Planning a small pedalboard

A reader’s question:

I guess, you are well versed in planning pedalboards.
I have a big studio board, which I like a lot, but for it is not even easy to manage the transport.
Now, I want to assemble a smaller and more compact pedalboard.
For overdrive effects I use my amp and the Ibanez Tubescreamer TS 808 and the Vahlbruch Kaluna.
Due to the lack of space, delay and modulation ought to be (as far as possible) combined in one enclosure. I also think midi might be important…
The Boss GT 1000 Core could be one of those which offers all the sounds I know (DD, MD and RV of the 500 series).
But it also has uncountable overdrive effects that I do not need. Nevertheless, is the quality of the delay, modulation and reverb therefore worse?
Do you know an alternative to the GT 1000 Core, or do you think it is ok?
I really like Boss pedals, live on stage and also in the rehearsal room. And especially here, I need a compact pedalboard.
In the studio I use my big pedalboard – mostly analog.
By the way: I am not even a fan of editing, so a small display and a easy handling would be perfect.

DelayDude:

Its always a bit difficult to assemble a compact pedalboard that is also flexible.
The Boss GT 1000 Core might be a solution, but for you already have several overdrive pedals, it would be even better to choose a pedal that is specialized in creating delay- and reverb-effects. The more features a pedal offers, the less capacity can be used for every single effect.
But if you want a multi effect anyway, the Eventide H9 might be interesting for you. It offers midi, is compact and has a superb sound. Furthermore, you can select 4 parameters per preset directly and control them via a pot. After you have successfully completed the programming, it is pretty easy to handle. But it is not able to combine several effects. Thus, it would only act as a delay or a reverb.
As an alternative, you could also choose the Line6 M5. It offers midi as well, sounds pretty nice, is a real bargain, the programming is quite easy and it is compact.
I use the M5 on one of my pedalboards as a supplement. But, similar to the H9, it only offers one effect at the time.
The handling of the HX Stomp whereas seems somewhat confusing to me.

For most combined pedals have a certain focus, it makes sense to think about your preferences first. What is more important to you: a delay or a reverb?

The Boss devices (DD-500 and RV- 500) also offer a reverb and a delay setting. If you are looking for a flexible delay and only need a little reverb, the DD-500 might be the perfect match for you anyway.

And the Empress Echosystem offers reverb besides the numerous delay effects.
For the Boss pedal as well as the Empress pedal offer the possibility to combine two presets, you would be able to get both.

But the only “real” pedal that combines delay and reverb and that can be controlled via midi is the Source Audio Collider. It is a combination of the Nemesis and the Ventris. But for a really distinguished adjustment, you will have to use the app. Anyway, if you have adjusted the basic sound (or use the presets), the pots will be sufficient to customize the sound.

Sound vs. handling

Provided that you are also looking for modulation, things will get a bit more complicated.
Of course, you can use the delay part of the Collider to create effects like chorus/vibrato (modulation of the delay time) and tremolo (modulation of the level), but this is not as easy as with one of the common modulation- effect. In this case, the handling of a multi-effect would be easier. In the end, you have the choice between sound and handling.

If the pedal ought to be compact and extensively equipped at the same time, you won’t be able to avoid menus and a display to adjust your sounds. Or you chose two pedals instead of one. The Collider for superb delay/reverb and a separate modulation pedal. With midi control in addition, this might be a very good option.

It always depends on your individual preferences and needs. For there is always too little space on the pedalboard, I dispense with a modulation pedal and create the vibrato- or tremolo-effect with my delay pedals. And I can also forgo flanger and phaser.
Regarding a compact pedalboard, to me it is generally more important to pare my pedals down to those which are really necessary for my music.
And to be honest, I don’t like menu-diving or the use of apps as well, thus I use the space on my pedalboard for the most important effect pedals.

Mostly, it makes sense to start with a little number of pedals first and add further pedals later. Removing a (unused) pedal from the pedalboard is habitually harder.
For I love delay- and reverb-sounds, I use only little space on my pedalboard for drive pedals (either booster and overdrive in one enclosure or even a single overdrive pedal).
And less pedals on the board will in the end improve your basic sound.

Enjoy planning your new pedalboard!

Empress Echosystem vs. Wampler Faux Tape Echo

This is a comparison of the Empress Echosystem with the Wampler Faux Tape Echo.
These two digital delays emulate the sounds of a tape echo. Both provide a very nice modulation and the sound can be fine-tuned quite well via the tone control.

 

0:10 Echosystem: new tape/ Faux Tape Echo: stock setting Continue reading “Empress Echosystem vs. Wampler Faux Tape Echo”

Mr. Black Vintage Chorus or TC Electronic Corona Mini?

A reader’s question to the Dude:

I use a Mr. Black Vintage Chorus Mini and it sounds superb.
I just notice a little latency, which might be just in my mind. But I asked Mr.
Black himself and he said it’s ‘fully 24-bit DSP’. So, it has no analog dry through.
Now I wonder if for example the TC Electronic Corona Mini, which has analog dry through, would be even better.
But on the other hand, the TC Electronic Corona Mini is unable to reach the sonic quality of the Vintage Chorus.
I’m just curious about what you think about this issue. Continue reading “Mr. Black Vintage Chorus or TC Electronic Corona Mini?”

Catalinbread Belle Epoch vs. Empress Echosystem

This is a comparison of the Catalinbread Belle Epoch with the Empress Echosystem.
The Belle Epoch emulates the legendary Echoplex EP-3 as well as the respective algorithm of the Echosystem. Both delays provide modulation, a tone control and for those, who like grittier sounds, they also add some dirt to the signal.

