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Bogner Lyndhurst Compressor Review

I know many have been waiting for this review and I've spent a lot of time with this one. It is definitely unique and the way you go about dialing it in is different than other compressors.

Upon opening the box you quickly notice how attractive the pedal is and well built it appears to be. It feels like a brick. Very solid. Nice aluminum style wrap with Bogner branding on top and bottom. Dials are solid and have a very solid rotation feel. It is not small, but not as tall as the Cali for example. It is wider than the Cali and has side jacks so actually takes up more pedal board space.

Here's a picture of the Lyndhurst beside the Cali. The picture is purposefully dark so you can see the cool white LED which wraps a "B" logo. Nice touch. However, it is pretty subdued and not highly noticeable in brighter light.

The claim to fame of this compressor is the VCA circuit with Rupert Neve Designs audio transformer. From the Bogner website, the Neve transformer adds a "3D Sonic Image quality rich in harmonics with added vintage warms just like we love them from the classic recording." It is capable of adding warmth. Don't know about the 3D sonic image quality.

Level knob controls the overall output volume and it is a pretty wide range of output. Plenty of boost.

The Input/Comp knob controls the amount of gain and compression of the preamp that feeds the actual compressor. It is very sensitive. Starts feeling squashy at 9:00 already with active basses or 10:00 or so with passive. This knob reacted much better to my Fender Strat. I pretty much kept the knob around 8:00. Turned too high and you'll clip your amp. You will also absolutely squash your signal and remove any hint of dynamics.

The Attack circuit is unique with the switch flipping between and "auto" mode and manual where you use the dial to tweak your desired amount of attack. I was surprised that the auto setting worked just fine and seemed to adapt to how hard or soft I was playing. Turning the dial all the way clockwise is a slower attack, meaning letting more of your initial attack (transient) through. The opposite is true all the way counterclockwise. I much preferred the knob at noon or more clockwise. Otherwise it just contributed to the overall squashed feeling. The dial does not work in auto mode.

Ratio controls the amount of gain reduction applied in relation to the input signal. The manual says 1:1 is in fact no compression.

The EQ switch does add noticeable effect for bass but adds more noise to the signal. Center "F" position is flat, "S" is for sparkle, and "C" is for chime. Sparkle adds the most noise to the signal. Chime and Sparkle add varying degrees of treble presence. Flat and Chime were my preferred settings. Chime is nice for adding a little more definition to fingerstyle playing. There is a little more "presence" or "sparkle" with switch options. Might be for you, might not. No position adds more lows.

The Lyndhurst is definitely not the quietest of compressors. There is always noticeable white noise. The higher you turn the Input/Comp knob, the more noise is added. I couldn't ever really dial out the pumping either. It was quite pronounced at all but the lowest settings of the Input/Comp knob.

Having the knob at anything higher than 8:00 and the pumping was quite obvious. I contacted Bogner and a Jorg (possibly Jorg Dorschner?) responded saying, "The Lyndhurst has a very high impedance 5Meg input, this has a higher floor noise but it has a certain feel which otherwise is lost, this was by design choice. The bigger contributor is probably the make up gain stage, we could reduce the floor noise there but then at the upper third of the compression ratio control won't be enough gain to bring the level up."

If you can cope with the noise floor, the Lyndhurst really sounds great and adds some bigness to your tone.

You can easily make the pedal squash your signal if you want to. It has quite a bit of range from a little compression to a lot. At lower settings (Input/Comp between 7:00 and 10:00 the pedal does add quite a bit of fatness and I found it sounding really very good. There might be a bit of harmonic content coming through. Don't think distortion of OD though (unless you are cranking the Input/Comp), just subtle color.

At higher Input/Comp dial settings your tone is very evened out. There is no issue with lack of headroom.

I suspect the Lyndhurst is fantastic for guitarists. The tone I was able to achieve on the E - G strings was quite pleasing. It tightens the B string more than it fattens it.

Foot switch has a great feel to it. It isn't totally clickless but has an authoritative feel with you depress it. 9 volt jack is on the right.

Retail price: $329


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