JoeMeek Stereo Compressor rev 1.07 no output gain

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Home Forums Ask Ted JoeMeek Stereo Compressor rev 1.07 no output gain

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  • #15351

    Hi Ted!

    Thank you for continuing to monitor this board, and for helping us figure out what we have!

    I bought my SC2 from a dealer when they first hit ‘the States’: as soon as heard about them. My unit is Serial # C10-1775. The back panel says it’s rev. 1.07, but there is no make up gain knob. It sounds great, always has! I would love to get some background on this unit. Is it a 1.05 with a transition nameplate? Is it a 1.07 without makeup gain?

    I am including photos of the Front panel, Back panel, and ‘under the hood’. This is the first time I have unscrewed the 10 screws to take off the top panel. I’m an audio engineer but not an EE. I’ve used this hundreds of times, and everybody loves it. In the inside photo you can see there is a bit of ‘sponge’ under each of the circuit boards. The faceplate is beveled and beautifully green.

    I would be happy to hear any information you can provide about this unit.

    Thank you!


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    Ted Fletcher

    Hi Jim, that SC2 is one of the second batch sold in the US. The circuitry is the same as the V1.05 but after a revised layout of the main PC board.

    The lovely bevelled front panel was finished by a local auto restore shop…. lots of coats of paint!

    All these early versions were supplied without make-up gain controls.

    The total number of that version must have been around 60 units, I then found the front panels much too expensive so we went to a more standard panel, and at the same time added make-up gain controls on the rear.

    That model was followed by the SC2.2 where the main compression circuitry was retained, but with a lot more control sophistication…. and it was not quite as easy to use as the early ones! 😮

    I’m sure that most of those early compressors are still in use, there are lots here in the UK.


    Thank you for the info, Ted! It’s a great sounding unit!

    I remember reading somewhere that Mark Knoffler had one in his rack as the last thing in his signal chain, and the meter was usually just pinned to the right! Helped create that amazing tone he gets.

    Ted Fletcher

    Mark Knopfler’s guitar sound is a lot more complicated than that….. Mark has always been a perfectionist and spends a huge amount of time choosing the right amplifier, microphone and acoustic environment as well as the right guitar. The recorded sound is again a combination of engineering skills of Chuck Ainlay amongst others (including my own son Guy), and some very carefully set-up equipment. Yes, it’s true Chuck uses my compressors but I’m not keen on the idea of ‘name dropping’ as a way of adding credence to the quality of equipment.

    But I’m delighted that over time, the old SC2 has become a bit of a legend, as have the American compressors the LA2A, the 1176 and even the old Altec 436 that I used to use in my KPM studio in Denmark Street because I couldn’t afford anything better!

    Now here’s a secret…. I admit that when I was testing the original SC2 back in 1988 (I still have that one by the way), I used the attack and release times of the Altec as a model! It doesn’t sound quite the same as the Altec owing to the different ‘shape’ of both the attack and the release characteristics…… I ended up preferring my own and getting rid of the Altec! :)

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