As one of the most legendary pieces of recording equipment in our time, the Urei 1176 compressor has influenced more than its fair share of gear makers. Since the compressor's creation in 1966, there has been no more famous offspring than that of the Origin Effects Cali76.
By minimizing the makeup of a studio-grade compressor into a pedal-size stompbox, the designers at Origin Effects have given the sonic gift of effortless compression to live and studio players everywhere. With 100% Class-A discrete signal path, extremely quick FET response and attack/release controls, the Cali76 follows the topology of the original with extreme detail.
While this pedal has been a favorite among studio musicians since the beginning, there is one question that often lingers about the effect itself. With three different options of Origin Effects Cali76, what are the differences between these amazing sounding pedals? Let's break it down.
Origin Effects Cali76-STD: While many might think that the original Cali76 pales in comparison to the pedals that follow it, the Standard version of this stompbox is an essential pickup for anyone looking to add compression to their live rig. Simply by using the Attack, Release and Ratio knobs, a player can dial in a wide range of compression with priceless transparency and low noise. The Cali76-STD offers a simple plug-in and play set-up that will make it easy for newcomers to create great compression.
Origin Effects Cali76-TX: Building on the basic sound of the Cali76-STD, the Cali76-TX ultimately uses a different transformer than the original. Origin Effects utilizes an iron-core output transformer, which adds rich saturation when the pedal is pushed into high-gain mode via a switch. While it will change your guitar's original tone, the saturation, gain and compression work well together, as the pedal never pushes your sound too far out there.
Another key difference between the Cali76-STD and the Cali76-TX is a bevy of connectivity options. The rear of the Cali76-TX expands a player's option by adding a Line/DI output, a TRS output and a -28dB pad switch that enables control over dropping the output level. This offering of extra types of outputs allows a wider range of use when it comes to using the Cali76-TX in the studio setting.
Origin Effects Cali76-TX-L: The Cali76-TX-L is the same pedal as the Cali76-TX, but adds a Lundahl transformer into the makeup of the stompbox. The difference between the iron-core transformer created in-house at Origin Effects and the Lundahl transformer is that you are getting an absolutely transparent sound. No saturation! If you're looking to predominantly use your compression pedal in the studio setting, the Cali76-TX-L is the right pedal to choose.
While the names are all similar and each of the pedals are capable of amazing compression, each model differs from the others in the Origin Effects line. Choosing the perfect pedal for you comes down to knowing what you need to use the pedal for. Live musicians will love the easy-to-use compression of the original and the slightly dirtier sound of the Cali76-TX. Meanwhile, studio players will appreciate the transparent sound and direct inputs of the Cali76-TX-L.