Showcasing a professional bass pedalboard setup with a selection of the best pedal compressors for bass, tailored for the modern bassist's needs.

The 5 Best Pedal Compressor For Bass 2024

When it comes to enhancing your bass guitar’s sound, selecting the best pedal compressor for bass is crucial.

A bass compressor pedal is an essential tool for any bassist, whether you’re playing at home, in the studio, or live. It’s often considered as important as an EQ pedal and should be one of your first purchases. But why is a compressor so vital for bass players?

A compressor pedal works like an assistant. It controls your volume knob to ensure consistent volume while you play. It helps in reducing the volume of louder notes while boosting the quieter ones, creating a more balanced sound. This is especially useful for bass players. It makes your playing sound smoother and more professional.

Even if you’re just starting out, a good compressor can make a significant difference in your sound quality. The pedal compressor will offer transparent compression. It won’t alter your tone but will enhance your playing. It’s about finding a pedal that complements your style and fits seamlessly into your setup.

In summary, a bass compressor pedal is a key component in achieving a polished, professional sound. It evens out your playing. It adds punch to your bass lines. It ensures your performance is consistently at its best. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned player, investing in the pedal compressor is a decision you won’t regret.

Our Top Picks

We provide our product links with Amazon assurance whenever possible.

Best Price$100
MXR M87 Bass Compressor
TC Electronic THRUST BQ500
Boss LMB-3
Jim Dunlop Dyna Comp
Empress Effects Bass Compressor

Best Overall: MXR M87 Bass Compressor

The MXR M87 Bass Compressor stands out in the market. This compact, robust unit offers unparalleled tone shaping and compression control, making it a top choice for bassists seeking precision and quality.

Its user-friendly interface and versatile performance cater to both studio recording and live performance needs. This ensures your bass sound is always on point.

The MXR M87 Bass Compressor is celebrated as the pedal compressor, featuring comprehensive controls for fine-tuned sound shaping.


  • Input Impedance: 1 MΩ
  • Output Impedance: 600 Ω
  • Max Input Level: +14 dBu
  • Power Requirements: 9V DC
  • Power Consumption: 19 mA
Pros True Bypass CHT Technology Versatile Controls
Cons Pricey Limited Color Options Battery Consumption

Who Is It For?

The MXR M87 Bass Compressor is the pedal compressor enthusiasts. They demand precision and versatility in their sound. Whether you’re a gigging musician playing live shows or a studio artist looking to refine your bass tones, this pedal is an ideal choice.

Its robust build and reliable performance make it suitable for touring. Its nuanced control options cater to studio recording needs. The M87 can handle everything from subtle tone shaping to aggressive compression.

If you’re seeking a top-tier compressor that delivers consistent, high-quality performance, the MXR M87 is the way to go.

Best Bass Amplifier Head: TC Electronic THRUST BQ500

Discover the TC Electronic THRUST BQ500 is a game-changer in the world of bass amplification. This compact powerhouse delivers exceptional clarity and punch.

It is a top choice for bassists seeking a blend of power and portability. Its intuitive design and robust build quality make it a reliable companion for both studio sessions and live performances.

Integrate the best pedal compressor features for bass with the TC Electronic Thrust BQ500, a robust amplifier designed for dynamic bass sound.


  • Power Output: 500 Watts
  • Preamp: Mosfet with Thrust Compressor
  • EQ: 4-band EQ
  • Inputs: 1 x 1/4″, 1 x 1/8″ (aux)
  • Outputs: 1 x SpeakON, 1 x XLR (direct out)
  • Weight: 2.3 kg (5.1 lbs)
  • Dimensions: 69 x 255 x 233 mm
  • Power Supply: 100-240 V~ 50/60 Hz
Pros Lightweight Design Powerful Output Versatile EQ
Cons Limited Channels No Built-in Effects Single SpeakON Output

Who Is It For?

The TC Electronic THRUST BQ500 is the ideal choice for the modern bassist who demands the pedal compressor. Whether you’re a gigging musician needing a reliable, portable amp head for live shows, or a studio artist looking for crisp, clean bass tones, this amp head has you covered.

Its 500-watt power output ensures your bass cuts through in any mix. The 4-band EQ and Mosfet preamp with Thrust Compressor offer unparalleled tone shaping. Its lightweight design makes it a breeze to transport, perfect for musicians on the go.

If you’re looking for a bass amp head that combines power, portability, and precision, the THRUST BQ500 is your go-to gear.

Best Bass Limiter Pedal: Boss LMB-3

The Boss LMB-3 is offering unparalleled control over your bass guitar’s dynamics. Compact and robust, this pedal is a must-have for bassists seeking to enhance their sound quality.

Its user-friendly interface makes it ideal for both beginners and professionals. It ensures a consistently smooth and powerful bass tone.

Craft your bass sound with the BOSS LMB-3, a prime choice for the pedal compressor, designed for peak performance.


  • Nominal Input Level: -20 dBu
  • Input Impedance: 1 M ohm
  • Nominal Output Level: -20 dBu
  • Output Impedance: 1 k ohm
  • Recommended Load Impedance: 10 k ohms or greater
  • Controls: Level, Enhance, Ratio, Threshold
  • Power Options: 9V battery or AC adaptor
  • Weight: 430 g (1 lb)
Pros Enhanced Clarity Dynamic Control Robust Design
Cons Limited Features No True Bypass Battery Consumption

Who Is It For?

The Boss LMB-3 is the pedal compressor. It’s for those who crave a consistent, powerful bass sound without the hassle of complex setups. It’s perfect for gigging musicians who need reliability and ease of use on stage. Its controls are simple, making it great for beginners.

