dbx 160AD Compressor

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Product Code: 9999-02445
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dbx 160AD Compressor

The dbx 160AD Compressor is a legendary dbx 160 family of compressor/limiters. The same classic sound, easy set-up and no compromise metering is now married to an improved signal path and stronger chassis design. The result is industry standard compressor/limiter which is digital-ready and road tough.

The dbx 160AD Compressor/Limiter and the 160 Series has been the world's most popular line of audio compressors, since the original dbx 160 was introduced in the mid 1970's. After the classic 160 (which is still used daily in many world class studios), came the dbx 165, the dbx 160X and the dbx 160XT. The dbx 160X/XT were the models that truly became the industry standard. Solid construction, fool proof operation, great sound, at-a-glance metering and a bulletproof output stage all contributed to its popularity with musicians, recording studios, consultants and installers, and broadcast media production people alike.

Featuring switch-selectable OverEasy and Hard Knee compression curves along with extremely wide-ranging threshold, ratio and output controls, the dbx 160AD is up to any task. True RMS level detection provides the most natural-sounding dynamics processing available, from subtle compression to "brick wall" peak limiting. Choose low ratios and OverEasy compression to transparently smooth out fluctuating vocal and instrumental levels. Or use the 160AD's Hard Knee compression and high ratios (up to and beyond :1 and over 60dB gain reduction) for bombproof protection against overload distortion in digital recording, P.A. systems and broadcast signals. The 160AD is fully compatible with +4/-10dB and balanced/ unbalanced systems, and its electronically balanced output stage is an outstanding line driver for long cable runs (an output transformer is optional). The 19-segment, switchable input/ output LED metering can be easily calibrated to any operating level. 12-segment gain reduction LEDs provide precise analysis at a glance.

The dbx 160AD's unique "INFINITY +" inverse-compression mode actually decreases the audio output level below unity gain when the input exceeds threshold, a real lifesaver for correcting overbearing vocal choruses and controlling runaway house mix levels. A detector input can be used with an equalizer for de-essing sibilant vocals and selectively smoothing out boomy notes on acoustic guitar and bass. And two dbx 160ADs can be stereo-coupled to process an entire mix or instruments mic'd in stereo, without shifting the left/right image. Its musical sound, easy operation and unequaled versatility made the original dbx 160 a world standard. The dbx 160AD follows that tradition, while meeting the challenges of a digital world.ent in the mix, or overall characteristics of 4 independent signals or control the gain leveling on a couple of stereo pairs, the dbx 160AD is for you.

dbx 160AD Compressor Features

  • OverEasy or classic hard knee compression with dbx's ultra-musical program dependent attack and release times
  • Compression ratio variable from 1:1 through infinity :1 to negative compression
  • Precision dual RMS LED display monitors input or output and gain reduction over a wide range and calibrates for different operating levels
  • Over 60dB of gain reduction available
  • Exclusive Infinity+ compression allows negative compression
  • Independent balanced and unbalanced outputs can drive 600 loads to +24dBm simultaneously. New floating balanced output stage drives any load
  • Optional output transformer capable
  • Strappable with another dbx 160AD for true RMS stereo summing operation

dbx 160AD Compressor Specifications

  • Input Connectors: 1/4" TRS and XLR, Floating Balanced; XLR: Pin 2 hot Phone: Tip Hot
  • Input Impedance: 40k
  • Max Input: +24dBu, Balanced or Unabalanced (Absolute)
  • CMRR: >45dB (any Frequency)
  • Detector Input: Connector: 14" TRS phone, Floating Balanced
  • Detector Input Impedance: >200k
  • Detector Input Max Level: +28dBu, Balanced or Unbalanced
  • Output Connectors: 1/4" TRS phone, Unbalanced; XLR, floating balanced; pin 2 hot
  • Output Impedance: Balanced 200 ohm, unbalanced 100 ohm
  • Max Output: (Balanced): +24dBm; <0.3% THD; (Unbalanced): +20dBm; <0.3% THD
  • Noise: <-90dBu, Unweighted (20Hz - 20kHz)
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz -20kHz, +0, -0.5dB; +0, -3dB 0.5Hz and 90kHz.
  • THD: <0.2%, Typical, any amount of compression up to 40dB @ 1kHz
  • Compressor Threshold Range: -40dBu to +20dBu
  • Compressor Threshold Characteristic: OverEasy® or hard knee
  • Compressor Ratio: Variable 1:1 to :1 thru to -1:1; >60dB maximum compression
  • Compressor Attack Time: Program dependent; typically 15ms for 10dB, 5ms for 20dB, 3ms for 30dB
  • Compressor Release Time: Program Dependent; Typically 8ms for 1dB, 80ms for 10dB, 400ms for 50dB; 125dB/sec rate
  • Dynamic Range: >113dB
  • Gain Adjustment Range: Variable from -20dB to +20dB
  • Stereo Coupling: True RMS Power summing
  • Summing: 1/4" TRS phone jack
  • Operating Voltage: DO: 90-130VAC, 50/60Hz; EU: 200-250VAC, 50/60Hz
  • Power Connector: IEC receptacle
  • Dimensions: 1.75" x 19" x 6.5" (4.45cm x 48.2cm x 16.51cm)
  • Net Weight: 4.452 lbs (1.99 kg)
  • Shipping Weight: 6.62 lbs (2.99 kg)

dbx 160AD Compressor Includes

  • dbx 160AD Compressor
  • AC Power Cord
  • Printed Operation Manual
  • Warranty Registration Card

dbx 160AD Compressor Downloads

What We Think

"The dbx 160AD Compressor/Limiter is a wonderfully smooth and versatile compressor. It's perfect for both stage and studio. It's a great tool for gigging bass players looking to have control over their sound on-stage - and FOH engineers are often grateful because they get a nice and even signal from the stage requiring less work to get a good sound. In the studio, it's a mainstay on bass, but also for snare drums where it's ability to shape the sound into something really punchy and tight epitomizes the dbx sound. The dbx 160A is a great way to add some world-class studio-standard compression to your studio without breaking the bank.",

- Front End Audio

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  • 5
    Awesome Compressor

    Posted by Devin Patrick on Mar 4th 2009

    Over the years, I have owned and used several compressors. But the DBX160 is by far one of the most amazing pieces I have come across from using it in a pro studio environment or tracking vocals and synths at my home studio it has proven to live up to its name. The 160 was referred to me by a friend and owner of the Jam Room Recording Studio so I thought I would check it out and actually bought one, needless to say I instantly noticed the changes dramatically. Knobs are colored and easy to use. Lights show meter level as well as gain reduction at the same time. This is an awesome compressor. I defiantly recommend this to anyone, amateurs and pros alike. It is worth the buy.