Product Review // Seventeen // MusicTech Magazine ~ John Pickford

Product Review // Seventeen // MusicTech Magazine ~ John Pickford
November 29, 2020 Royce Richmond
In Product Reviews

A classic piece of studio design is brought kicking and screaming into the 21st century. How has Black Lion Audio achieved this astonishing feat?

The Seventeen isn’t an all-out replication of the 1176, like Warm Audio’s WA76 for example, as it boasts several useful features not found on originals or clones. On its website, Black Lion Audio makes this clear with possibly the best opening gambit I’ve ever read about an audio product: “The Seventeen is not the ’76 compressor that your grandfather recorded with. It isn’t even a remake, but rather the Black Lion spin on what the ’76 should have been”. You’ve got to admire the chutzpah…

Before looking at the Seventeen’s unique features, let’s click some checkboxes regarding its ’76 status. A standard 2U 19-inch rackmount unit, the Seventeen is a single-channel (mono) FET compressor. It has front-panel controls for Input and Output, both of which are indented, offering 41 stepped levels of adjustment, along with separate 11-position stepped controls for attack and release. Attack response is adjustable from 20us to 800us (microseconds), fast enough to tame initial transients, while release times are available from 50ms to 800ms.

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