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The Bill Putnam-designed tube compressors that changed recording.

Introduced in the early 1960s, Universal Audio's 175B and 176 compressors were the first audio compressors purpose-built for studio recording and mixing music. Often cited among the crowning achievements of audio pioneer and UA founder Bill Putnam Sr., the 175B and 176 are prized for their rich tube gain reduction character, fast attack, and sonic flexibility.

With only roughly 1,000 units made, vintage 175B and 176s easily command well over $5,000 on the vintage market today, and they can be found in the racks of some of the world's finest studios. Now, you can track and mix with the only authentic plug-in emulation of the original UA 175B and 176 compressors — exclusively for UAD hardware and UA Audio Interfaces.

Track and mix with the only authentic emulations of Bill Putnam Sr.'s most coveted compressor designs

Add vintage tube gain reduction character and detail to vocals, drums, guitars, and more

Spice up any source with harmonically rich tube amplifier and transformer emulation

Creatively control or enhance the dynamics of your most important sources with 2:1, 4:1, 8:1 and 12:1 ratio controls

Harness plug-in-only features like Dry/Wet Mix parallel processing and Headroom for user‑customizable operating level

Mix with artist presets from Jacquire King (Kings of Leon, Tom Waits), Carl Glanville (U2, Bruce Springsteen), Joe Chiccarelli (My Morning Jacket, Beck), and more

Take a Listen

Take a Listen
A Pioneering Limiter

A Pioneering Limiter

With its breakthrough fast attack time and independently variable Attack and Release controls, the UA 175B and 176 went far beyond all previously available broadcast limiters. They were quickly installed in the early 1960's at both United/Western and legendary Sunset Sound studios, where a rack of 176s still reside today. As an all-tube predecessor to the famed 1176, the 175B and 176 compressors have lent warmth and character to thousands of seminal recordings — from the Rolling Stones and Elton John, to Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, Aretha Franklin, and Miles Davis.

Emulating a Masterpiece

Emulating a Masterpiece

Based on a pair of UA's 1960s golden units, the UA 175B and 176 Tube Compressor Collection plug-ins expertly capture Putnam’s tube-based gain reduction designs, as well as the tube amplifier's ultra-musical harmonics and rich, low-frequency transformer saturation. Putnam’s feedback compression circuit is key to the 175B/176 mojo, yielding softer compression at lower input levels and harder, nearly brickwall limiting at higher levels.

All-Around Champ

All-Around Champ

Sonically, the 175B and 176 compressors are often compared favorably to a Fairchild compressor, albeit with more versatile controls. As such, they're perfect for vocals, drums, guitars, and more. The UA 175B and 176 Tube Compressor Collection plug-ins give you all the character and juice of the originals — indistinguishable from the target hardware in blind listening tests.

In Action

In Action

Delicate when you need subtle control, but colorful when slammed, these plug-ins can add depth to room mics or a drum bus, give your guitars definition, park a bass in a mix, and inject vocals with energy. You can even turn off the compression completely and use the 175B/176 plug-ins as a "tone box," lending rich tube amplifier and transformer textures galore.

Key Features

Painstaking circuit emulation of Bill Putnam Sr.'s rare and iconic 175B and 176 tube compressors

Models the entire circuit path and control set of the original hardware units

UA 175B features a fixed 12:1 Ratio, 176 features four selectable Ratios: 2:1, 4:1, 8:1 and 12:1

Exclusive plug-in features include Sidechain Link, Dry/Wet Mix parallel processing and Headroom for user-customizable operating level

Includes artist presets from Jacquire King (Kings of Leon, Tom Waits), Carl Glanville (U2, Bruce Springsteen), Joe Chiccarelli (My Morning Jacket, Beck), and more

Requires a UAD-2 DSP Accelerator or UA Audio Interface, available from authorized dealers worldwide

Customer Reviews

UA 175B & 176 Tube Compressor Collection

Overall Rating

R. Graterol

August 19, 2022

Very thick sounding compressors

I thought: I don't need another compressor... yet here I am. I realized I did not have tube compressors in my UAD arsenal and this filled a gap in my plugin folder (I already own all the usual suspects: 1176, LA2A, Distressor, etc). I was really impressed with these plugins, for me they performed best in drums and bass, adding a very thick low end and elegantly smoothing transients, and the compression overall is very transparent. I compared these with other vari mu emulations which are fractions of the cost but this came out better. The harmonic distortion of these plugins is very musical. I highly recommend them.

