Extensive compressor reviews and FAQ

 
AMT Electronics Bass Packer: This discontinued pedal came from West Siberia, Russia. It's labeled "Siberia Space Program", which seemed hilarious until I remembered that the USA doesn't even have a space program anymore.
 
It has an extreme range of compression, from "moderate" at the minimum end of the Comp knob turn, to "way too squashed" at around 12:00, to "holy hell what is this insanity" at the maximum end. Additionally it has a noise gate built in, with no external markings or controls, and it also gets more intense as you turn up the Comp. So at a minimum setting you may not even notice any gating at all; at the middle it is noticeable and somewhat annoying; and at a high setting it is a total freakshow. At the lower settings it sounds pretty much like any other cheap older comp pedal. At the higher settings it is possible to play with the incredibly amplified harmonics and the stuttering gate to produce some genuinely interesting avant-garde skronk bleep music.
 
It is very noisy generally, and the noise gets progressively worse as you turn up the Comp. It's forgivable if you are making crazy-sounding music anyway, with the noise gate swinging open and shut like a wooden window shutter in a wind storm.
 
It has Low and High EQ knobs, each capable of both cut and boost. With both at 12:00, the signal is reasonably close to flat, without major cuts of highs or lows, though the tone is kind of dull. The EQ knobs have a wide range of effect, so you can certainly set it to have very powerful lows or very bright highs as needed. Of course more highs means more noise.
 
The construction quality is decent, not great but not liable to fall apart either. There's no LED to indicate signal over threshold. It's slightly wider than a Boss pedal. It runs on standard Boss-type 9V DC. The footswitch is not "true bypass", and is not the greatest buffered bypass either, but it's OK. If you want to experiment with extreme compression effects, this pedal is worth trying.
 
Price in USD: $50 to $70 used, no longer available new.
 

 

 
 
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