MayFly Flat Earth Review
A vintage-style compressor that combines relative silence and squish.
Great sounding vintage compression. Easy to use. Lower noise floor.
Many modern comps have more options.
MayFly Audio Flat Earth
Traditionally, comps that come out of the Ross/DynaComp school offer three things: simple controls, that signature squish, and a bit of noise. Although the Flat Earth definitely feels like part of this lineage, it’s relatively quiet. That’s partly thanks to a circuit that uses a LM13700 chip inside the feedback loop. A small, but significant, design choice that makes a world of difference.
Designer Trevor May also believes that compressors usually have too many controls. And the May Fly certainly keeps things simple. There are level and sustain knobs, just as you’d see on many basic comps, but May adds an attack control giving players the option to lend notes a bit more or less definition when picking. My first experience with Ross/Dyna Comp-style compressors came by way of approximating the clean arpeggio tones that appeared in so many ’80s power ballads. And it was great to have access to that feeling as I cranked the sustain. Plugging in a Les Paul and adding some dirt via a Jackson Audio Optimist, I was able to get a smoother sound while still preserving that balance of touch, squish and sustain. Overall, the Flat Earth is a dynamite option for players who need vintage-style tones with a no-brainer setup and that would love a lower noise floor for extra gain pedals.
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