Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor

Mastering-grade Compressor/Limiter with Optical and Discrete Compressor Sections, Sidechain Filter, and Transformer Switching Matrix
5/5 1 Write review Item ID: MasterComp
Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor image 1
Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor image 1
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Three Mastering-grade Compressors in One

Shadow Hills Industries has created Mastering Compressor so that you can get world-class dynamics control, with the sonic versatility to shape your sound via switchable output transformers. To start with, the Mastering Compressor sports stereo and dual-mono modes to fit any application, and separate Optical and Discrete compression sections for two-stage compression techniques. For your convenience, dual Hoyt meters provide signal status at a glance, and stepped attenuators make it easy to recall specific session settings. And once you've got your dynamics under control, choose from three different output transformers with their own individual sonic flavor. The Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor gives you more flexibility than you thought possible with a dynamics controller.

Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor at a Glance:
  • Dual compression sections for unprecedented dynamic control
  • Switchable output transformers for sonic variety
  • Premium signal path throughout
Dual compression sections for unprecedented dynamic control

The Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor controls your dynamics in two stages, an optical section and a discrete section. The optical section is mostly program dependent, with just Threshold and Gain settings, and features a two-stage release time reminiscent of a famous audio leveler from the late-'60s. Use the optical section to get your dynamic range under control, and to bring up overall level.

The discrete section utilizes a VCA design, and takes over where the optical section leaves off. With precise control over ratio, attack, and release, you'll be able to fine-tune the response of the Mastering Compressor to suit any program material, for any project.

Each section can be hardwire-bypassed individually, essentially giving you three exceptional methods of dynamics control in one single compressor.

Switchable output transformers for sonic variety

You have remarkable control over the tone and vibe of your music with the Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor, thanks to three switchable output transformers. Switching transformers provides a subtle but significant tonal shift, allowing you to choose the right vibe for your material. Choose from steel, nickel, or iron output transformers to get the iconic sound of different styles of analog consoles. The nickel transformer gives you a natural low end with smoothly enhanced high frequencies, outstanding for intimate acoustic recordings. The iron transformer has a natural high end with a slight boost around 110Hz, and has a Class-A output stage that only passes even-ordered harmonic distortion - very musical. The steel transformer sounds very open with a detailed and fast response, with a very subtle boost around 40Hz that helps provide rock-solid low frequencies.

Premium signal path throughout

From the custom-designed, gold-plated stepped attenuators for easy settings recall, to the custom output transformers, the Mastering Compressor's signal path is world-class all the way. And each compressor section can be hardwire-bypassed for exceptional sonic integrity when not in use.

Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor Features:
  • Choose from optical compression, VCA compression, or both in series, for unprecedented dynamic control with a mastering-grade signal path
  • Optical section provides smooth, program dependent leveling, just like a classic audio leveler from the late-'60s.
  • Discrete section gives you the fast, precise sound of a classic VCA compressor
  • Sidechain frequency filter prevents frequencies below 90Hz from triggering compression for tighter-sounding mixes
  • Three selectable output transformers each have their own distinctive sonic characteristics, for unparalleled tonal control
Experience an entirely new paradigm in dynamics control with the Shadow Hills Industries Mastering Compressor!

Additional Media

Mastering Compressor User Manual
Signal Processing Buying Guide

Tech Specs

Type Optical/VCA
Number of Channels 2
Controls Threshold, Gain, Ratio, Attack, Recovery
Ratio 1.2:1 to 20:1
Frequency Response 20Hz-20kHz
Inputs 2 x XLR
Outputs 2 x XLR
Rack Spaces 5U
Weight 43 lbs.
Manufacturer Part Number Mastering Comp

Customer Reviews

Based on 1 review
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Holy Smokes!

Peter Reardon is a genius! Not a term I throw around, this is a modern classic. You are watching the beginning of a legendary company take it's dark form in this brilliant company (Shadow Hills). I am a tube guy when it comes to outboard gear, to put it mildly, so needless to say I was hesitant to roll the dice on this one without hearing it first (other than youtube). I was using high end compressors before but this is a whole new level, this is a Game Changer. The interaction between the two compressors does so much for your audio! The fact that you have two separate gain stages on such a quiet unit gives you almost infinite options with this beast. I even tracked some traditionally difficult things on a good condenser mic and it allowed a whole new approach to getting on the microphone, if you get familiar with one of these you could kiss the mic and make it sound good, get as loud as you ever want and still have the low source material so clear when you get whisper quiet! Like I said this is a Game Changer, this is the LT of compressors kids. Shadow Hills is at the top of the Mountain with the biggest names in Pro Audio, & I am now in the know, Peter Reardon is a made man, rub the ashes brother.
Music background: Lifelong Musician and Recordist, aspiring Studio Recording Engineer
See also: Compressors, Shadow Hills Industries, Shadow Hills Industries Compressors / Limiters, Shadow Hills Industries Mastering