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  • SOC-1.1 
stereo optical compressor

Buzz Audio SOC1.1

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Product Description


stereo optical compressor

design features

Our original stereo optical compressor brings a vintage technique into the modern studio for tracking, mixing and even mastering. 

vintage heritage

The use of Light Dependant Resistors (LDR) as the control element of an audio compressor was pioneered in the 1960's and we are all aware of the value placed on those famous vintage LA2A and LA3A units. The SOC-1.1 was designed not to copy, but to take that signature sound and improve on it by offering the user more control. The SOC-1.1 puts you in command of the dynamics rather than dealing with preset parameters.

control genius

The attack and release parameters of the SOC-1.1 can be set much faster than vintage opto compressors and there are 3 attack settings and 6 release setting including really useful and intelligent auto modes. The large knobs allow for easy recall of settings in mastering applications.

design brilliance

The design of the SOC-1.1 lead to the development of our differential drive side chain circuit which is unique to Buzz Audio and is used in all our optical compressors. This circuit processes the negative and positive portions of the audio wavefrom separately (attack and release parameters) and along with the "soft knee" characteristic creates a very smooth coherent compression action.

applications galore

The SOC-1.1 is perfect for recording vocals, acoustic instruments and sounds really special on bass instruments. Our clever design destroys the myth that optical compressors are "too slow" for the mix buss and the SOC will provide instant musical "glue" in this application - never digging holes in your mix. 

controls and functions

DRIVE - turning it clock wise increases compression, which is way more sensible than counter clock wise!
OUTPUT dB - variable pot that adds up to 15dB gain at the output to correct for lost level.
ATTACK - toggle switch with FAST (1mS) or SLOW (50mS) selection and our excellent AUTO mode.
RATIO - rotary switch with 4 settings for depth of compression, 2:1, 5:1, 10:1, 20:1.
RELEASE - rotary switch selects recovery time of 100mS, 200mS, 400mS, 800mS, 1600mS and a superb AUTO mode.
METER - monitor input or output level or amount of compression on the VU meter.
BYPASS - hard wire unit bypass to compare compressed and uncompressed signals.
There is also a handy power ON/OFF switch and a channel A/B LINK switch which soft links the sidechain circuit which is useful when the SOC-1.1 is used on stereo mixes.



user comments

Damian Lunson

I just picked up one of your SOC-1.1's and I have to say...I'm floored buddy! This compressor is fantastic. I have only used it once on a male vocal (very low and full timbre) with an acoustic guitar and the amount off depth and all-round pleasing tone it added to the signal was amazing! I sold my LA-2A a little while back to fund my console purchase and while this dude doesn't sport the tubes, it retains everything I miss about my LA-2A. A really bad pun here but I know what the "buzz" is all about now. Wonderful gear. I'll be aiming for some more of your gear shortly. Wicked! 
[Media in Motion Studios, August 2014.]



Max Input/Output Level; +23.5dBu (measured with 2k ohm load and 0dB output gain makeup)
Frequency Response; 4Hz to 250kHz (-3dB points with no gain reduction)
Slew Rate; 20V/uS
Harmonic Distortion; less than 0.008% (measured 100Hz to 10kHz with no gain reduction)
Harmonic Distortion; less than 0.03% (measured 100Hz to 10kHz with 20dB gain reduction, Atk-AUTO, Rel-16)
Residual Output Noise; typically -90dBu, -100dBu A wtg (0dB output gain makeup, 150R source impedance)
Channel to Channel Crosstalk; below noise
Standard Operating Level; +4dBu = 0 VU meter display
Size; 2 Unit 19" rack mount, (482Wx88Hx250D)
Power requirements; 230V/115V selectable on rear, IEC detachable power cable
Specifications are typical of a production unit and are subject to change without notice. 0dBu reference = 0.775 volts RMS.


Warranty Information

standard product warranty

Buzz Audio guarantees the Product to be free of defective materials and/or workmanship for a period of 1 year (12 months) from the date of sale, and will replace defective parts and repair malfunctioning Products under this warranty when the defect occurs under normal installation and use - provided the unit is returned to our factory (or duly authorised service centre) via prepaid transportation with a copy of the proof of purchase, ie, sales receipt. This warranty provides that examination of the returned Product must indicate, in our judgement, a manufacturing defect. This warranty does not extend to any Product that has been subjected to misuse, neglect, accident, improper installation, or where the date code has been removed or defaced. The standard warranty is not transferable to a new owner should the Product change hands during the 1 year period.

product warranty extension

The Standard Product Warranty may be extended to a period of 2 years (24 months) from date of sale provided the Product is registered with us within 4 weeks (28 days) from the purchase date. The extended warranty is transferable to a new owner should the product change hands within the 2 year period.

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