Strymon Compadre First Thoughts

Just rolled into the shop, an unsung effect gets a new coat of paint.

The Strymon Compadre is a compression and boost combo pedal made to complement any setup and take a place as an "Always On" companion.  

The team at Strymon, a group responsible for world-renowned pedals, have submitted another entry to their distinguished line. Designed to fit easily into any rig, on any pedalboard, and in any performance, the Compadre rolls out the red carpet for a wide spectrum of sound. 

Starting as a quest to understand the workings of the most refined compressors ever created, the Compadre came to form. The project was greatly influenced by classic studio compressors and the subtle voicings they were known for as vintage tones became an inspiration in crafting a unique compression experience.

The Compadre features two distinct compression types. Studio, the first compression voice, is a transparent compression to smooth out a rough signal and add ever-important sustain. Squeeze, the second, takes a bigger leap into twang-territory to invoke memories of vintage compression effects and the jangly voices they create. Highly adjustable and interactive, the compression effects are quick and responsive with controls to dial in dry signal, adjust levels, and engage the effect to one's liking. 

A fitting counterpart to compression, the Compadre also hosts a deeply customizable boost effect. Available in tandem with compression or independently, the boost side of the Compadre has an expressive voice that can give a clean kick to the signal or take the wheel to border on a clipping overdrive. Building a unique boost is easy as the Compadre features a three-position EQ switch to engage frequencies high and low. The boost function can be pushed further with the Dirty side of the toggle to get into a louder boost level, pushing a teetering amp over the edge.

Each effect on the Compadre complements the other greatly. Smoothly accentuating precision and articulation while providing an always-needed lift, the Compadre sculpts the contours of a signal to round out any tone.   It also gives you options, with the ability to save different set-ups for easy recall depending on the situation.

The Compadre is the kind of pedal that is always there for you. Hosting two of the more subtle effects, it is the perfect all-in-one enhancer, giving the ability to fine-tune your rig and helping to make it, “its best self.” The right compressor and boost can make all the difference and Strymon Effects have kept that in mind. Think of it as a tonal self-help book, because as the name suggests, the Compadre is a ride or die kind of friend.

Check out our take on the Strymon Iridium Release & Strymon Night Sky Review.