(click thumbnail)Price: $329 Info: www.bbesound.com
The BBE MaxCom is a dual-channel compressor and limiter with gate. The bright red, single-rackspace processor includes two independent full-featured compressor/limiters. Each channel has independent controls for threshold (-40dBu - +20dBu), compression ratio (1:1-11:1), attack time (0.1 – 200 msec) and release time. The box's "linking" function provides for the phase-coherent tracking of stereo signals and the adjustment from the first channel's controls. Each channel has dual bargraph meters that indicate input level and gain reduction. Audio input and output is available via balanced XLR connectors or unbalanced 1/4-input connectors.
The MaxCom is the first signal processor of its kind to feature an onboard BBE Sonic Maximizer which has the ability to bring crystalline clarity to the source material as well as revealing rich harmonic subtleties. The MaxCom employs BBE's latest High Definition Sound technology, in the very same 4th Generation BBE Professional chipset that powers the 482i and 882i Sonic Maximizers.
I found the MaxCom to be quick to set up and easy to use. The unit is an excellent general purpose compressor and does a fine job of fulfilling compression needs in most situations. I put the box to work in some more critical situations and in most cases it worked really well. I did find it slightly lacking in the case of stereo buss and lead vocal compression, but in every other instance it excelled. I found the metering on the MaxCom to be a bit awkward at first but a little time with the box solved this problem. The MaxCom's intuitive design makes it easy to operate, and with its meticulous engineering and robust construction, it should provide years of reliable service.