Everyone said I needed one

StratUp

Most Honored Senior Member
Sep 5, 2020
9,989
Altered States
Mainly country pickin' is the impression I'm getting. I do (or attempt to do?!) that a lot, hence my buying a compressor.
I think that's mostly obtained obtained by playing with attack and ratio. Emphasizes the cluck. Stay away from clipping and sustain/ clipping.

i dont know if a CS3 will give you that. I think it's geared more toward sustain, clipping, and distortion. But guys who play country can tell you. Not my thing.
 

Handsome McClane

Senior Stratmaster
Sep 6, 2020
2,136
Sacramento
I got myself a CS3 about 15 years ago and all I can figure out is that it makes noise if you turn it up to where you can actually hear it compressing. Just been sitting in a box for many years along with half a dozen other dud pedals.
 

Nick L Plate

Strat-Talker
Sep 15, 2020
460
Santa Barbara
If you can't hear any effect, try turning the knobs. Seriously. That compressor will yield a wide range of squashing (reducing the difference between loudest/softest signal) and considerably increased sustain. Of course, this will happen at the expense of snap and innumerable other sound qualities that you may prefer over the compressed sound.
I no longer use a compressor much, but it's ridiculous to just dismiss an effect that has been used on virtually every Nashville production since... ever... and is in general use on virtually every recording, in every genre, today. And compressors don't need to sound like elastic bands of tone stiflers. I have no idea if Knopfler used a compressor, but you can get some of his great tones with compression. Ditto, Byrds. And lots of the saturated/saggy massive rock tones can be emulated with intelligent use of a compressor in low-volume environments.
 

touch of gray

Strat-O-Master
Jul 10, 2022
592
Bismarck, ND
If you can't hear any effect, try turning the knobs. Seriously. That compressor will yield a wide range of squashing (reducing the difference between loudest/softest signal) and considerably increased sustain. Of course, this will happen at the expense of snap and innumerable other sound qualities that you may prefer over the compressed sound.
I no longer use a compressor much, but it's ridiculous to just dismiss an effect that has been used on virtually every Nashville production since... ever... and is in general use on virtually every recording, in every genre, today. And compressors don't need to sound like elastic bands of tone stiflers. I have no idea if Knopfler used a compressor, but you can get some of his great tones with compression. Ditto, Byrds. And lots of the saturated/saggy massive rock tones can be emulated with intelligent use of a compressor in low-volume environments.
Compressors can also do some pretty great things when combined with other pedals. Chicken picking with one plus delay and reverb is an obvious combination. But I like what they do with modulation, especially chorus, as well as overdrive and even fuzz pedals.
 

StratUp

Most Honored Senior Member
Sep 5, 2020
9,989
Altered States
I like the sustain, but finding mine (Wampler Ego Mini) to be pretty noisy.

Some of that is inherent in the technology. A compressor tries to level the sound. In essence, the noise in the line (low) is treated like any other (low) sound and is effectively made louder. So, a compressor is "noisy".

The only way to counteract that would be to have a noise filter (which some people hate) or use digital programming/compressing to actually look or noise and reduce it (which some people hate). Most compressors are far simpler devices.

Putting the compressor first so as to avoid creating any extra noise before it is generally advisable.
 

Red Bread

Strat-O-Master
Feb 1, 2019
696
Green mountains
It all depends on pick ups,what other effects you use and playing style,,in my opinion

I prefer running my comp in beginning of my effects chain which eliminates and noise a comp pedal might put out
I use two MXR’s dyna comps,older 2 knob and the newer mini version with added attack and i have a noise gate built in my MXR 5150 pedal that catches any loose noise
It all comes together and levels my tone and keeps it all linear and tight
That said i really get more tonal benifits from compression with singal coil or P90 pick ups then humbuckers,or atleast a more pronounced tonal benifit
If your trying to clean up and or tighten up your tone be paitent and spend the time finding the right place in your chain and the right combo or your equipment to utilize compression to it fullest extent
Watch some YouTube on its uses and benifits
Youll get it once you figure out were it works for you
Think of it as sandpaper,,,use it to round the ruff spots and smooth over your tone
 

