NPD - Wampler Ego Comp - "Here comes the bride!"

2009LPGT

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Well gents, throw me a bachelor party, I’m gettin’ hitched!! This is THE compressor of my wet dreams! It is easily the most inspiring box I have purchased since my King of Tone. Everything about it is just so musical. It makes my strat dance and sing!

However, it’s funny how two twins can look exactly alike but one is a turn off and one is the love of your life. My first Ego compressor that I bought new about two years ago currently tops my “most disappointing pedal purchase” list. It was just the brightest, nastiest sounding thing! It was literally on its way back to Brian in less than an hour (His wife was astounded that I did not like it but she was so gracious, wonderful folks!) Well so many people speak so highly of this thing and I had heard that Brian had since tweaked the brightness issue, so when my beloved CS-3’s buffer was taking some of the spark out of my KOT, I figured I would give it another try. Damn, am I glad I did!!

Just a quick background of compressors and me. I have owned and tried most of the usual and high-end suspects:

MXR Dyna-comp – squishy and noisy, coolish though

MXR Super Comp – utterly useless, for me anyway

MXR Custom Comp – excellent compressor, felt a bit slow but great sound. My favorite next to the CS-3 and now the Ego

Analogman – Bi-Comp & Mini Bi-Comp, I really tried hard to like these, I am a big analogman fan and they sound fantastic and are pretty versatile, but again it just feels like it’s slowing down/fighting my playing.

Keeley 4 knob – tried hard to like this one also. Felt good but it is dark and added noise not normally inherent in a compressor. They all add noise but mine had something else going on. Through a blackface or a Vox it probably works quite well, but it was not voiced for my tweed preference.

Boss CS-2 – Again too dark but buttery smooth!

Demeter Compulator – total funk machine! Not subtle but pretty sweet! It was not the best chicken pickin’ unit and it has to do that for me!

Barber Tone Press – really nice compressor. It was a bit noisy, but had a nice voice and was versatile with the blend knob. If the Ego had not worked out, I may have tried this again.

The Boss CS-3 – I have always come back to this unit. There is just something in the way it compresses the note. It is wicked fast, buttery smooth and the tone control allows you to get the tone you need through your amp. Its weakness? Well putting buffers before drive pedals can sometimes take the life and dynamics out of your sound. It does not handle all notes equally. Some notes just pop and spank and some sound muted and dull. The sustained signal is a bit “lo-fi” sounding; but all and all, I just love the thing and it has been my favorite, until now…

The Wampler EGO has it all! Low noise, clear signal, fast response and super musical! The blend knob is wonderful! Usually blend knobs don’t do anything for me but this one actually works, restoring your attack almost completely while sustaining the note. The effect blends beautifully with OD and distortion. It actually works as a clean boost, it doesn’t just say it can. It chicken picks big time!! Lot of Paisley sound in this pedal for sure! But it also jangles like the old Byrds recordings, I wish I had a 12 string now! It does a great job of subtly leveling out rhythm playing and it just sits in the mix really nice. When sustaining notes, it does it very smooth and natural, no volume swells!

First strum on this pedal and I immediately knew it was something special. It has a synergy to the sound. It results in a sound that is greater than the sum of its parts if that makes sense. It is so opposite of my first Ego experience but I am ecstatic I gave it another shot! Like OD, I can now cross compressor off my list, this one sounds like what you hope your compressor will sound like!!

AWESOME PEDAL!!!
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Hector Arcadius

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:thumb:

Very good to see that BW just cured your comp-gas, bro! I have always felt that the Ego could be the perfect compressor for you (don't know why) and I was always surprised that it didn't work out for you in the first place. From my little experience with his work, the guy truly seems to put out some very well thought & designed pedals with useful features that make them work for every rig.

Cool stuff!:)
 

Batman

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Excellent review and, more importantly to me, a very nice comparison of the other comps you have tried.

I struggle with the need for a comp and have tried the Dyna and Super Comp and had very similar experiences with them.

I really liked how musical the Diamond Compressor was but ultimately I like a dynamic sound and using a compressor runs counter to this so it got returned as well.
 

2009LPGT

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Hnpd and congrats on the happy occasion! :D

Thanks man!

:thumb:

Very good to see that BW just cured your comp-gas, bro! I have always felt that the Ego could be the perfect compressor for you (don't know why) and I was always surprised that it didn't work out for you in the first place. From my little experience with his work, the guy truly seems to put out some very well thought & designed pedals with useful features that make them work for every rig.

