1 Proteus 4 months ago On this, the occasion on which I've put one up for sale, it seemed apposite to compose this compressor family portrait before it goes away. (Had I been more foresightful, I would have taken the pic weeks ago when I had just gotten the Wampler Mini Ego, but still had the much-loved Xotic SP.)What we see here are the even dozen compression pedals currently in my inventory - one remaining for sentimental reasons, the others just so good (and/or satisfying) that every time I attempt objective comparisons with the intent to scale back, I just can't let them go.Top row, L-R: Aphex Punch Factory, Pettyjohn Crush, Origin Cali76 Compact Deluxe, Jackson Bloom, Empress Compressor. Middle row, L-R: Wampler Mini Ego, MXR Studio, Diamond, EHX Platform Stereo, Effectrode PC-2A, Boss CP-1X.Bottom row, front and center: the block-logo MXR Dyna Comp which sent me down this ever-dynamically-narrowing path, circa 1978 - but which by comparison to more modern designs, is hissy and utterly unsubtle in its rubbery embrace. At any given time, three (and sometimes four) of these are on active boards, where they provide sonic options in behavior, the benefits of different placement in the signal chain, and/or the occasional pleasures of stacked compression. While most of my pedals are securely secured to Temple Audio boards with the company's infernal and euphemistically named Quick Release Plates (which are neither easy nor quick), the compressor positions are uniformly velcro'ed, as are the pedals. (The positions are also large enough to accommodate the biggest pedals). I can swap them out in a jiffy. At the moment, the Jackson Bloom, Diamond, and Boss CP-1X are in active duty. The Mini Ego (newest to me and entirely intoxicating) and wonderful Pettyjohn (more subtle in compression but dramatic in tonal enhancement) are alternating in the compressor position at my "test station."Among the pedals there are representatives of OTA, VCA, and optical types, as well as various additional features. There's surely some sonic and behavioral overlap, but I maintain each does have its own personality. (Though nothing I say in this or subsequent posts should suggest I think the collection is justified on any objective criteria, or should be seen as anything but wanton consumerist self-indulgence.)Most of these pedals are well reviewed, but one is generally bashed by critics. No matter. They all tickle my ear in one way or another. But lest it seem I have no standards at all, I have sent as many compressors packing as I've kept. The Paths Not Taken/Bachelorettes Not Chosen include: DOD Milkbox, Boss CS-3, Cooper Custom (local builder effort), Stigtronics (the pride of Bloomington, IN), Barber Tone Press, Strymon OB-1 (the only Strymon I've ever sold), Keeley Pro, Wampler Ego, Pigtronix Philosopher’s Tone, JangleBox, Maxon CP9+ Pro, and Xotic SP.Most were rotated out for sonic / behavioral issues: grainy and artifact-ridden compression, audible surging/pumping during decay, and/or negative effect on tone (dulling or thinning). A few overlapped others or underwhelmed. For most, I simply found another pedal of the same general character which works and sounds better. (And one - the Pigtronics - is just a bad idea, badly implemented.)The Maxon, however, had absolutely no bad habits, nor does it perform "just like" any other pedal. I'd kinda like to have it back for its preternatural unobtrusive smoothness - though I rarely used it.Am I squeezed enough? Given that this list doesn't include my six rack compressors or the plug-ins I use when recording, of course. But that doesn't mean I'm done. At the moment I'm very curious about the Becos CompIQ StellaStella and Twain. Because, man - just lookit all the knobs!And maybe something from FEA Labs, because dude! Hammerite! Additional metal panel on the front. Gorgeous machined knobs! (They're supposed to sound great, too.) I may or may not have more to say in this thread about each of the pedals in the collection, their feature sets, why and what I enjoy about each. It's kinda hard to pontificate into a vacuum. But if anyone has specific questions or interest, I'm sure I can expand on ... compressing.