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Empress reboots one of the top compressor pedals on the market, and launches new bass version

Empress Compressor MKII pedal
(Image credit: Empress Effects)

Canada's Empress Effects is famed for numerous stompboxes, chief among them its perennial live and studio favorite, simply known as its Compressor pedal. For 2020, the company has updated and downsized that pedal to become the Compressor MKII, and launched an all-new Bass Compressor.

The Compressor MK II keeps its forebear’s essential controls and features – including independent attack and release controls, mix knob and external sidechain insert – but cuts the physical size of the pedal in half.

There are a couple of new features, too, including a ‘tilt’ tone EQ control, and selectable sidechain high-pass filter, but the all-analog signal path and onboard LEDs remain.

The Bass Compressor features a dedicated control for the sidechain high-pass filter, as well as a two-position ‘tone + colour’ circuit to shape the sound and add harmonic distortion.

Both pedals are available to preorder for $249, and ship on November 25. You can get either of them in a choice of blue or silver sparkle enclosures, too.

For more information, head over to Empress Effects (opens in new tab).

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Mike is Editor-in-Chief of, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar (opens in new tab), Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as the best part of 20 years performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe (opens in new tab).