Extensive compressor reviews and FAQ

 
Modding a Boss CS-3 for better bass:
 
R = resistor, D = diode, C = capacitor.
Part numberoriginal valuereplace with:new value
R510Kreplace with:470 ohm
R3610Kreplace with:100 ohm
R32220 ohmreplace with:wire jumper
D10?replace with:wire jumper
C1.027 uF electrolyticreplace with:.22 to .47 uF non-polar
C2.022 uF electrolyticreplace with:.47 uF non-polar
C41 uF electrolyticreplace with:1 uF non-polar
C61 uF electrolyticreplace with:1 uF non-polar
C13.047 uF electrolyticreplace with:2 uF non-polar
C141 uF electrolyticreplace with:1 uF non-polar
C171 uF electrolyticreplace with:1 uF non-polar

 
This is certainly not the "only" method, and there may be some more advanced things you'll want to try such as changing the taper of the Attack or Sustain pots, but these mods have worked well for me. For capacitors, I recommend non-polar metal film, polyester, polystyrene, polypropylene, or mylar; I do not recommend ceramic.
 
Here is one drawing of the schematic: dirk-hendrik.com/CS-3, but you won't actually need the schematic to do the mods suggested above, as the part numbers (C13 etc.) are labeled right on the Boss circuitboard.
 
The space where the input cap is on the circuitboard is a tight spot; a .33 or .47 uF polyester cap may be too big to fit there. One option is to use a smaller type of cap like tantalum; but if you're finicky about audio and want to use "the best" audio caps, you have to get creative fitting the oversized ones in there. One way I have done this is to position the cap near the end of the circuitboard, and run the legs of the cap the 2cm or so back to the points on the board where it is supposed to attach. It requires some careful bending of the legs to make a clean fit, but it works well. Also, you'll want to cover the legs with shrink tubing to avoid them shorting against other metal parts. Ideally you want to position the cap so it will tuck up next to the sub-board that holds the pots when you close the pedal back up. C13 is also a bit of a tight fit; you can use a similar technique of extending the legs, or you can use two 1 uF caps in parallel side-by-side, if that will fit better than one 2 uF cap.
 
If you have questions about doing or understanding the mods, I won't be able to help you--instead, please visit diystompboxes.com. Good luck!

 
 
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