The new Carl Martin Honey Comp is an update on the Danish company’s popular (and now almost vintage) Compressor Limiter, with simplified controls and an added “Dry” knob that allows for parallel compression.
The circuit is very similar to the one of the original, although the Threshold and Response controls were removed and automated (like in some famous studio compressors), leaving us just with the Comp and Level knobs. What doesn’t change is the sonic clarity, the quietness and the headroom that made the Honey-Comp’s big brother so successful back in the day.
Speaking of high headroom, this is obtained through a proprietary DC/DC converter circuitry that enables the pedal to run internally at +-12V.
However, the Dry knob is the real game-changer for this circuit, allowing to reintegrate some of the performance’s original dynamics for a more natural feel even at heavy compression settings.
Have a listen to the Honey Comb in the videos below.
Carl Martin Honey Comp, Builder’s Notes
Carl started years back with the Compressor Limiter…that big black hand-made-in-Denmark compressor that brought studio comps to the pedal board. The word got out that it was just too big for modern pedal boards, so Carl redesigned that pedal into a much smaller format, preset (or fixed) the Threshold and Response leaving just two knobs for Comp and Level. The feedback we got was overwhelming…players were telling us the Comp Limiter had the same sonic clarity, the same headroom and the same quietness that the big studio comps had but was so quick and easy to use. Carl could have left it there, but that’s not Carl!
Welcome the Honey Comp, and it’s as sweet as …. well, you know …. honey. This pedal is the same as the Comp Limiter in every way … same Gray anodized finish, same footprint and the same simplicity of use with one compression control and one level control. It is pretty much the perfect compressor, so what could Carl possible upgrade? Easy! Carl added a Dry volume which allows you parallel processing with three knobs! Parallel Processing is a studio technique which takes a heavily compressed signal (which through compression loses some dynamics if not all) and allows you to add a clean (Dry) signal on top replacing those dynamics giving your guitar three-dimensionality and allowing the guitar to cut through the mix. For those of you used to studio work, this is a very well-known technique, but usually too complex for a pedal board! The three knobs allow you to balance the Compressed signal with the Dry signal quickly and efficiently for a very pro sound!
The Carl Martin Honey Comp incorporates the special CM developed DC/DC converter circuitry. This enables us to run the pedal with +-12V internally, which is necessary, in order to maintain the same sonic quality and headroom as on the “old” Compressor/Limiter, using a regular 9V DC 200mA external power supply.