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28 of the Best Compact Enclosure Compressor Pedals - 2020 Ultimate Selection

Analog.ManBarber ElectronicsBecos FXBondi EffectsBossCompressorDarkglass ElectronicsDiamond PedalsDryBell EffectsEarthQuaker DevicesEmerson EffectsEmpress EffectsFoxpedalFriedman EffectsGreer AmpsJ RockettJackson AudioJHS PedalsKeeley EngineeringMad Professor EffectsMXROhmless PedalsOrigin EffectsOvni FXPettyjohn ElectronicsTC ElectronicThorpyFXUtilityWalrus AudioWampler+-
2020GPX28BestCompactCompressors700V2.jpg

I’ve encountered a number of ’Best Compressor’ articles this year which I really felt were not fully representative of the very best of what is out there. That was the catalyst for this feature, along with a couple of new compressors I had not properly featured yet, and the fact that I’ve not done a Compressor round-up for a good couple of years now.

 

Pretty much all the compressors listed here are / were already known to me, while I picked up a few new ones ...

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TC Electronic Finally Reveals Details for its much teased Plethora X5 TonePrint Pedalboard Multi-FX Unit

Chorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDown-TunerFlangerHarmonizerLooperModulationModulation WorkstationNoise GateOctaverPedalboard and Pedal-ChainPhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingReverbReverb WorkstationRotary SpeakerTC ElectronicTremoloUni-Vibe and VibeUtility+-
2020GPXTCElectronicPlethoraX5700.jpg

We’ve been waiting for the full reveal on this one for a while as the first teaser image for this was Insta’d on the 14th of September last year. There were some expectations that this might feature at Winter NAMM, but it seems it’s only now fully formed.

 

What we have here then is all of TC Electronic’s TonePrint-enabled pedals in a single unit and available across 5 any way configurable slots. This means you get all the different variations of effects from the ...

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2020GPX3xBecosProCompression700.jpg

I’ve featured Becos FX on this site a few times now - under Edits (for the CompIQ Stella and CompIQ Mini), so it was about time I dedicated a full article to this Romanian Compressor Specialist - AKA Costel Barac. The occasion here is the release of his most comprehensive and feature-rich compressor to date - looks like a 1590BB style enclosure which features near enough 2 CompIQ Stellas sort of side-by-side with no less than 15 control knobs and 6 switches - and where you can either ...

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Hamstead Soundworks Finally Unveils Zenith Clean Boost + EQ + Compressor

BoostBoost and OverdriveCompressorEQHamstead SoundworksUtility+-
2020GPXHamsteadZenith700.jpg

This is one of the more clandestine pedals from the recent NAMM Show where Hamstead weirdly kept this secret for an extended duration - I could sort of pick out the name from a couple of NAMM footage videos, and there was a teaser image which revealed all but the first knob. Several people guessed it would be a compressor, and they were partially right.

 

In fact it’s functionally really more of an advanced 3-Band EQ with sort of Parametric Mids via 3-way frequency-selector toggle ...

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2019 Pedal-Chain Year-End Final Arrangement!

12 Degrees of SaturationAleks K ProductionAmbient EffectsBearfoot FXBeat MachineBeetronics FXBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionBufferChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCompressorDanDrive PedalDelayDelay WorkstationDemon PedalsDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEchoverbEmpress EffectsEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQEventideExpresso FXFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGuitar Synth and SequencerHarmonizerJackson AudioKeyztoneKlone and Transparent OverdriveLo-Fi DelayLooperMarshall Style DistortionMeris EffectsMetal DistortionMI EffectsModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveMu-TronNoise GateOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOctaverOddball DelayOddball FuzzOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingPlate ReverbRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationREVV AmplificationRing ModulationRotary SpeakerShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSinvertekSitek Guitar ElectronicsSlicer and StutterSource AudioSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbStrymonTape DelayTC ElectronicThorpyFXToneQuestTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeVox Style DistortionWah and Fixed Wah+-
2019GPXSKSignalChainYEFinal700.jpg

I’m possibly writing this just a touch prematurely as at the point of writing - one of the pictured pedals hasn’t turned up quite yet, and it will be touch and go if gets released out of customs before the end of the year. That pedal being Sinvertek’s new N5+ Drive - featuring no less than 7 beautifully milled aluminium knobs along with 5 toggle-switches - and all within a compact enclosure format - but more of that later.

 

This year has mostly sort of gone to plan - ...

