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Empirical Labs EL8X-S Distressor Stereo Pair | Compressor with Brit Mod & Image Link

Empirical Labs EL8X-S Distressor Stereo Pair | Compressor with Brit Mod & Image Link

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Retail Price: $3,899.00
Our Price: $3,499.00

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  • Stereo pair of distressors with British mod & image link
  • Three audio modes
  • Tube-like sound in clean and Dist 2 Mode
  • 3rd Harmonic "tape" sound in Dist 3 Mode
  • British mode similar to 1176 style compression
  • 1 RU metal chassis each

  • Unlike most analog compressor/limiters the Distressor is a digitally controlled audio device and actually incorporates several products into one by utilizing digital controls to switch totally different circuits in and out. Years of beta testing and redesign went into the Distressor as will be the case with all Empirical Labs products.

    Besides offering a wide range of control and unique features, the Distressor offers a warm, vintage sound by using a custom designed gain control circuit. This "warmth" or vintage sound has become an important issue in the last 15 years, as the super clear and linear digital technology does very little (or nothing) to soften "harsh" sounds nor emphasize the bass frequencies in music sources. Older analog tape, vinyl records and tube equipment on the other hand, could not be prevented from coloring the sound, often to the frustration of recording engineers. However, many people have now realized that this coloring can be extremely pleasant and "musical".The current digital technology is often referred to as "cold" and "brittle" among other terms, although we prefer the term "unforgiving" to describe the negative side of the "linearity". The Distressor offers several modes that color the signal, even without compression (or gain control). These extended modes were designed to allow emulation of some very old and some very expensive vintage gain control units (compressors & limiters) and deliver a classic "knee" sound all its own.

    • Freq. response - 2 Hz to 160 kHz in clean mode (+0, -3 dB). Response is shaped in distortion modes (Dist 2, Dist 3).
    • Dynamic range 110 dB max. Greater than 100 dB signal to noise in distort 3 mode. Distortion ranges between .02% and 20% depending on distortion mode and release times set on front panel.
    • DC coupled output - High quality input caps.
    • Input impedance - 20K Ohms, Output impedance - < 75 ohms
    • Time constants - Attack range 50uS - 50mS. Release range .05 sec to 3.5 seconds, normal modes and up to 20 seconds in 10:1 opto mode. Time constants are dependent on ratio.

    For more information on this or any Empirical Labs product visit