Initial Audio has released the IA-LA1 compressor. No, it isn’t a carbon copy of the LA-2A, although it does borrow some ideas from the classic. With very few controls, IA-LA1 seems easy to use and promises quick results. And here’s a nifty feature: you can dial in the amount of total harmonic distortion (THD) and control how much the compressor colours the signal.
Initial Audio IA-LA1
Only a few days after Dynamic Delay, Initial Audio has already released the next plug-in. With a limited number of knobs, the IA-LA1 compressor plug-in is designed for ease of use. It’s not quite a one-knob compressor, but it takes a cue from the famous LA-2A and offers two simple controls for adjusting the compression: threshold and makeup. The other parameters like ratio, attack and release are either fixed or determined automatically; Initial Audio hasn’t shared the details. This means that IA-LA1 is not a surgical precision tool, but rather a compressor/limiter designed for quick, musical results. It also offers input, output and gain reduction meters, as well as an input gain control and a compress/limit switch, another detail inspired by the LA-2A.
According to Initial Audio, the IA-LA1 uses a transparent algorithm that doesn’t colour the signal. But sometimes a bit of colouration might be what you want. That’s where the THD knob comes in. It lets you dial in the desired amount of total harmonic distortion for adding warmth and depth to the sound. That’s a nice feature that opens up new sonic possibilities.
If IA-LA1 sounds as good and behaves as musically as its LA-2A heritage suggests, it’ll be an interesting alternative to other simplified compressors. Especially for the USD 19 intro price!
Price and compatibility
IA-LA1 is now available from the Initial Audio website for USD 19. The regular price will be USD 79.
The plug-in runs on macOS and Windows in VST and AU formats (64 bit only). A free demo is available.