Vintage-style 500 compressor.
The COMP-554 is a one-channel vintage style compressor for the 500-format. The signal path uses only discrete components like resistors, capacitors and transistors. The input and output are transformer balanced and the unit also uses a third interstage transformer.
This is the way audio components were built before integrated circuits became available. IC's are small and cheap and they are widely used in most modern designs. It is clear though that audio components built with modern technology don’t always provide the best sound quality or character the modern user desires.
On the contrary, the subjective sound quality delivered by vintage equipment is often preferred over the one delivered by modern units. This is the reason why so many vintage audio components are cloned and produced again and also why the vintage originals are often very expensive on the second hand market.
The class-A circuit used in the COMP-554 is similar to the one in the classic 2254 compressor that was designed in 1969. It quickly became a legend due to its warm, smooth, sweet and musical character of sound.
Flexible control range for threshold, ratio, attack and recovery
All controls except the gain make-up one are stepped
Three selectable sidechain filter frequencies
Three flexible sidesidechainchain options: Internal, Insert and External
The external sidechain I/O is electronically balanced @ 4dBu and appears on the right slot rack connections
Separate switches for hardwire bypass and compression out
Two insert connectors for inserting the EQ-573 in the main audio and/or sidechain signal path
Meter selectable for output (two reference levels, +4 and +12 dBu) and gain reduction
Three position Air EQ switch, Flat, +3 or +6 dB @ 30 kHz
Two position output termination switch for different tones
Compression the way is was meant to sound.
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