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View Full Version : Using a compressor with acoustic


derek2400
01-08-2012, 09:32 AM
Hey folks,
I just looking to SLIGHTLY enhance my covers of Billy Mclaughlin and a Hedges(Arrowhead) tune. I am finding that some of the hammer-ons are not as loud or die off quicker than I want them to. I know Hedges used Compression in the studio and live(off the soundboard, not in his rig). I just think I need it ever so lightly. I`m just not sure EXACTLY how it works. Sorry in advance for being a nim-rod. Thanks:D

waveform
01-08-2012, 09:39 AM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compression_(electric_guitar)

Buts thats electric, think its the same principle.

RockerDuck
01-08-2012, 12:50 PM
Studio compression is somewhat different from a compression pedal for electric players. There are a couple out there in pedal form that will be close, like the BBE pedals. I use a Yamaha 102c mixer with compression on 2 channels that works well for what you are asking and its cheaper than the pedals.

MineField316
01-08-2012, 04:29 PM
I have some experience with this, though not a ton. I also have the Yamaha 102C and agree that it has a good compressor built in that works well and the whole board is less than most good compression pedals.

I have tried a couple of different compression pedals with my acoustics and find that they tend to be a bit noisy. The ones I tried were made for electric (Boss, MXR, DanoElectric, etc), so that may be part of the problem. I have not had the chance to try the BBE Optical Comopressor Pedal yet, but have heard good things.

Hope that helps a bit...

mutantrock
01-08-2012, 04:46 PM
I have used several and own several of these. First the compressors built into my Yamaha board are surprisingly useful and is a feature no other board has. I have used on guitars and it works very well. The compression built into my Fishman Aura Spectrum pedal and the F1 Aura on board my Martin guitar are a little more "transparent" . My Boss CS-3 does not work as well with acoustics but is not bad. My Analogman orange squeezer is good but is not clean and kind of edgy but sometimes that is cool. My Analogman Ross type compressor is not very good on acoustics.
Overall, I suggest going with a Yamaha mixer which are decent quality and include the compressors.

derek2400
01-08-2012, 04:50 PM
I have a chance to get a BBE Orange "something or other". Should I go for it?

derek2400
01-08-2012, 04:54 PM
Orange Squash compressor. Any good????

mutantrock
01-08-2012, 08:10 PM
I am not familiar with the BBE pedal. The name implies it is similar to an orange squeezer pedal. The orange squeezer is heard on the famous song "Sultans of Swing" by Dire Straits applied to a Fender Strat.

KevWind
01-08-2012, 08:13 PM
I haven't been gigin' for about a year but when I get back into it this is one I am going to get $349 msrphttp://www.fmraudio.com/arc.htm

RockerDuck
01-09-2012, 02:23 PM
Orange Squash compressor. Any good????

This pedal is copied from a MXR dyna comp. Its made for country picking, not acoustic. The BBE Optical compressor is the best choice I know of outside of studio grade compressors. However, the Yamaha is still cheaper and better.

Joseph Hanna
01-09-2012, 03:35 PM
The BBE Optical compressor is the best choice I know of outside of studio grade compressors. However, the Yamaha is still cheaper and better.

Could you clarify?

soma5
01-09-2012, 04:27 PM
It is not easy to dial in a good level of compression for the acoustic guitar, in my experience. I think you will find that too little quickly morphs to too much as you play with the knobs. My take on it is that if you are within a fraction of getting all the tone you want, then a small bit of compression will help you the rest of the way. That said, a compressor pedal isn't that expensive and they are quite salable if you don't like the effect if you get one of the highly-rated ones.

The easiest pedal I know of to set up is the Barber Tone Press. This pedal mixes the compressed signal with the unmodified signal in a combination that you set. I use it on my electric rig but not on my acoustic one.

Best of luck in getting the effect you seek. Post back and let us know how it went.

derek2400
01-10-2012, 01:39 AM
I picked up the BBE Orange Squash. Plan to plug in today. I`ll let you all know. Thanks for all the help.:)

derek2400
01-10-2012, 02:31 PM
Well, I gotta tell you. So far so good. Does not color your sound at all. I plan to tinker some more with it. I just had it on my Dazzos. Plan to run full system soon. Keep ya`ll posted.

