“A good soil compactor is one that’s simple to operate and reasonably comfortable for the operator, and it just doesn’t break,” says Mark Eckert, Volvo Construction Equipment global product manager.

Such simplicity is important, according to manufacturers, because the soil roller is often an introductory machine, and on some jobsites, there may not be a dedicated operator so various workers run it as needed.Though simple is the watchword, today’s compactors often come standard with or have a variety of optional technology that might seem complicated but can make operating a soil compactor even easier.

The advanced technology is also a nod to younger operators who like technology and the quicker learning curve it can provide. And contractors facing labor shortages and a lack of experienced operators can yield higher production numbers and increased efficiency.

What tech is right for you?

Of course, that new technology can carry a hefty price, especially when it comes to intelligent compaction.But OEMs have been adding several new advancements that stop short of full IC yet provide some powerful tools for operators and require pushing only a button or two.