Buzz Audio DBC-20 Diode Bridge Compressor
The Buzz Audio DBC-20 Diode Bridge Compressor was designed by Tim Farrant. The DBC-20 is a new take on a vintage technique utilizing a gain reduction element of silicon diodes in a transformer coupled bridge arrangement. This element produces a desirable compression character that can best be described as tight and colourful. The DBC-20 also incorporates a self-adjusting ratio whereby the compression ratio is automatically increased with deepening gain reduction. This feature allows for the control of very dynamic signals (such as vocals) in a seamless fashion.
The DBC-20 audio path uses the Buzz Audio proprietary Class A discrete amplifier design in a balanced configuration from input to output. Operation of the compressor is easy with six switched attack and release times, a big knob for the amount of compression and an output gain control. The compressor can be switched to a soft mode whereby dynamic peaks are partially retained. Another switch introduces a high pass filter to the side chain to lower compression sensitivity at low frequencies. Each channel has a bypass switch and the side chain of the two channels can be linked for stereo operation.
Gain reduction is displayed on a fast response LED bar graph meters that indicates true peak reduction levels. The DBC-20 is housed in a sturdy one unit rack mount enclosure and is built entirely by hands in using through hole serviceable components.