[review] DOD 280 Compressor (by LievenDV)

LievenDV is a reverb nut and enjoys discovering innovating technology. Besides that he's a singer/songwriter; solo and in a band.

This DOD Compressor 280 is the 2014 version of a classic pedal. As we're used of DOD, the pedal is designed a lot like all the other DOD pedals. This compressor is a nice sparkly orange with the typical big dials. A real no-frills quality build.

The 280 has a 9v input, 2 knobs, a led and a button. Everything a compressor should be and nothing more. These two dials are big offer a very precise control. The guide offered on the website won't give any specifics or hard combinations as the pedal is as straightforward as it looks.  The level knob determines your output level and adds quite enough to make it work as a clean boost is you like.

DOD 280 CompressorThe magic is of course in the compression control. From low to high settings, the compressor doesn't seem to change the character of your sound. I've experienced some "tonal changes" with other compressors but this one strikes me as very "neutral".

The typical tonal change could sometimes add a nice flavor but that is not the essence of a good compressor.

A good compressor "makes the quiet loud and loud quiet", it squashes the initial hard attack and it makes the dying note sustain longer.

At this essence, the DOD is a noble worker; you don't hear it's there but it does a good job. I found it quite pleasing how my playing was evened out without coloring my sound.

My rhythm work sounded more solid and consequent, always a welcome feature for rhythm players.

At low settings, you already get your highest peaks leveled out to take of the edge and you already sound a bit more consistent.

Don't forget; this compressor is very transparent so you won't notice it and you'll just hear solid playing. At a high compression level, you can try to put a lot of dynamic in your playing but it is all leveled to a same level of "power".

Very high levels bring a bit of noise but that's not too strange if you consider the function of a compressor.

This compressor is a valuable tool for acoustic guitarists too. Here again, nicely evened out sounds without coloring deliver solid sequences of notes or chords, ideal for singer songwriters or rhythm players.

I wouldn't call the 280 an effect but a "quality tool". Compressors make you lose some of the dynamics of course but that is part of the deal when you want to polish things up.

Great for:

  • transparent compressor that does not betray its presence in a chain

  • polishing the edges of your playing or putting down a solid layer of playing

Look elsewhere for:

  • that typical tonal color of compressors, this one is very neutral

  • tweakability and options

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