Neve 33609

Posted by The Audio Hunt

What is the difference between the Neve 33609 revisions?

Neve 33609


The Neve 33609 is a stereo compressor with an independent limiter section, with its design deriving from those found on the center section of vintage Neve consoles. It features a ‘diode bridge’ topology - a relatively uncommon means of achieving gain reduction. Throughout its time, the 33609 model has seen quite a few different iterations.

The original unit was in fact an adaptation of the Class A/B 2264, 32264 and 33314 compressor/limiter console modules. Often referred to the ’metal knob’ for obvious reasons [see the On/Off switch], these have long been discontinued and replaced by model 33609 C.

AMS Neve 33609 version ‘C’ brought along a new IC-based amplifier and featured Belclere transformers, which allowed for more headroom and a faster release time after clipping.

33609 orig c

Original Neve 33609 (top) & 33609 C (bottom)

The 33609 J was the next iteration of the unit; developed for the Japanese market [hence the name ‘33609 J’], model J featured a non-discrete design, unlike any of its predecessors. Feedback from the Japanese users had encouraged Neve to develop version J/D, which stands for ‘Japan Discrete’. This incarnation [JD] of the 33609 brought back the discrete topology used in previous versions.

The latest model to date, the 33609 N, has the most features compared previous generations – these include a fast and slow switch controlling the attack time, enhanced IO, the reintroduction of the ‘metal knob’ along with the same all-discrete design which the 33609 is famous for.

33609 j jd n

Neve 33609 J (top); 33609 J/D (middle); 33609 N (bottom)

In use, the 33609 series proves to be a versatile tool. Its independent limiter can act as a brick-wall limiter as well, which makes the unit ideal for mastering and broadcasting purposes. Its subtle coloration and general musicality lends itself to individual track processing, although in most cases the 33609 lives on the master bus as many regard it as the perfect all-in-one dynamics unit.


Neve Compressor Gear