Input Impedance: 15K Bridged T-control (floating)
Output Load Impedance: 15K Transformer balanced (floating)
Frequency Response: 20 Hz to 20 kHz ± 1 dB
Gain: 45 dB, ± 1 dB
Distortion: > 0.5% T.H.D. from 50 Hz – 15 kHz with limiting, at 1.1 seconds release setting
Signal-to-Noise Ratio: Output of +22 dBm with no greater than 0.5% T.H.D. > 81 dB with input signal at threshold of limiting over a bandwidth of 30 Hz to 18 kHz
Attack Time: Adjustable, from 20 to 800 microseconds
Release Time: Adjustable, from 50 milliseconds to 1.1 seconds
External Connections: XLR / ¼” TRS (balanced)
Stereo Interconnection: ¼” Phone
Power Requirements: 110V / 220V
Fuse: 500 mA time delay (slow blow) / 110 V, 250 mA time delay (slow blow) / 220 V
Dimensions: 19" W x 3.5" H x 8.5" D (two rack spaces)
Weight: 12 lbs (14 lbs in box)
The DRAGON begins with a classic FET compressor circuit, reminiscent of vintage units from the 60's and 70's, but the SLATE PRO AUDIO / STUDIO ELECTRONICS engineers enhanced the circuitry of the unit with a mastering grade signal path, including a CLASS A output section based around a custom-made transformer. The result is a compression quality that is rich and warm, but is also capable of sharp and aggressive tones; this is only the start of what the DRAGON can produce.
The DRAGON includes three "character" settings that change the way the unit sounds and responds. The first setting is BOOM. This setting adds sub bass harmonics in a unique way that when combined with compression, can make basses sound massive and kick drums pound and "own" the subs. The second setting is BITE, which adds a gentle forward character that makes the source more defined and clear. BITE is superb on bass, snare, vocals and guitars. The third setting is SHEEN; This character setting adds an "airy gloss" to the source, reminiscent of classic opto tube compressors––absolutely stunning on vocals, acoustics and overheads. All character settings can be used simultaneously!
Pressing the DRAGON's VINTAGE button enables circuitry which emulates a distinctly vintage sound from the classic age of audio compression. The result is more harmonics, a bit of "grit" and overall amore aggressive sound that is amazing on electric guitars, bass and a must-hear on drums.
The DRAGON has a three setting saturation selector. This SATURATION can add subtle harmonics or even gritty distortion to the source. On setting 1 it can add just the right "life" to a dull vocal. On setting 2 it can add presence and warmth to a bass; choosing setting 3 can add rich harmonics to a snare to bring out its natural sustain.
The DRAGON includes a HI PASS filter so you have the option to control the amount of low end that feeds the compressor detection circuit. This is extremely useful when stereo linking two DRAGONS together for transparent mixbuss compression, or for grouped drum compression where you don't want the drums to "pump."
Classic FET compressors have not been common mixbuss choices due to their excessive color and aggressive nature. However, the DRAGON includes a gentle 2:1 setting that sounds brilliant on full mixes. With the character VINTAGE and SATURATE options disabled, the signal path is quiet and clean with the perfect amount of rich tone. Of course if you need more color or saturation on your buss, it's a few adjustments away: with settings 2:1, character SHEEN, SATURATE 1, slow ATTACK and fast RELEASE, your mix will come alive in an incredibly vibrant way.
The DRAGON is one of the finest drum compressors to ever hit the analog market and is complete with the famous over-compression "all buttons in" mode called SQUASH. This setting is simply stunning on drum room mics, or any other source that you want to explode out of the mix. Due to its extremely hi-fi signal path, the DRAGON's SQUASH setting can create that larger then life effect without causing a harsh or "brittle" high end.
Last and certainly not least, the DRAGON includes a MIX knob to control the wet/dry ratio of the source. This potent feature allows you to add some heavy compression, and then back it off gently until it creates the ultimate balance for your mix. The MIX knob also allows you to parallel compress sources, such as drum busses, without having to mult or buss the drums to additional faders! You'll find the MIX knob to be one of the most useful tools in modern analog compression.
The DRAGON's faceplate comes with a beautiful tribal mural designed by world renowned tattoo artist Davey Suicide––epic style points for your your rack. This striking, unique look matches the DRAGON's remarkable sound.
Normally compressors don't need presets, but with so many options (there are literally thousands of combinations), we ship the DRAGON with a huge listing of presets created by me, Steven Slate and some of the world's top producers, mixers and even mastering engineers, but once you experience the many possibilities and sounds of the DRAGON, you'll soon enjoy making your own!