Compressor pedals may not be on the top of your shopping list and if you do have one, it might be the case of it causing more harm to your tones, than good. However, a compressor is a powerful tool for enhancing your tones and squeezing that little extra out of your pickups. The Effectrode PC-2A Compressor offer high-end vintage studio compression in a single stompbox. Here’s my review.
I’ve always used compressors, including all the vintage classics like the Boss CS-2, MXR script DynaComp, Ross etc. It’s really essential for beefing up your single coils and getting that rich sustain. Cleans gets nice and squeezed and overdrives, smooth and balanced. But too much compression can do the opposite and completely choke your tones. It should be used with care. Most stompbox compressors often sound a bit too aggressive and sterile though. They can’t really replicate the compression you get from those old tube studio units. Enter, the PC-2A Compressor.
The PC-2A feature a pure analog tube circuit producing a huge headroom and a very quiet, natural sound reproduction. The TRex-sized box feature a gain control, based on a resistive photocell, limiting the amount of distortion entering into the signal and a peak reduction control. A mini toggle switch at the top of the pedal, allows you to switch between standard compression mode and a limiter, for even punchier squeeze. The PC-2A feature true bypass switching, and easy to see status led and it runs on 12V adapter. See Effectorde.Com for more technical details.
The PC-2A is far from your average pedal compressor and you may even find it a bit hard to set up and incorporate into your tones, if you’re used the more familiar solid state counterpart. But, forget everything you know about pedal compressors. Once you find your settings on the PC-2A, there’s really no turning back.
I’ve been trying to figure out how to describe this pedal. After all, it’s not as evident as a distortion or a delay. A mild compression will tighten up your cleans, add a bit of twang and punch. Your overdrives and distortions gets more focused and sustained. Increase the compression and your cleans sings and it feels like your fingers are dancing up and down the neck. Your overdrives and distortions are covered in smooth velvet with the sweetest sustain imaginable. Switch over to the limiter mode and squeeze the last drops of tone out of your guitar. Perhaps a bit too much for your rhythms but very nice on heavy distortions and leads.
The PC-2A Compressor is designed to operate as a studio unit. It’s versatility allows you to hook it up to any instrument or vocal mic. It‘s also an invaluable companion to your digital recording interface, such as Line 6 PODs or even in front of a computer running Guitar Rig or similar. The PC-2A rolls of those harsh, digital overtones and nasty transients.
There are two things in particular I love about the PC-2A. One, it’s dead silent. Two, by maxing the gain and rolling down the peak reduction all the way, you got yourself booster pushing your amp over the edge for fat and creamy tube overdrive! So, there you have it. Instead of buying yet another overdrive, chorus or even a solid state compressor, do your self a favour and check out the Effectrode PC-2A. It’ll do wonders for your tones!
The Compressor was tested for both stage and home setups with a Reeves Custom 50 and a Laney CUB12 with both single coils and humbuckers.