Extensive compressor reviews and FAQ

dbx 266XL: This is a two-channel line-level rackmount unit. I have gotten many requests to review this model because of its low price--but unfortunately it is a total dud.
 
There is a noticeable click every time your signal crosses the threshold. Many of the settings cause a loss of highs, most especially when using the "overeasy" function, which works well on other dbx units, but on this one it just kills the highs and the tone. The controls, in/outputs, and bypass are all decent, but the overall poor sound quality means there's no point to talking about the various functions in detail. Actually the gate is OK. I hate gates, but I guess if you need a two-channel gate for cheap, the 266XL would do the job.
 
Otherwise I do not recommend this model; instead, get one of dbx's various 166 or 160 models on the used market, or heck--get a Behringer. Regarding the newer 266XS and the older 266 and 266A, I would guess they are equally crappy, and I have no interest in buying them to find out.
 
Price in USD: new $120, used $30-$80.
 
or on Amazon
 

 
 
All text on this page written and owned by Cyrus J. Heiduska, 2006-2014, all rights reserved.
Copying is prohibited, but please feel free to link to this page using the link text "compressor reviews".