it, rack it and wire it up. All I could do was gaze at it between sets and I swear to you, looking at the controls and the way its set up, all I could think of was,"damn sure looks like I've got two LA3A's here!" Today, had some time and ran a couple of highly dynamic tunes through it, just setting everything on auto and at a 2:1 or 5:1 ratio, with the gain reduction barely hitting 2 db on peaks and it sounds like my first impression was correct.
It is so smooth, so warm, so musical, and so very fattening and flattering.

I don't know how Tim does it. No transformers, no tubes and yet a warm, rich enveloping sound.

Best compression I've Ever heard, hands down, at least for my kind of music (smooth whatever)
No more compression worries for me.
Finally got that handled.

If you're not into a lot of pumping and artifacts, this is your baby!
Highly recommended!
Old 25th June 2013
  #46
Quote:
Originally Posted by J_Flux View Post
Is the SOC any good for mastering EDM? Is the colour it adds suitable for this task?
Sorry. Don't know what EDM stands for.
Just wanted to add this because I didn't see anyone mention it, but I noticed that on the master buss it was very smooth at removing a lot of sibilance from a track. Like butter!
I would have no problems using this for mastering.
Old 25th June 2013
  #47
Quote:
Originally Posted by warlordpriest View Post
It is so smooth, so warm, so musical, and so very fattening and flattering.

I don't know how Tim does it. No transformers, no tubes and yet a warm, rich enveloping sound.
+1. Excellent description of a beautiful compressor that I use all the time on bass vox and acoustics especially. I only have this and a Portico 5043 for tracking and I feel I am totally covered. Everything else is ITB.
Old 25th June 2013
  #48
Lives for gear
Glad you like you SOC 1.1 WarLordPriest. Like Manley gear, Buzz Audio gear becomes part of your family for life. Tim makes incredible gear. I also have his MA2.2 with 2 MA1.1 DIs. His preamp is my go to pre. Sounds great with every mic I have - especially U87ais.
I love the SOC 1.1 on acoustic guitar, drum overheads, piano, flute, violin, electic bass, and vocals. It is great with classical music on 2 Buss. Prefer it to my VariMu for that genre of music.
Old 25th June 2013
  #49
Oh Yes, this comp is a definite keeper.
Thanks, you guys for sharing your experience and putting me on the right track!
And Waldie Wave, thanks for also mentioning how much you like the MA2.2. That preamp is at the top of my list as something that just makes sense as my first serious pre, price-wise and performance wise. Haven't decided whether or not to soup it up with the transformer option but I'm definitely looking into that next. I've gambled and lost too much money on gear that doesn't work for me and since it seems like my recording is heading more in the direction of acoustic music, especially piano, this might be just the ticket.
Old 25th June 2013
  #50
901
Gear Maniac
 
901's Avatar
MA2.2 was my first expensive mic pre and I bought it especially for acoustic guitar and other acoustic source that should sound as natural as possible.
In the meantime I bought/built a couple of other preamps (Germanium, API, Neve Clones, CAPI), but for everything acoustic and airy I still like the MA2.2 best.
Old 30th June 2013
  #51
Lives for gear
 
studjo's Avatar
 

just recorded a drum kit with 5 Ma2.2 ... won't get much better I fear

my favorite pre


Buzz SOC is still kicking ass - best bass compressor? I dunno but I can hardly take it off that channel ...
Old 2nd May 2018
  #52
Lives for gear
 
soundmodel's Avatar
 

It sounds very nice on demos. It has the typical "brightening up" effect of LA-2A, near invisible classy, smooth compression. Some thickening in the mids.

I wonder if there's a plug-in comparable to this? Since I'm cheap.
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