It’s strange how rumours start and grow with time!
The VC3 went through a few variations over the years we produced it. The early ones had a conventional mic amp very similar to the one used in all the professional consoles of the time, followed by the optical compressor that I designed for the original VC1 ‘Brick’ and then the enhancer which was again my design. These were VC3, VC3 V2 (1998) and the VC3 V3 (1999). The V2 and V3 were minor changes to the enhancer design.
Later we dropped the enhancer and changed the design to incorporate an EQ as many customers asked for it. At about the same time we started to use a manufacturing sub-contractor in Kelso, and this is where the ‘Neve’ connection came from, but the design and quality were always the same. At about the same time we introduced a version with gold lettering, just for a short time.
The VC3Q was the name of the version with EQ.
The last ones we made used a slightly different mic amp design and were called the VC3QCS (2000) and MQ3CS (2001).
There were no changes at all to the compressor design, they were all the same.
I hope that sheds some light!