In part 1 of this series by Nick Mitchell from KMR Audio we looked at a selection of 500 Series modules all under £500 for the Singer Songwriter. In part 2 we are going to look at Compression 500 Series modules for the Tracking Engineer.
Compression and EQ in the 500 Series is probably the most frequently chosen option when it comes to module choice. Many units are totally awesome for mixing duties and here are a few useful compressors that may be suitable to add some analogue mojo. You may require two of these units for mix duties, or just single use for those channels that deserve some 500 love...
Two 500 Series designs from FMR Audio, one which is based upon the very popular ' Really Nice Compressor' (RNC) and a new take on this called the 'Really Nice Levelling Amp' (RNLA). Both units are excellent for mix buss duties, or stereo sources, the RNLA is a VCA compressor but has a hint of Opto about it due to the way the unit has been designed. The RNC personally I feel is clean, and transparent sounding, but depending how hard you hit it, the sound does tend to change.
Solid-State-Logic have just released their famous Listen Mic Compressor in the 500 Series format. This new version also includes High Pass and Low Pass Filters for use as a Side Chain or within the audio path and really clever use of parallel and blend options via the Scoop and Split function. Quite a versatile comp!
Based upon the larger D.A.V. Electronics BG4 unit, the BG 504 is an update to the original 1977 design presented in the 500 Series format. Bringing continuously variable Ratio control from 2:1 to 10:1, a side-chain HPF and a stereo link connection allowing proper stereo operation.
Radial provide many high quality utilitarian solutions from DI's to re-amping to Guitar / Monitor routers etc etc - but they also make some very cool sounding original modules as well. The KOMIT is a feed forward VCA style compressor but also capable of creating harmonic overload via the old school diode bridge clipping limiter. Extremely versatile.
The re-issue of the classic Dyna-mite compressor in the 500 Series format sonically stands up against the originally but includes the portability and modern day build quality. A classic sounding compressor and if you want some extreme 'bite' just dial a pair of these in over a stereo drum track and hear what the fuss is about.
In the 3rd part of this series looking at 500 Series modules under £500 we will look at EQ modules for the Mix Engineer.