F. San Filippo

July 28, 2022

Realistic analog sound

You absolutely don’t need these, but they are awesome.

I. Papagiannidis

July 18, 2022

Best for vocals!!

Best for focal tracking! Amazing sounding combined with tape ,like oxide!

G. Murillo

July 13, 2022

Muy bueno

Muy bueno

B. Schimmel

March 20, 2022

Just insanly good.

Since I‘ve got it I use it on nearly everthing ;).

P. Johnson

March 2, 2022

Works great

User friendly UA compressor with a few more bells and whistles.

F. Kalmus

January 17, 2022

I love it's richful meanwhile silky sound with nice touch of compression

My No.1 on all of my acoustic strings and vocal recording.

n. binns

January 15, 2022

Solid

Solid emulation. Absolutely gorgeous tone and very effective tool to have around.

G. Merino

January 15, 2022

Nasty!!

Awesome comps, the most colorful of my arsenal, lot of grit and character!
I’m not giving 5 stars only because the small GUIs, the graphics are nice but so tiny. Please make this one bigger or resizable!

T. Liljegren

December 12, 2021

Woaw!

My favourite compressor on almost everything. Fat and natural.
Watch out for huge ess-boosting on vocals though.

D. Shapland

December 10, 2021

Epic 1167 alternative

The 175/176 bundle is awesome, I love these compressors on just about everything, if you are looking for 1176 style compression but with a rounder warmer tone these are the way to go!! A staple in all of my mixes.

F. Martinsen

October 1, 2021

Fat warm huge tone

Love this compressor, tried the demo first and it got stuck on several things in my mixes just had to purchase this amazing compressor.

P. Bryer

July 27, 2021

Beautiful sound. Great tone.

Got these to round out my compressor collection. Put the 175B on Ravel - stunning! Just sounds great. Lovely warm tone. Can’t wait to try them in all situations!

J. Manness

April 29, 2021

Amazing tone box!

I've been revisiting the 176 because it's made such a difference putting it on submixes and the master bus. The trick is to mess with the HR so you get the right balance of tone and compression. If you normally reach for the Fairchild plugin, use this!

R. Neville

April 20, 2021

This came with my octo satellite

I’ve never heard of these compressors before but damn, they sound so good. I replaced the LA-2A with the 175 and 176 and immediately it added some colour that really brought out the vocals. Absolutely amazing!

J. Markunas

April 11, 2021

A Must Have For Vocals!

I bought this plugin after reading Sylvia Massey's book (and seeing a few of her studio tours on YouTube). This compressor set is magic on vocal chains, I'd even go as far as to say I like it better than the LA-2A on vocals. It adds a magic sheen and smoothness to harsh vocals, and in my case, vocals that weren't recorded in a sound-dead room. Plus, at $150 it's a no-brainer. Buy it!

D. Montoya

April 7, 2021

These two rule on acoustic instruments

Fat. Huge. Warm. Round. Clear. I've always had trouble getting smaller acoustic instruments to sit in a mix. Whatever voodoo UA has placed in this plugin magically makes these instruments sit authoritatively in a mix.

P. Gent

March 31, 2021

Peter G

I trialled this one and bought it on the spot. I record podcasts and although I like LA-2A and 1176 compressors on my voice, this thing is pure butter with my SM7B. Absolutely gorgeous sounds.

I use the compressor in the Precision Channel Strip as a peak limiter, then have this following just taking off a further 1 to 2 dB.

I highly recommend that you try this compressor.

J. MARTINEZ

March 16, 2021

The closest to the real McCoy I guess

Excellent plugins. Easy to work with on pretty much any application.

R. Walsh

March 8, 2021

Great Compressor

My go to for acoustic guitar