Source Audio Atlas Compressor SA252
The Atlas is packed with so many different types of compression that it could serve as a tour guide through the history of compressor equipment. First stop: classic stompbox squashers such as the legendary the Dan Armstrong Orange Squeezer and the excellent (but discontinued) Diamond Compressor. Next stop: universal and ubiquitous studio rack gear like the smooth and gentle LA2A optical compressor and the ultra-responsive 1176 FET compressor. Finally, we’re taking you to all-out nerd territory with Peak, RMS, VCA, and Dual compression, and an onboard Expander circuit… the Atlas has it all and does it well.
The Optical Rack compressor engine is based on the legendary LA2A studio opto compressors from the early 60s. Optical compression controls its output level with light. Increasing the incoming audio level in the original units caused an electro luminescent panel to shine brighter. A photo resistor monitors that light panel and decreased the audio output level, as the panel got brighter. The result is a very smooth and gentle attack that imparts a full-bodied and natural sound on guitar, bass, or vocal. This compressor sounds great with clean strummed or arpeggiated guitar lines as well as acoustic guitars.
"Offering up a deep library of compression options in a pedal is a landmark technical achievement. We started working on compression in 2007. At the time we developed some straightforward, high-end studio stuff that made it into the original Multiwave a year later. The research project to branch out and cover more simple classic pedal sounds and create a dedicated compression pedal was delayed, because the intricacies of how transistors behave in compression circuits was especially illusive. After ten years of additional research, new thinking, and more experience, we are finally ready to launch a landmark pedal: The Atlas Compressor. From classic rack studio units, to classic pedals of many flavors, and even to the experience of high-end computer plug-ins, Atlas covers all the bases with attention to detail that is the hallmark of our development team. Bob Chidlaw, Jesse Remignanti, and Christopher Venter worked long and hard on this one and I'm excited to finally share it with the rest of the world."
We have made it easy to transform the Atlas into a bass guitar specific compression machine. With the push of a button, you can convert all six of Atlas’ onboard factory presets into low-end responsive compression engines, precisely optimized for the complexities of the bass guitar. The dynamic range and attack characteristics are much different for bass than guitar. Typically, to achieve a smooth compressed bass tone, the attack and release ranges for compressors such as the 1176 FET compressor and LED optical compressors need to be dialed-in accordingly. Likewise, in dual compression modes, the cutoff frequency that separates the lower band from the higher band needs adjustments to accommodate the specific frequency range of bass guitar. It is all part of our mission to make the Atlas Compressor the most flexible and easy-to-use compression workstation on the planet.