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Aurora Audio compressor vs EL8-x Distressor Dual-Channel Preamps
Old 12th September 2011
Aurora Audio compressor vs EL8-x Distressor


Two Aurora Audio GTQC vs. 1 Aurora Audio GTQ2 MkIII and 2 Distressor EL8-X.

Comes out to same price point. Both compressors are versatile and can be used indipendently during tracking and on 2buss during mixdown if needed. Hoping those of you with experience using one or both of these compressors can chime in with your thoughts, anyone have a preference?

Empirical Labs
GTQC | Aurora Audio

Thank you kindly,
we make records
Old 16th September 2011
Lives for gear
erikdrink's Avatar
Old 19th September 2011
Gear Maniac

I've had GTQC's and Distressors, so I'll chime in with my experience.

The GTQC comp in opto mode sounds fairly similar to the Distressor's opto mode, which was my favorite setting on the Distressor.

As much as a Swiss army knife as the Distressor is reputed to be, the QTQC has some sweet advantages like the ability to do serial compression with the fet and opto modes. It also has ample routing options in back if you end up doing both tracking and mixing through them. If memory serves ( and it usually doesnt) you had to get behind the EL8 to swap inputs.

I just re-read the above paragraph and it makes no sense. To clarify: the GTQC allows you to run signal through its full path, or, with the flip of a switch, you can break the preamp and compressor into separate paths, so you may pair them with other items, use them individually, etc. Obviously, you can use the Distressor as you wish - however, there is an XLR input and a TRS input on the back that cannot be toggled between via some sort of switch. The could be totally useless information, but I found it made routing just a little bit more of a pain in the days before I had a patch bay.

I really liked the Distressor on drums, but I work primarily with acoustic instruments so I moved away from them.

I suspect use would be the deciding factor. I can't say I absolutely loved either compressor - while very flexible, I found something with a very specific signature was more to my liking.

Apologies forth rambling observations that lack a conclusion. Hopefully something useful is in here.


Last edited by MJ Heck; 19th September 2011 at 02:09 AM.. Reason: Clarity
Old 20th September 2011
Gear Addict

I think you could safely say the rail voltages in the
Aurora Audio GTQC ,
would cause the Distressor to catch fire ...
sound in circuitry is some what about pushing electrons ..
over to you ...
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