The Legendary Fairchild


In the field of professional audio, the Fairchild is a legendary reference, acclaimed for its revolutionary role in sound processing.

This audio equipment has marked the history of music recording.

It immerses listeners in an unparalleled sound experience.

This article therefore explores the captivating history of the Fairchild and highlights its worldwide fame.

The Origin of the Fairchild


The roots date back to the 1950s, when Sherman Fairchild, founder of Fairchild Recording Equipment Corporation, introduced an innovative line of audio equipment.

The company quickly gained fame, ushering in an era of advanced audio technologies, symbolized by the legendary Fairchild670.

Recording Revolution

The Fairchild670, a revolutionary stereo compressor/limiter, has transformed music recording.

Adopted by iconic studios such as Abbey Road and Capitol Records, it helped define the sound of legendary works of the 1950s and 1960s.

World renown

His Signature

The fame lies in its distinctive sound signature.

Praised for its ability to compress sound while preserving dynamics, it adds subtle warmth and harmonic color, becoming a staple in the world of professional audio.

Use by Great Artists

Legends such as The Beatles, Frank Sinatra and Miles Davis have chosen the Fairchild for its unique sound processing capabilities.

Featured in classic recordings, it has therefore solidified its place as an essential tool in musical history.

How the Fairchild 670 works

Understanding Compression

The Fairchild670 uses tube-based variable compression, providing fine control over sound dynamics.

Understanding circuits, attacks and release times allows sound engineers to sculpt sound with exceptional precision.

Unique Features

Among its notable features is the ability to compress by adding pleasant harmonics.

Independent left and right channel controls enable complex stereo shaping, while the “Time Constant” setting influences the compressor’s temporal response.

Fairchild Electronics

Lamps and Transformers

At the heart of the electronics are quality tubes, including the 6386 and 5670 tubes, combined with high-end transformers.

These components therefore contribute significantly to the Fairchild’s unique sound signature.

Circuit Diagram

The precise circuit diagram is essential for its optimal operation.

Appreciated by audiophile engineers, it stands out by its exceptional manufacturing quality and the intelligent arrangement of components.

Innovation and Precision

Premium Quality Tubes

The use of high-quality tubes is crucial in the Fairchild’s electronics, contributing to its distinctive warmth and sonic coloration.

The meticulous choice of these tubes therefore contributes to the Fairchild’s reputation for its exceptional sound reproduction.

Transformers: Keys to the Sound Signature

Transformers play a vital role in the design of the Fairchild, influencing its sound coloration and its frequency response.

The careful selection of these components contributes to the unique sonic identity, providing musicality and warmth prized by audio engineers.

Compression Circuit: A Revolutionary Approach

The compression circuit is revolutionary in its approach. Rather than applying uniform compression, the Fairchild uses automated circuitry to adjust compression based on signal level.

This innovative approach provides more precise control over dynamics, creating a natural compressed sound.

Fairchild Reputation: From Studios to Stars

Music Studios and the Adoption of the Fairchild

Since its introduction, it has conquered many prestigious music studios.

Its rapid adoption by renowned audio engineers has contributed to its status as a high-end device, essential for shaping the sound of iconic musical productions.

Presence in Legendary Productions

The Fairchild has left its mark on the history of music by participating in legendary productions.

Iconic recordings of rock, jazz and classical music bear the distinctive sound signature of the Fairchild, favored by artists and producers for its crucial role in creating timeless sonic masterpieces.

Modern Use of the Fairchild: A Maintained Legacy

Software Emulation in the Digital Age

With the advent of the digital age, several companies have developed software emulations of the Fairchild.

These reproductions aim to capture the unique sonic character of the original, allowing modern producers to explore the classic sound of the Fairchild without requiring the physical equipment.

Contemporary Studios and Appeal

Despite technological developments, many contemporary studios continue to use the original Fairchild.

Its appeal endures because of its timeless sonic character and its invaluable role in the recording process.

Modern audio engineers therefore still consider the Fairchild an essential part of their arsenal of audio tools.

Fairchild Unique Features: Two Machines in One

Compression and Limitation: A Double Advantage

A distinctive feature of the Fairchild is its ability to operate in compression and limitation mode.

This feature provides precise management of sound levels, giving audio engineers exceptional versatility in processing audio signals.

It therefore stands out as a complete machine offering total control over musical dynamics.

Potentiometers and Intuitive Settings

The potentiometers are precisely designed to allow intuitive and precise parameter adjustment.

This ergonomic design therefore facilitates the use of the device even in demanding environments such as live recording sessions.

The Fairchild’s intuitive settings make it a tool appreciated by sound engineers for its user-friendliness.

Restoring a Fairchild: An Art in Itself

The Community of Vintage Audio Equipment Restorers

Restoring a Fairchild is a delicate process requiring specialized expertise.

A community of vintage audio restorers has formed, dedicated to the preservation and restoration of these historic pieces.

Their work therefore contributes to maintaining the availability and exceptional performance of the Fairchild.

The Challenges of Restoration and the Quest for Authenticity

Restoration presents unique challenges due to the scarcity of replacement parts and the complexity of vintage electronics.

Conservators therefore strive to preserve authenticity while resolving age-related technical issues.

The quest for authenticity guides these restorers in their mission to bring these iconic pieces of audio history back to life.

Technological Evolution and the Fairchild Legacy

Influence on Later Designs of Audio Equipment

The Fairchild’s influence on later audio equipment designs is undeniable.

Elements of its innovative design can be found in many modern compressors.

Its legacy lives on in the continued evolution of audio hardware, shaping the way audio engineers approach compression and sound coloring.

Continuing Impact in the Music Industry

Even decades after its introduction, it continues to have a significant impact in the music industry.

Its persistent use in renowned productions and its status as a reference device help to maintain its influence.

The Fairchild therefore remains a pillar of audio history, recalling the importance of innovation and timeless sound quality.


The Fairchild remains an undisputed icon in the world of professional audio.

Its fascinating history, worldwide reputation, innovative operation and sophisticated electronics make it a sought-after tool for audio engineers and producers.

Celebrating the Fairchild pays homage to an era when technology audio forged the sound of modern music.


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