Red Bread

Strat-O-Master
Feb 1, 2019
696
Green mountains
Best way i can explain the attack button is it allows my pinches,vibrato and harder hit notes to stay peaked longer before it compresses and levels the whole tone
Like sustain but more for individual notes i pick harder over the entire signal
 

grritz

The guitar plays me
Silver Member
May 2, 2014
1,115
Rock Hill, SC
You’re not missing anything. In my opinion compressor pedals suck tone, and kill the dynamics. That’s why I don’t like them.
My opinion, precisely. I've tried compressor pedals — from fairly cheap to very expensive — at least four or five times, and they never gave me anything that would make me want to keep them.
I've decided I'm no longer going down that rabbit hole.
...I want to be in control of my own dynamics.
^This, too!^
 

J-Mart

Senior Stratmaster
Jul 17, 2020
1,355
Tx
Great for cleans and arpeggios. Also lets you fit in the mix better when playing with others. Gets rid of any "boomy-ness" or sogginess from loose amps. I use mine to give me some pop and sustain on my cleans.
 

Tratocaster

Strat-Talker
Mar 22, 2013
471
Colorado
A compressor, that is. Well, bought me a Boss CS-3, which is, I’m told, a good basic unit. Just been playing about with it for an hour or so. Honestly? Well, I can hear a sound change when I play whilst turning it on and off and on and off and…………but exactly what it’s doing to the sound, I’m not sure. OK, single notes seem to ring longer with it on and the sustain above 1/2 but that’s about it. I have by no means a refined ear but, apart from the Level knob increasing and decreasing the volume, (seems to work in tandem with the sustain knob?), the changes seem marginal. I’m heading to YouTube to listen to some demos. Am I missing something, are there some magic settings I don’t know about, do the guitar and amp settings determine the effect the pedal has? Just really looking to be educated in the art of compressing!
Proof that people will do whatever someone on the interwebs tells them if they have money to burn and will blindly hand it over to someone else if they are convinced that it will take them to the next level as a player even when they have no idea what that particular product/pedal does. Sorry if that's harsh, but it's the truth. How are you even going to be able to hear or know what a pedal is doing to your sound if you can't understand what the pedal actually does?

Compressors reduce the sumac range, plain and simple while possibly adding their own bit of "color" to the sound. TO put it in it's simplest terms, a compressor will make the loud sounds less loud and the quiet sounds louder.
 
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Tratocaster

Strat-Talker
Mar 22, 2013
471
Colorado
You’re not missing anything. In my opinion compressor pedals suck tone, and kill the dynamics. That’s why I don’t like them.
That's what compressors do. If you dont understand that or go to far with one, sure it's going to sound like crap, but if you're looking to smooth out transient peaks and made those quiet portions a little louder so it can be heard a little better, that's what they do.

Too many people get a compressor without even understanding what dynamic range is, crank the knobs all the way to one side or the other and say that the pedal either does nothing, or their sound is ruined and too squashed and the tone sucks now. It's supposed to be a subtle effect and one that you never even knew was applied...until you turn it off and then can hear the noticeable, but subtle difference unless you're actually going for that "pumping", compressed effect.

Compressors aren't like other pedals where you can jsut plug it in and get great sounds no matter where you set the knobs. It takes and understanding of what compression is and what the controls actually do to your sound. Kind of like the difference between driving an automatic and a manual. Everyone that can drive can drive an automatic, but not everyone knows how to drive a manual.
 

Wrighty

Dr. Stratster
Mar 7, 2013
11,892
Harlow, Essex, UK
Proof that people will do whatever someone on the interwebs tells them if they have money to burn and will blindly hand it over to someone else if they are convinced that it will take them to the next level as a player even when they have no idea what that particular product/pedal does. Sorry if that's harsh, but it's the truth. How are you even going to be able to hear or know what a pedal is doing to your sound if you can't understand what the pedal actually does?

Compressors reduce the sumac range, plain and simple while possibly adding their own bit of "color" to the sound. TO put it in it's simplest terms, a compressor will make the loud sounds less loud and the quiet sounds louder.
I know what it does, I’m just not sure I can hear it doing it! Your reference to a Mediterranean spice plant have lost me……………..😀
 


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