0:11 Empress Echosystem Echoplex algorithm Continue reading “Catalinbread Belle Epoch vs. Empress Echosystem”

Which pedal should I get?

A reader’s question:

Last year (after several years of playing the guitar) I finally bought my first effect pedals: the Walrus Audio Slö, the Earthquaker Devices Westwood and the Ditto looper.
I mostly listen to minimal, indie and ambient and therefore, I would love to create such sounds myself. But unfortunately, I have not made up my mind about a specific sound. Continue reading “Which pedal should I get?”

Meine liebsten Digital Delays

Oft werde ich gefragt, welche meine Favoriten unter den Delays sind und ich muss gestehen, dass ich mich mit der Beantwortung dieser Frage wahnsinnig schwertue.
Trotzdem bin ich mal in mich gegangen und habe in den Kategorien analog Delays, digital Delays und Tape Emulationen jeweils eine Top-Gruppe zusammengestellt.
Innerhalb der Gruppen gilt, dass die Nennung der einzelnen Delays, beziehungsweise ihre Reihenfolge in den Videos nichts darüber aussagt, welches von ihnen ich am besten finde.
Ich könnte kein klares Ranking in den Gruppen vornehmen, weil ich mich zwischen den jeweils vorgestellten Delays mit ihren Vorzügen und „Nachteilen“ (wenn man meine Kritikpunkte überhaupt als solche bezeichnen kann) nicht entscheiden könnte. Daher erfolgt ihre Nennung in alphabetischer Reihenfolge.
In diesem letzten Teil der Serie geht es um meine liebsten digital Delays.

0:03 Boss DD-200 Continue reading “Meine liebsten Digital Delays”

My favorite digital delay pedals

Many times, I have been asked about my favorite delay pedals and I must confess, that this question is soo hard to answer to.
Nevertheless, after a long time of thinking and trying, I figured out groups of my favorite delays regarding the categories analog delays, digital delays and tape emulations.
The order of the delays within the respective group or video is no ranking for I am unable to tell which of them I like best. Thus, the presentation is according to the alphabetical order of their names.
This last part is dedicated to my favorite digital delay pedals. Continue reading “My favorite digital delay pedals”

My favorite tape emulations

Because of the numerous requests regarding my favorite delays, I tried to figure out my top delays and I want to start this three-part series with my favorite tape emulations.
The order of the delays within the respective group or video is no ranking for I am unable to tell which of them I like best. Thus, the presentation is according to the alphabetical order of their names.
Check out the reasons why I have chosen these delays here.

0:03 Echosystem Continue reading “My favorite tape emulations”

My favorite tape emulations

Many times, I have been asked about my favorite delay pedals and I must confess, that this question is soo hard to answer to.
Nevertheless, after a long time of thinking and trying, I figured out groups of my favorite delays regarding the categories analog delays, digital delays and tape emulations. Continue reading “My favorite tape emulations”

Empress Echosystem vs. Hughes & Kettner Replex

This is a comparison of the Empress Echosystem with the Hughes & Kettner Replex.
In this demo I compare different settings of drive and vintage factor of the Hughes & Kettner Replex with varying tape modes of the Empress Echosystem.

 

0:12 Replex:single head, vintage factor fccw/ Echosystem: new tape Continue reading “Empress Echosystem vs. Hughes & Kettner Replex”

Tape Emulation, analog and digital delay – how do they sound with an overdrive pedal (Paul Cochrane Timmy)?

This is a comparison of three different types of delays all accompanied by the Timmy.
For this demo I used a classic analog delay (Electro Harmonix Deluxe Memory Man), a tape echo emulation (Strymon Volante) and a digital delay (Empress Echosystem).
The Paul Cochrane Timmy is probably the best choice, if you are looking for a transparent overdrive. so, go ahead and find out, how it affects every single type of delay depending on the respective kind of playing (like dynamic playing, modulation, in the mix).
If you are looking for a sonic sneak peak, check out 1:22.

0:04 EXH Deluxe Memory Man with Timmy Continue reading “Tape Emulation, analog and digital delay – how do they sound with an overdrive pedal (Paul Cochrane Timmy)?”

Empress Echosystem Freezification vs. Gamechanger Audio PLUS Pedal

This is a comparison of the Freezification-mode of the Empress Echosystem with the Gamechanger Audio PLUS Pedal.
In this comparison, I used different times for attack and release and altered the adjustment of the tone pot in the different sound files to create varying tonal colorings.
Especially in the second file you will hear the sonic difference between the PLUS Pedals and the Echosystem. While the PLUS Pedal puts the layers on top of each other and fades out more fluently, the current signal of the Echosystem fades out completely before the next sound wave arises. Depending on the style of playing, this difference regarding the blend effect can be used quite purposefully.

1:39 Kill dry/Wet only + dark, natural sustain Continue reading “Empress Echosystem Freezification vs. Gamechanger Audio PLUS Pedal”

Empress Tape Delay

Empress tape delayThe Empress Tape Delay is a nearly pedalboard-friendly digital delay. To be precise, this pedal is the light- version of the Empress Superdelay VM (vintage modified), which Empress developed in collaboration with Pro Guitarshop.com. Continue reading “Empress Tape Delay”

Empress Superdelay / Superdelay VM

Empress Superdelay1The Empress Superdelay, as well as the Superdelay VM (Vintage Modified) are both rather moderate pedalboard-friendly, but both versions of this delay offer almost every delay sound, a guitarist needs. Continue reading “Empress Superdelay / Superdelay VM”

Empress Echosystem

Empress EchosystemEvery centimeter, the Empress Echosystem needs on the pedalboard, is worth it. The true bypass pedal offers every kind of sound that delay-lovers can ever imagine. Continue reading “Empress Echosystem”