Picked these up the other day...


Reel deep thoughts...
dbx 122 and 128...$80 for the pair.

I’m not sure if they work yet but if they don’t I can probably fix them. They are in really good condition.

They were on Craigslist local to me. I watched them for weeks and just kept going “hmmmm”. I don’t have a pressing need for them, but I have a pair of 119s, one of which I upgraded (I have a thread around on that little project) and it sounds really nice. The 117, 118 and 128 have the same proprietary VCA that the classic 163 compressor uses. Does that make it a poor man’s 163? Kinda...but people say it’s different. Anyway, it’s robust old-school analog kit.

The 117 and 119 are stereo compressor/expander units. They have limited control features, so it’s the kind of thing you figure out what it does and it becomes a tool in your toolkit you use for certain things. And the signal path is really simple, and IIRC, at least on the 119 there are ZERO electrolytic caps in the signal path, which is cool.

The 122 is their early Type II noise reduction unit. This is something I was actually looking to get at some point for my Tascam 122B, which has onboard switchable Dolby B noise reduction, and alternatively a switchable path for an external dbx unit. Now I have the dbx unit.

The 128? It’s basically a combination of the 119 and 122. Could be pretty neat for cassette masters on the 122B running at 3.75ips.

Anyway, they weren’t free, but I think the price was reasonable, and it’s good quality classic purposeful kit.



Reel deep thoughts...
Yeah, I totally love how they made them look like a DAW plugin...

. . . .

Bwahahah! :D:D:D

Jk. Yeah I like the look too. And I like real metal knobs and button caps.


transitional phase
Yeah I have a bit of an obsession with early DBX gear... original DBX 160, pair of original DBX 163's, DBX 900 rack (full) and the trusty DBX 119.

equipment rack.jpg