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The Smart Research C1LA is a two channel Compressor/Limiter, released to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the original C1 Stereo/Dual Mono unit. It is a versatile unit, housed in a two-module wide 500-series plug-in format, with three main modes of operation offering a range of possibilities. It can be used for all stereo or single channel signal applications: as a main mix bus compressor; for submixes; or for tracking either mono or stereo sources.
For 25 years Smart Research compressors have been used across many mixes: with artists as diverse as the Rolling Stones to the Three Tenors. The C1LA shares this history by including the same electronics and settings as the original C1, but with several new features.
A Tri-Mode C1
Each channel can either be used independently, or in Stereo mode both are summed into the sidechain to eliminate any image shift, as in the C1. The C1LA also has the ability to DC-Link the sidechain signals in Stereo mode, allowing for more movement, while still preserving the stereo image. And for those who prefer to compress both sides of a mix without linking: when operating independently both channelʼs controls are ganged.
Mix Glue ?
The essence of the C1LA sound is determined by its dynamic performance: the way it reacts around transients creating its signature. In many situations, best results can be from medium-slow attack; and mediumfast release settings passing transients present in a signal. The compression law and timing as the sidechain reacts and recovers adds ʻpunchʼ by shaping the transients, whilst also controlling overall levels. The ʻSOFTʼ mode in the C1LA also adds a new compression curve, acting not just at the threshold knee, but across a broad input range of about 15dB.
• 3 operating modes: Independent/ganged; Stereo linked/Sum; and Stereo Linked/DC
• Meter: Input, Output, (VU) and Gain Reduction (PPM) for L or R
• 3 sidechain filters : 65, 130, or 205Hz
• Automatic distortion null circuitry
• Normal and half-threshold ranges
• ʻSoftʼ compression curve reshapes a 15dB range
• Total of 12 Attack and 12 Release settings
• Total of 4 ʻAutoʼ settings
• Dual, balanced bantam jacks for external sidechain inputs
• All settings and circuitry from original C1 Dual/Stereo Compressor