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TL's most famous compressor with low-noise solid state preamp followed by two tube stages per channel.
The TL Audio C-1 compressor maintains its position among the most flexible, polished-sounding high-end compressors on the market today. Featuring a spectacular raven blue 6mm milled aluminum front panel, General Electric US military-specification valves, high retention gold-plated ceramic valve bases and circular back-lit VU meters, the C-1 is even fatter-sounding and more rugged than its legendary predecessor.
All controls are continuously variable (unlike some other compressors with switched parameters) and high-quality onboard mic preamps allow direct-to-tape recording of microphone sources. Stereo front panel instrument inputs mean a keyboard or guitar can feed straight into the C-1 and down to tape with a minimum of fuss. Whether the C-1 compressor is tracking vocals and instruments or adding roundness and warmth to a complete mix, it will become an indispensable part of your signal path within hours.
The TL Audio C-1 features a low-noise solid state preamp followed by two valve stages per channel. The valves are General Electric ECC83/12AX7A types, run from a stabilized 250v DC power supply. The first valve stage acts as a voltage amplifier, with the second stage forming part of the gain control element. The gain control is performed by TL Audio's own unique transconductance stage that avoids the use of VCAs, thus improving transparency and minimizing distortion, which is virtually constant at 0.05% over the full bandwidth. The frequency response of the C-1 compressor is virtually flat between 20Hz and 40kHz, and measured between -3dB points, the C-1's bandwidth is a staggering 5Hz to 70kHz.
About TL Audio
TL Audio began manufacturing audio products in 1990, when the company - founded by Tony Larking - was largely involved in the restoration and reselling of vintage equipment such as Neve and Trident recording consoles. The first TL Audio products were original Neve EQ modules, which were taken principally from broadcast consoles and repackaged to make them suitable for music production studios. A little later, Tony Larking joined forces with David Kempson, a leading designer at Neve for nine years.
By 1993 the demand for used valve outboard equipment had become very strong but most models such as the original Pultec and Fairchild valve devices were already extremely rare and expensive. There appeared an obvious gap in the market for brand new affordable valve products and the result was TL Audio's first valve product - the EQ-1 Dual Valve Equalizer. This product revolutionized the studio market by offering reliable, flexible, great sounding valve processing that was within the budget of most studios. The EQ-1 quickly attracted the interest of mainstream engineer/producers, with the first two production models going to Roy Thomas Baker (who had produced many of Queen and Foreigner's early recordings) and Chris Porter (who was working with George Michael and Take That).
The EQ-1 was the first of what became known as the 'Classic' range, and was followed by what has become possibly TL Audio's best known product - the C-1 Dual Valve Compressor, which shot to stardom as Chris Fogel's mixdown compressor on Alanis Morissette's multi-million selling Jagged Little Pill album.
Today, TL Audio has become one of the most respected names currently manufacturing Pro Audio equipment. According to designer David Kempson, "Our hybrid design approach was not chosen to cut costs: we created it because we genuinely believe it is a better way of producing valve processors. It makes them consistent, reliable, quiet, and - best of all - it means that by gearing ourselves up for large-scale production we can make the products affordable as well. Every studio deserves to benefit from the advantages of valve signal processing - with our products, we make that possible."
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C-1 2-Channel Valve Tube Compressor