Barnzy
01-11-2012, 06:47 PM
A really good pedal compressor for use with acoustic (UST) pickups is the Diamond CPR-1 compressor pedal. It is an opto-compressor that is very quiet and transparent in its functioning. It also has a unique Tilt EQ that comes in handy for overall tone shaping. I use it for electric and for acoustic and it excells at both.
Thanks,
Barnzy

derek2400
01-14-2012, 01:52 AM
Ok....now the question...where in my signal chain should the compressor go? I have a chorus, eq, reverb, and tuner. All BOSS. Just to get the most out of everything. I know it`s trial and error and personal taste...but... as I`ve read, there are some critical choices to be made. Thanks again for all your help!

NoPicks
01-14-2012, 05:00 AM
For an in-depth explanation of what a compressor can (and can't....) do for you, plus excellent reviews of many of the available options, both new and used, check out Compressor Reviews (http://www.ovnilab.com/)

Start with the FAQ before wading into the specific reviews

The site is written and maintained by a TalkBass member, but I've found the site extremely useful for choosing a compressor for many other applications, including acoustic guitar

MineField316
01-14-2012, 04:02 PM
Ok....now the question...where in my signal chain should the compressor go? I have a chorus, eq, reverb, and tuner. All BOSS. Just to get the most out of everything. I know it`s trial and error and personal taste...but... as I`ve read, there are some critical choices to be made. Thanks again for all your help!

I always try to put it as close to the end of the signal chain as possible then work backwards from there until you get the sound and control you want.

Experiment, experiment, experiment...

haithereimazn
01-15-2012, 01:47 AM
anyone have any feedback with the Tone Press or FX Engineering Mirage?

I'm also looking for a compressor pedal...but mostly want to use it as a limiter of sorts.

also, what are some better, less expensive compressor pedals out there?

buzzardwhiskey
01-15-2012, 08:38 AM
There is a compressor knob built in to the Fishman Platinum Pro EQ/DI box. I use about 1/4 and it smooths out the sound of my strumming almost imperceptibly. If I use more than about 1/2 way the character of the individual string picks is changed and that's not what I want.

Barnzy
01-16-2012, 07:26 PM
Ok....now the question...where in my signal chain should the compressor go? I have a chorus, eq, reverb, and tuner. All BOSS. Just to get the most out of everything. I know it`s trial and error and personal taste...but... as I`ve read, there are some critical choices to be made. Thanks again for all your help!

I suggest that your order should be comp first, with chorus and then reverb last. The EQ could go in a few places depending on what you are trying to tone shape (could start chain, end it or in middle...you choose with your ears.) I try to keep tuners out of my signal chain, so an a/b box would be nice or a clip on headstock tuner works well also. But keep it if you'd like.
I'd have a good DI at the very end for balancing and impedence correction. Then you go into the XLR input of a mixer and sound like a million bucks!
Barnzy

pitner
01-16-2012, 08:28 PM
I suggest that your order should be comp first, with chorus and then reverb last. The EQ could go in a few places depending on what you are trying to tone shape (could start chain, end it or in middle...you choose with your ears.) I try to keep tuners out of my signal chain, so an a/b box would be nice or a clip on headstock tuner works well also. But keep it if you'd like.
I'd have a good DI at the very end for balancing and impedence correction. Then you go into the XLR input of a mixer and sound like a million bucks!
Barnzy

I have to agree on this order. I use this same chain for both electric and acoustic. In fact I use the same pedalboard for both but when playing acoustic I stay away from the overdrives and fuzz.

derek2400
01-17-2012, 01:55 AM
Nice! I`ll try this route. I shouldn`t need a DI if I`m going into a Raven Labs PMBII should I? It already has XLR DI capabilities. Thank you for all your help. Dang...there are smart people on here. I love it!

Barnzy
01-17-2012, 08:19 AM
Nice! I`ll try this route. I shouldn`t need a DI if I`m going into a Raven Labs PMBII should I? It already has XLR DI capabilities. Thank you for all your help. Dang...there are smart people on here. I love it!
...no other DI needed for you...Your PMBII covers that....
Barnzy

Jim Jones
02-23-2012, 07:29 PM
I have a Martin JC16RE aura and I borrowed a MXR custom comp to try out and it isvery nice. It is dead quiet and adds a clarity with no coloring. I ran it through my friends board with a TC hall of fame and TC flashback set very lightly. I ran it all through the effects loop of my BBE acoustimax and it sounded wonderful...