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June 2017 Giveaway

Shadow Hills Industries Dual Vandergraph Stereo Compressor Reviews

4.5 stars based on 5 customer reviews
Questions about the Shadow Hills Industries Dual Vandergraph Stereo Compressor?

Questions about the Shadow Hills Industries Dual Vandergraph Stereo Compressor?

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Sweetwater Advice

  • Kris Eckman

    The Shadow Hills Industries Dual Vandergraph gives me all the highlights of their Mastering Compressor, but at a price that's better for my home-studio budget. I love the range of compression I can get out of this processor. I can smooth out stems, crush drums, or level off my entire mix as needed. From metal to psychedelic, every mix I produce benefits from the punch and presence of my Dual Vandergraph.

  • from April 28, 2017

    Excellent Sounding, BUT

    Amazing sounding compressor, although using as a drum buss compressor it buried the snare a little to my taste. The reason for a mid level rating is for the customer service part of Shadow Hills. My Vandergraph's compression stopped working between the 30-60 day point. Was told it would take at least 4 weeks to get a new one. I really like the compressor, but to me that is way too long to be without. I exchanged it for another comparable brand.

  • from New York, New York July 18, 2015Music Background:
    professional musician, producer & engineer

    One of The Best Compressors Period!

    If you are looking for a compressor in the $1,500-$3,000, you should seriously consider the Dual Vandergraph, 500 series or otherwise. It is simply amazing. I wanted a stereo buss compressor and originally considered the SSL 500 series. If you were thinking the same, save your money and get the Vandergraph. If you are looking to spend less than the purchase price of the DV, just save those pennies to get it. You will be very, very happy you did.

    Not only does it sound great, it is surprisingly versatile. Don't be fooled by the preset ratios. I have not found this limiting at all. I can be as transparent or as heavy-handed as I want. The sidechain filters switch makes a big difference. Even without engaging any compression, the DV automatically adds a highly desirable girth and larger-than-life sound to the signal. The controls are simply for fine-tuning that added richness and tightening the dynamics. However, unlike lesser compressors, the dynamic control does NOT make the signal smaller sounding.

    I've had the Vandergraph for only a couple of months and have used it as a master buss and drum buss compressor on some metal tracks. However, my studio partner does mainly hip-hop and R&B and it sounds great there too. I have to mix a jazz project that contains drums, electric bass, piano, a 3-piece horn section, guitar and vocals. I have no doubt that the DV will shine on that project too.

    The only negative is that if you don't have a lunchbox, you'll have to buy one to add the DV to your studio toolbox. Well worth it though. Nothing but praise for this piece. I will be buried with my '75 Les Paul and my Vandergraph!

  • from New york April 4, 2014

    Wow.. Is an understatement.

    This has to be the most amazing compressor on earth.. It will light up you tracks.

  • from CT March 1, 2013

    Iron, Iron, Iron

    So let's be honest, who HASN'T lusted after a $7,000 Shadow Hills Mastering Comp? I know I have, and that's why my eye turned to the dual vandy, which is basically with very few details withheld, the VCA section of the SHMC. I plugged it into my rack with high hopes and it still and it kicked my @$$.

    The sound? Iron, iron, iron... just a weighty, dense, confident, beautiful gut-punch. The options are fairly limited compared ot others (i.e. 4 selectable ratios and no attack/release fine-tuning), but what's there you can tell was very carefully selected and implemented - frankly, for someone like myself who is what I'll call a passionate hobbyist but not a professional who has a degree in audio production, I feel like the limited options are probably a good thing, as I know this is going to sound great wherever I set it - less opportunity for me to screw it up! The 1.25:1 and 2:1 are great on the mix bus and drum bus, and this thing does great with tracking, as well. Awesome purchase, I almost thing it's undervalued for the sounds you'll get, this thing is well worth the price tag!

    The SH branding of invoking golden-age military technology/layout and feel is just plain COOL, too. If you haven't seen their website, check it out... gloriously archane. To get to a product page you have to look up a code in the manual and type it into the enigma machine... WTF!?!?!? LOVE IT!

  • from May 17, 2012Music Background:
    Producer / Engineer / Musician

    Spank Me with VCA's!

    I'll try to do this gently with descriptions that are not commonly used.
    You know how murky and flat some compressors get ? This is not that.
    The Dual Vandy is a sure thing if you want quick go to usable compression without too much guess work and the Jensen / Shadow Hills transformer combination delivers an angst that you won't find in another 3 lettered manufacturer. Don't get me wrong I like those other guys too but this DOES sound different and even in bypass it does something to the mind!
    I've used this on drums, guitars, vocals and program stereo bus and all of the pre chosen ratios and release times are balanced nicely. With the side chain filter I'm able to get tailored responses from the detector to find something usable pretty quick. That being said I did only give a 4.5 due to one drawback for me. It has stepped potentiometers which is cool for recall and confidence but for me I find on occasion the need to go right in the middle of the current and last click of the dial. An easy work around is to back off the input via the fader just a hair and call it macaroni !
    To sum it up I love this compressor and it keeps impressing me all the time. I will continue to buy Shadow Hills gear based on quality/ usability and vision laid out by Mr Reardon with whom I have an audio engineers man crush due to his legacy being made at Shadow Hills Industries.

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