Known for its landmark compression, lack of distortion and a signature sound all its own, the dbx 160 compressor/limiter has been an essential element in the studio since its birth in 1971. By teaming with dbx to authentically recreate the compressor in plug-in form, Waves Audio has now made this classic piece of studio gear available to producers and engineers all over the world.
"The original dbx 160 almost sounded as though it had a high-pass sidechain filter in it, so when you added it to drums, the kick and snare did not seem to drive it," producer/engineer Val Garay (Don Henley/Elton John) says. "Also, since it was an early solid-state device, there was very little distortion if any."
Building off the original 160, the design team behind the new plug-in meticulously worked to accurately recreate dbx's plans, while also working in elements of today's technology. With exclusive features not found in the original schematics, including noise controls and a stereo element, Waves has once again given a classic piece of gear new life in the modern era of the studio.
"My first impression of the Waves dbx 160 limiter was astonishment," states producer/engineer Eddie Kramer (Led Zeppelin/Jimi Hendrix). "Put it up on a bass guitar, changed the patch, went to the original, pulled the patch... I couldn't tell the difference when we put it into the mix."
Although the dbx 160 sounds great on everything, when you achieve the right attack/release on kick, snare and bass guitars, the results are unbelievable. The original compressor/limiter is one of the best on bass/drums and, thanks to Waves, you can now have this amazing dbx replica in your mobile rig or home studio.
Want to hear more from Eddie Kramer about his use of the new compressor/limiter plug-in? Check out the demo video below and find out more over on our Waves dbx 160 plug-in page: