I have tried the Accu-chek compact. It is really not that great. It takes more blood than the Ultra and the test takes longer. It is also bigger and heavier like you said. The SOftclix device is great. I have also tried the Accu-chek active. This requires a smaller amount of blood, is lighter, has a canister of strips (not a drum), and is faster. The strips are pretty different from the Ultra and will take some getting used to.
I personally use the Accu-chek Softclix lancing device and find that it works well for me. I had to work with the settings to get the setting that gives me a good drop of blood without going too deep, though, and you will have to do the same. Any new system will take some adjustment. As for the Accu-chek Compact, I personnally don't know about that particular glucose monitor. However, I use the Accu-chek Advantage and am happy with it. I have compared its results to lab blood tests, and find that the results are very accurate. The Advantage does not use a drum dispenser, but uses the one-strip at a time system that allows the user to replace a strip quickly if a test goes wrong. You may want to check to see if your insurance company will cover this one if you do not wish to use the automatic dispenser system. The government health care system used by military dependents covers the Accu-chek Advantage, so I feel confident that most insurance companies would also cover it. You might want to check the Accu-chek website to see what other styles of Accu-check monitors are available and then contact your insurance company to see if one that you like is covered (https://secure.ndpharmacy.com/diabeticsupplies.htm#Accu-chek).