DBX 118 Dynamic Range Enhancer

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DBX 118 Dynamic Range Enhancer


1 in stock

  • Description
  • Additional information


DBX logo

DBX 118

Dynamic Range Enhancer


The DBX 118 is a versatile dynamic enhancer, it is a single band linear expander, a linear compressor, a limiter and a peak unlimiter.

Notice the expansion/compression control. You can use it to set just the amount of dynamic range expansion you want. Where large level variations are undesirable, you can compress the entire dynamic range, bringing the quiet and loud portions of your music closer together.

Just to the left is a threshold control. When expanding, this can be used to set the point in your music’s dynamic range below which music becomes quieter, and above which it becomes louder. If you place the button on the far left in the out position, the 118 becomes an above-threshold expander, or peak unlimiter. This means only loud portions of the dynamic range which exceed your pre-set threshold will be expanded, (made louder).

Above threshold expansion is most useful for programs which were compressed only at high levels. If your 118 is in compression mode, the reverse is true – it becomes an above threshold compressor or limiter. That means signals rising above your threshold will be made more quiet.

The amber and red LEDs tell you when the signal is above or below threshold. They are your guide in setting threshold levels.

The DBX 118 can be used with Dolby B tape noise reduction, and will provide additional noise reduction. Two DBX 118’s can be coupled to track accurately in four channel applications.


Compression ratio: continuously variable to infinity

Expansion ratio: continuously variable to 2.0

Dynamic range (peak signal to weighted background noise): 110dB

Input level (nominal): 300mV

Output level: 7V rms

Frequency response: 20 Hz to 20 kHz

Total harmonic distortion: 0.1% typical

Dimensions: 95.25 x 185.7 x 260.35mm

Weight: 2.26kg

Year: 1981

Description of work

The following tasks and parts have either been repaired or replaced:
Capacitors replaced with Nichicon Fine Gold audio types
New CA723CT regulator
PCB checked and re-soldered
Replaced all RCA’s with new gold sockets and treated with DeoxIT
Treated all potentiometers with DeoxIT
Treated all contacts points with DeoxIT
Stained and sealed the wood side panels
Washed and cleaned chassis
New 240 volt AC power lead
Tested in excess of 4 hours

Warranty: 12 months


Beautifully restored DBX 118 Dynamic Range Enhancer, my experience with DBX equipment is that I owned an 118 back in the mid 1980’s!  These processors work flawlessly and do a awesome job in enhancing the sound quality of any recordings, regardless of source.

This dbx 118 came from a 1980’s period audiophile and has been taken well care of. We replaced all the RCA sockets because they were badly oxidized, the power supply regulator was replaced and all the capacitors, they were low in there values, so they were replaced with audio quality types.

Back in the day these units were used to enhance a system and they did… very well!


RV HIFI is passionate about Vintage HIFI, so we believe in doing the job right!

Additional information

Weight 4 kg
Dimensions 48 x 32 x 22 cm