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19-09 Optical Compressor

Optical Compression Reimagined.

The Concept

The 19-09 OPTICAL COMPRESSOR was designed to be set apart from any other compressor available today. It is a completely new take on optical compression. From the twin push-pull optos to the completely custom ALL-DISCRETE op-amps, this compressor is NO CLONE. Delivering excellent tone-shaping character that can be sharp and aggressive like no opto you’ve ever heard, or so smooth and transparent you’d never guess it’s there. All this, plus an unparalleled ease-of-use that will make any engineer feel right at home within moments trying it.

Attention to Detail

The 19-09 was meticulously designed by J.Morris in Austin, Tx. Every aspect of the circuit, from resistors to opto cells, was reviewed and revised until the compressor satisfied his life-long TONE-LUST and his commitment to creating practical studio tools for engineers that don’t want to be bogged down with unnecessary controls during a fast-paced session. His design mantra was simply:  “Stunning Tone. Quickly”.

One Compress Knob to Rule Them All

The 19-09 features a SINGLE KNOB for controlling the amount of compression. But this ain’t no fixed threshold box! The compress knob controls both the threshold and our AUTOMATIC RATIO DETECTION circuit which tracks your signal and dynamically adjusts the compression ratio to compliment it. In a session all you have to worry about is turning the COMPRESS KNOB until it sounds AMAZING.

Sidechain Insane

The 19-09′s sidechain was designed to be as straight-forward and intuitive as possible. First, our HI/LO button adds a 6db boost to the signal controlling the compression. This lets you apply subtle compression to quiet sources with ease. Next, with our 250Hz-centered hi-pass filter you’ll be able to add openness and clarity to bass-heavy sources. With the hi-pass engaged on a bass guitar you’ll be treated to a nice controlled bottom-end that still has  plenty of punch!

Midrange Tone

The ATTACK and RELEASE knobs on the 19-09 have been set to a range chosen specifically to give you maximum CONTROL over the shape and character of you midrange TONE. We’ve quite consciously chosen to not print the time-constants on the panel to free the engineer from what “should sound right” and to focus on simply what sound moves them the most. Turn the knobs in one direction, and you’ll be able to add bite and aggression to guitars and bass, and in the other direction to gently tuck a vocal into a mix. Did we mention that this thing KILLS on DRUM BUS?!

Classic Character Modern Attitude

We’ve taken inspiration from the greatest designs of the past and built upon them to create something genuinely new in the pro-audio world: a compressor that is unlike anything else in your rack. One that you’ll enjoy tracking and mixing with for years to come.


  • True Hardware Bypass
  • Fully-Discrete Class A Design
  • Floating Transformer-Balanced I/O
  • Automatic Ratio Control featuring Twin Push-Pull Optos
  • 30db of Gain Reduction!
  • Strobing Gain Reduction Meter for Precise Visual Feedback
  • Butterworth Hi-Pass Filter (250Hz)
  • 20db of Makeup Gain
  • Classic Distortion Profile
  • Hand-built in Austin,Texas


Get It Now!




1909 Opto Comps are shipping!

1909 PotsThe 1909 is back in stock! Earlier this year, we had a major setback when a distributor dropped the 1909′s control pots from the market with no warning. The 1909′s entire mechanical construction is based on potentiometers that fit a very specific form factor, not just any pot will work! I’m glad to say after much searching we managed to find new pots that fit the layout perfectly. We’re back in business, thank you for being patient! <3

J Morris

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19-09 Temporarily OUT OF STOCK

Because of a massive influx of orders over the holiday season and retooling our supply-chain to prevent part-related delays we’ve temporarily stopped taking orders on our 19-09 Opto Compressor until all present orders are filled. If you are a customer whose order has been delayed we thank you for your patience and want to assure you that filling all our present orders is our number one priority.
For all our future and prospective customers, rest assured that we are working around the clock to iron out our manufacturing process and will be offering compressors for your audio enjoyment in no time.

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WD Anniversary Sale!

Hello Everybody,

Western Dynamo is turning terrible-two! And though that may mean we’ve got a long way to go before they’ll start serving us in bars, it certainly won’t stop us from celebrating.
We’re happy to announce our ANNIVERSARY SALE EVENT!

From December 14th-22nd we’ll be dramatically discounting our tone-hugging 19-09 Optical Compressors.

Save nearly $150 off a single channel, and an unbelievable $400 off a pair!!! That’s an unprecedented savings on incredible compression.

So don’t delay! Place your order now.

Now if you’ll excuse us, I think we ate too much birthday cake. *blows party favor whistle*

-Western Dynamo

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