Cool stuff!:)

Yeah me too, but that first one I tried just must have been wacked out. I mean people were loving them two years ago so maybe I got a rare lemon. It really was simply unusable. This one is completely different and wunderbar!!

Thank you for a great review......

My pleasure!

Excellent review and, more importantly to me, a very nice comparison of the other comps you have tried.

I struggle with the need for a comp and have tried the Dyna and Super Comp and had very similar experiences with them.

I really liked how musical the Diamond Compressor was but ultimately I like a dynamic sound and using a compressor runs counter to this so it got returned as well.

I have not tried the Diamond, easily the big hole in my list. The blend knob on a compressor is the key. It leaves your dynamics in tact but still adds the effect of compression to the sound. Simply great! Try a Tone Press or an Ego if you get a chance!:thumb:
 

GrouchyDog

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HNPD, glad you found a good one! And good review too, esp. the comparisons.
 

kboman

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The blend knob on a compressor is the key. It leaves your dynamics in tact but still adds the effect of compression to the sound. Simply great! Try a Tone Press or an Ego if you get a chance!:thumb:

Funny - I got a compressor specifically to not leave the dynamics intact, I wanted the evening out of levels. Worked out great. I've got a Swede, I have plenty of sustain :thumb:
 

gibsonguitar1988

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YES YOU DO!! Make this one a priority Austin, it nails so many compressed tones and does in a way that inspires your playing. I guarantee this one will make YOU smile!

Definitely will do that! The Wampler Artist Relations/Webmaster is on my FB list and he's told me the same - that I need to try the Ego Comp...

How does it work with humbuckers? Most Dyna type comps really don't like HB's I've found.
 

2009LPGT

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HNPD, glad you found a good one! And good review too, esp. the comparisons.

Thanks Grouchster! Since I have had a few, I thought a bit of my experience could be helpful to frame the EGO.

Funny - I got a compressor specifically to not leave the dynamics intact, I wanted the evening out of levels. Worked out great. I've got a Swede, I have plenty of sustain :thumb:

Never heard of the "Swede," will have to look it up. The Blend knob just gives you options and I do use the compressor in several ways so its handy for me.:thumb:

Definitely will do that! The Wampler Artist Relations/Webmaster is on my FB list and he's told me the same - that I need to try the Ego Comp...

How does it work with humbuckers? Most Dyna type comps really don't like HB's I've found.

Had to wait for lunch time to check, went right to the single coils first for the chicken pickin' thing. :laugh2: However, its brilliant with the Les Paul! Did not want to come back to work! You just get lost in the beauty of the sound! Much better choice for the organ stuff I do as well!!:dude:

In the info sheet that comes with the unit it says that it is a "no compromises compressor." For me at least, it a 100% accurate statement!

Really cool.
Congrats!

Thanks! Glad you likey!! :wave:
 

Quill

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Best compressor post I've seen - thanks! I was just at my favourite pedal shop, trying compressors ... Almost took home a Keeley, but both the two-knob and the four-knob that I tried seemed noisy and didn't sing the way the two-knob I tried about a year ago sang (should have bought that one - they all are a little different). And they're a lot of money, too. Tried a bunch of others, too ... but I couldn't try the Ego, because they were all sold out. Guess someone here knows why!
 

DHart

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I still use the Dyna Comp I bought in the mid seventies. Yes, I'm a compressor lover too. But the Dyna Comp is really noisy and I most certainly didn't know what I was missing until reading your post. Thanks so much for laying out the compressor horizon for me. Looks like I'm going to order up an Ego Comp and retire my 35 year old Dyna Comp.
 

2009LPGT

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Hagström Swede, one of the current reissues (mine is a 2007). Amazing guitar for the price!

Ooohhhh, I feel only a little ignorant now!:D

I still use the Dyna Comp I bought in the mid seventies. Yes, I'm a compressor lover too. But the Dyna Comp is really noisy and I most certainly didn't know what I was missing until reading your post. Thanks so much for laying out the compressor horizon for me. Looks like I'm going to order up an Ego Comp and retire my 35 year old Dyna Comp.

Highly recommend it but for criminy sakes, don't sell the Dyna!! Can't let old faithfuls go! With pedals it is ok to have a "mistress!"
 

StandingWave

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Hagström Swede, one of the current reissues (mine is a 2007). Amazing guitar for the price!
A local shop is carrying Hagströms now and they look pretty nice. They stock a baritone and a 12-string, among others.
 

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