Extensive compressor reviews and FAQ

Guyatone BL2: This is a bass limiter from their older "Micro" series, and it's a little pedal about 2/3 the size of a Boss.
 
The tone and action are similar to the LMB-3, with good frequency range and fairly low noise, but there are a couple of audible artifacts. There can be a little pop when your signal crosses the threshold, and also there can be kind of a "rustling-sounding" modulation on the bottom end when you slam it hard with a big low-frequency spike. But on the other hand, it will actually stop those spikes from getting through, which a lot of more expensive limiters don't do so successfully.
 
It has a switch for two attack time settings, both of which are useful, as well as threshold and output level knobs. The threshold knob goes clockwise for lower thresholds and counterclockwise for higher--it makes sense if you think of the 0-10 as "least effect" to "most effect".
 
It runs on standard Boss type 9V DC. The construction of this pedal is ultra cheapo: plastic jacks mounted to the circuitboard, and the thin stamped sheet-metal housing is held together with a rubber ring instead of screws. The footswitch is flimsy and not true bypass, and the bypass quality is OK but not great. When I opened the pedal up to look at the insides, and then put it back together, it stopped working. So I opened and re-closed it up again, and it resumed working fine. In spite of ll that, because it is small and effective, I was content for some time to keep it on my pedalboard right after an envelope filter that puts out a crazy volume spike, since that was in a separate bypass loop anyway.
 
Price in USD: used $20-$100, no longer available new.
 

 

 
 
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".