Monoprice: This is essentially an extremely cheap copy of the Mooer Yellow, which itself is supposed to be a micro-sized copy of the Diamond CPR-1, meaning it is an optical comp circuit with a tilting EQ. It's a crazy world where even cheap Chinese copies get copied and the copies are sold for even cheaper.
The action is smooth and even, with no squishy effects. It has an inherently very low ratio, so it is meant for general smoothing and NOT peak limiting. Turning up the Comp knob boosts your signal over a fixed threshold.
This one is actually pretty noisy. The Mooer and Hotone versions may not be great, but at least they have reasonably low noise. The Monoprice one is pretty disappointing in this regard. The EQ is similar to the Diamond and Mooer ones, with a shallow arching slope on either side of the tilting point. But the Monoprice one is centered around 1.3 KHz, instead of 900 Hz like the others.
The tone overall is bright, and the compression adds an aggressive emphasis and cut. It is sort of like the Diamond in the way it is more about tonal "pop" than it is about controlling signal levels, however it does not sound anywhere near as pretty as the Diamond. The lows are rolled off noticeably, but there's no loss of highs.
It runs on standard Boss-type 9V DC. The housing is tiny, about 40mm x 93mm, and the construction quality is decent--especially for the price! The footswitch is "true bypass".
Price in USD: new $37, used it will probably be half that.
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