However, the quality and performance are also enough for professionals. Whether you’re playing jazz, rock, or any genre in between, the LMB-3 enhances your bass tone while keeping it under control.

It’s an essential tool for bassists who want to stand out. Its robust design ensures it can withstand the rigors of touring, making it a reliable companion for any bass player.

Best Classic Compressor Pedal: Jim Dunlop Dyna Comp

The Jim Dunlop Dyna Comp is the pedal compressor. It’s renowned for its ability to enhance music with rich sustain and a distinctive percussive sound. This iconic pedal is celebrated for its simplicity and effectiveness.

It has been a staple on countless pedalboards for years. Its popularity stems from its straightforward use, appealing to musicians who seek to refine their sound with classic compression.

The distinctive red MXR Dyna Comp compressor provides bass players with the essential tool for the best pedal compression, ensuring smooth, even bass lines.


  • Input Impedance: 1 MΩ
  • Output Impedance: 10 kΩ
  • Nominal Input Level: -5 dBV
  • Nominal Output Level: -12 dBV
  • Noise Floor: 95 dBV
  • Total Harmonic Distortion (T.H.D): 0.2% Typical
  • Power Options: 9-volt battery, ECB003 adapter, or DC Brick™ power supplies
Pros Iconic Sustain Simple Operation Versatile Use
Cons Limited Controls No True Bypass Battery Dependency

Who Is It For?

The Jim Dunlop Dyna Comp is an ideal choice for bass players seeking the pedal compressor. Its legendary status comes from its ability to deliver a classic compression sound. It is perfect for musicians who aim to achieve a tight, consistent tone in their bass play.

Whether you’re a gigging professional or a recording artist, this pedal’s simple operation and iconic sustain make it a valuable addition to your setup. It’s ideal for those who enjoy vintage tones and simple functionality, without the complexities of modern pedals.

The Dyna Comp is a must-have for bassists who want to add a touch of classic magic to their sound. It’s a top choice for both seasoned professionals and aspiring musicians.

Best Premium: Empress Effects Bass Compressor

The Empress Effects Bass Compressor is offering unparalleled sound quality and performance. This premium device is tailored for bassists seeking top-notch compression.

It doesn’t sacrifice the natural tone of their instrument. Compact and robust, it’s a game-changer in the realm of bass compression. It’s perfect for both studio recording and live performances.

Dial in the perfect bass sound with the Empress Effects Bass Compressor, a top contender for pedal compressor with its detailed EQ settings.


  • Input Impedance: 1M
  • Frequency Response: 10Hz – 20kHz
  • Distortion: Less than 0.1%
  • Noise Level: -101dB
  • Power Input Voltage: 9V DC (Negative tip)
  • Compression Ratios: 2:1, 4:1, 10:1
  • True Bypass: Yes
  • LED Indicators: Status, Input, Gain Reduction
Pros Ultra-Transparent Sound Wide Frequency Response Versatile Compression Ratios
Cons Premium Price Requires 9V Power Limited Color Options

Who Is It For?

The Empress Effects Bass Compressor is the pedal compressor. It’s for musicians who demand the highest quality in sound and performance. It’s ideal for bassists who play a variety of genres, from jazz to rock, and need a compressor that can adapt to different playing styles.

Whether you’re a studio musician looking for a pedal that preserves your bass’s natural tone, or a live performer needing reliable, high-quality compression on stage, this pedal is for you.

Its wide frequency response and ultra-transparent sound make it a top choice for professionals. They refuse to compromise on sound quality. The Empress Effects Bass Compressor is not just a pedal; it’s an investment in your musical journey.

What I Wish I Knew Before I Got The Pedal Compressor?

  • Understanding Compression: Before purchasing the pedal compressor, it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of what a compressor does.
  • Subtlety is Key: Many bass players realize after purchasing that the best use of a compressor is often subtle. Over-compression can kill the dynamics of your playing, making it sound lifeless.
  • Quality vs. Price: The pedal compressor doesn’t always mean the most expensive one. It’s about finding the right balance between quality and budget.
  • Features and Controls: Understanding the features and controls like threshold, ratio, attack, release, and make-up gain is essential.
  • Pedal Size and Build Quality: The physical size and build quality of the pedal can be a concern, especially for bassists with limited pedalboard space or those who frequently gig.
  • Personal Preference and Play Style: Ultimately, the pedal compressor is subjective and depends on personal preference and play style. What works for one bassist might not work for another.

What does a compressor do?

A compressor pedal, essential for bass players, evens out the dynamic range of your bass guitar’s signal, ensuring a more consistent sound. It works by amplifying quieter notes and dampening louder ones, providing a smoother, more balanced tone.

This is particularly beneficial for bassists as it helps maintain a steady presence in a mix. When looking for the pedal compressor, consider factors like sound quality, ease of use, and how well it preserves your instrument’s natural tone.

Is it worth getting a compressor pedal?

The best pedal compressor for bass is a valuable addition to a bassist’s pedalboard, especially for those seeking to enhance their sound quality and playing dynamics. It evens out the volume, adds sustain, and can make your playing smoother.

While not essential for beginners, it becomes increasingly useful as your playing evolves. For bass players, the pedal compressor offers tailored control, ensuring that your bass lines are consistently clear and impactful, regardless of your playing style. This makes it a worthwhile investment for serious musicians looking to refine their sound.

Martin Brown is a tech-savvy writer with deep expertise in music technology, studio equipment, instruments, and innovative production tools. His interest in music never disappeared from an early age.