Low watt amps and compressors

Discussion in 'Glowing Bottle Tube Amp Forum' started by DannyStereo, Jul 29, 2019.

  1. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

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    I haven't used compressors live in years except with electric 12 string, where it prevents the "sitar falling down concrete stairs" sound. All my amps are optimized for sustain at specific volume levels, and I detest the "squeeze/pop/snap" attack sound of a stompbox compressor.
     
  2. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Are you using rack compressors when recording then?
     
  3. soundchaser59

    soundchaser59 Tele-Holic

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    That's interesting because playing leads is where I've recently discovered I do not want the compressor. I guess the way I dial in my lead sound negates the need for the compressor and lets the amp + OD pedal do what I want. I do still like how a compressor helps my clean rhythm sound.
     
  4. Axegrinder77

    Axegrinder77 Tele-Meister

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    Ya for sure, it's a case by case and subjective thing. Sometimes for a lead I notice the comp isn't on, and i'll kick it on... then kick it back off because there was already enough compression and sustain from the amp and distortion. Sometimes though, it lets me get a more "singing" lead, without necessarily having to use more gain than I want. I believe David Gilmour used his compression as a means to get that "sing" without too much gain. It's always so rig dependant though, and many other factors.

    It's definitely a nice option to have under your foot. I have the little Xotic SP. Small and sounds good.
     
  5. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    I guess we need to clarify at this point - different ‘style’ compressors sound different, right?

    I have a Mooer Yellow Comp, which is an optical compressor and really subtle. You have to turn it up past noon to really hear some squish.
     
  6. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

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    I've used everything from original tube compressors from the old RCA Studios to various Manley units to Telectronics LA/2A's and so on to various plugins in Logic and Protools.
    .
    They're just completely different functionally and technologically from stompbox units.
     
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  7. scottser

    scottser Tele-Afflicted

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    this, in spades.
    i love my special 6 head for this reason and it takes on a different character using different speakers and cabs. my favourite home rig right now is the sp6 into a mojotone BV series greenback clone which just chimes and sparkles for days.
     
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  8. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Man, it’s so cool to hear everyone’s different take on things. It’s a good time to be a musician.
     
  9. SlideGuy123

    SlideGuy123 Tele-Meister

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    I just found this thread - interesting stuff from everyone. Goodsell Super17 mk 3 or modded Blues Jr for me, and I have an always on comp on my board. I ditched a Ross clone (too pumpy) a few years ago in favor of a FET comp (Bearhug) and now use a Mad Prof Forest Green on the sustain setting. I only play slide and use fingers, not a flat pick, so I use comp for string balance and a little extra sustain.

    Having said that, at home or when I’m doing a duo with an acoustic guitarist, I just plug straight in and work the volume knob.
     
  10. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

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    I stopped using compressors in the 70's. Low watt amp, high watt amp - doesn't matter, the sound is "effecty" in a bad way IMO. They also sadly ruin many players' used of playing dynamics - and understanding what amp is truly appropriate for a particular venue.

    Even the ones that blend the dry signal in seem to rob the attack of something - and I prefer sustain that comes naturally.

    I'm talking about stompboxes, not studio compression. That's a different ballgame. And a pricey one.

    I have TWO exceptions -

    1. If I specifically want an effected, mashed squid, Jello sustain tone for a specific purpose, and

    2. With electric 12 string, where LACK of mondo compression leaves you with the sound of a sitar falling down concrete stairs!!!o_O I squeeze the living out of my Rickenbacker 360/12C63!!!!!!!!:D
     
  11. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Well, I had an odd/adverse experience this weekend. I went to stack my low gain with my mid gain drive for a lead part to stick out - sounded good in my ears. I asked a trusted tone friend of mine who was in the room how it sounded and he said it just didn’t ‘bloom’ and there was too much compression... ouch. That hit me like a truth brick.
     
  12. MuddyWolf

    MuddyWolf Tele-Meister

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    El 84s and even el34s compress more than enough. And your 6l6 amp is for headroom so a comp would be the opposite of what you want there. I have a couple good comps laying around in case i want one maybe for bass in the studio but i never use them on guitar.
     
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  13. DannyStereo

    DannyStereo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yeah and to make it even more interesting I’ve been using an HX Stomp at church for amps and my real amps for gigs. The Stomp can model a number of amps but I’ve got a dual AC15s preset really dialed in.
     
  14. Chicago Matt

    Chicago Matt Friend of Leo's

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    +1 ^^^. I run my 15 watt tweed Deluxe clone cranked up, using the guitar's volume control to control the amount of gain/distortion. That amp, with its tube rectifier, compresses plenty just as it es. Any more compression would just squash dynamics too much for me.
     
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