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Mini Pedals State of the Art PT 1 : Nine leading examples of Contemporary Mini Pedal Smart Engineering

Ambient EffectsAmp and Cab IR SimBanana EffectsBecos FXBig Muff Style FuzzBoost and OverdriveCompressorDecibelicsDigital ReverbDistortionDSM NoisemakerFree Fall DiverFunction F(X)FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGuitar Synth and SequencerKlone and Transparent OverdriveMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulationMooerMulti-DriveOddball FuzzPigtronixReverbReverb WorkstationShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleUtilityXotic Effects+-
2019GPXMiniPedalStateOfArt700V3.jpg

This is my 3rd re-write from scratch of this article - I keep coming across new details! This was initially inspired by the arrival of Mooer’s E7 series - first represented by the Tone Capture GTR, and now by the very recent 7-Mode/7-Presets E7 Synth pedal which continues that distinctive new enclosure format - which is in someways an evolution from Mooer’s Micro-PreAmps - with the same 5 mini knobs and push-button topology, but here accompanied by 7 Mode/Preset LEDs positioned down...

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Best of ThorpyFX Pedals - Actually all 10 are Great!

Big Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveBufferChorus and VibratoCompressorDistortionDriveEffects Pedal MakersEQFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionKlone and Transparent OverdriveMarshall Style DistortionModulationOverdriveRat Style FuzzThorpyFXUtility+-
2019GPXThorpyOverview700V2.jpg

My first exposure to Thorpy - way back when, was the then monikered Muffroom Cloud Fuzz - a fantastic sounding and really versatile take on the original Triangle version EXH Big Muff Pi. At the time though I was slightly put off by the somewhat over-sized enclosure - which was both significantly longer and wider than my preferred compact enclosure size - so I campaigned hard to have Thorpy bring the box down in size somewhat. This did not look like it was going to happen - and I eventually ...

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Pedal Design 101 - Pedal Primary Colour Wheel and which Pedals 'Own' a particular Colour

Analog DelayBlues Driver Style OverdriveBondi EffectsBoost and OverdriveBossCompressorDelayDiamond PedalsDistortionDriveFlangerGuitar Gear Improvements and PrototypesIbanezLovepedalMarshall Style DistortionModulationMXROverdrivePhaserTremoloT-Rex EffectsTubescreamer Style OverdriveUtility+-
2019GPXPedalColourWheel700V2.jpg

Update! This feature inspired 7 further articles - Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Sky Blue and Purple.

 

This feature was inspired by a couple of different events - firstly ongoing conversations I have been having with Fjord Fuzz’s Daniel Thornhill about the colour of LEDs for different pedal types, and secondly an odd Q&A episode of That Pedal Show where Dan was trying to match a pedal to the colour of his yellow trousers or pants as some of you like to call them.

  ...

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Pedal Design 101 - The Renaissance of Carl Martin

BoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionCarl MartinChorus and VibratoCompressorDistortionEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQFlangerFuzzGuitar Gear Improvements and PrototypesModulationOverdriveSilicon FuzzTremoloUni-Vibe and VibeUtility+-
2019GPX9BestV2CarlMartin700-min.jpg

It has to be said that Carl Martin - a long-standing Danish pedal-builder of high pro-gear repute - was starting to look somewhat fusty and old-fashioned there for a while. And while some brands would look to simply refresh their graphics and update things in a largely superficial manner - Carl Martin set to designing an entirely new compact enclosure for its Vintage Series of pedals.

 

The incumbent pedals were in rather uninteresting medium enclosures while the degree of innovation and...

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Best of Australian and New Zealander Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

Ambient EffectsAnalog DelayAnarchy AudioBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Driver Style OverdriveBondi EffectsBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoCompressorCrowther AudioDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDriveDual-DriveEchoverbEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahExpressionFlux EffectsFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzKlone and Transparent OverdriveLastgasp Art LaboratoriesLightning Wave EffectsLo-Fi DelayLoop-SwitcherMarshall Style DistortionMC SystemsMetal DistortionMI EffectsMidnight AmplificationModulationMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePepers' PedalsPhaserPitchPoly EffectsRed Witch EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationSelah EffectsShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbSplitter and Frequency SplitterTape DelayTone Bender Style FuzzTremoloTube OverdriveTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVolumeWah and Fixed Wah+-
2019GPXAustraliaNewZealandPedals700-min.jpg

Australia and New Zealand together have a fair few brands of international repute, and I for one certainly have a number of pedals of Australian origin in my collection. Foremost amongst those is Michael Ibrahim’s eponymous MI Audio / MI Effects - from which range past and present - I have 7 to date - with a couple more on the ’nice-to-have’ wishlist. Of the ones I have 2 are permanent features in my pedal-chain - the Super Crunch Box V2 (my Brown Sound pedal of choice) and ...

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