In 2008 I met Jim Marshall at the Musikmesse Frankfurt in Germany. His amps changed the musical world and I guess all of you know and love the Marshall amps. But these days, people wonder who is the face behind the legendary amplifiers. Thus, I would like to present the “7-questions-to-interview” with Luke Green. Working as product director, he is one of the guys behind the absolute magnificent Marshall Amps. Continue reading “7 questions to Luke Green (Marshall Amps)”
The Maxon AD-900 is definitively not a pedalboard-friendly delay. But this analog wonder does not need to be space-saving. It offers up to 600ms of maximum delay time. At the time of its construction, an absolutely phenomenal duration. Continue reading “Maxon AD-900”
This is a demo about the Hughes & Kettner Replex. It is huge and heavy, but it glows in the dark and has a tube! The production has been stopped, but still it is a great tape emulation. Tube preamp, reverb pedal and a single and dual-head delay in one enclosure. Nevermind the space it needs on your pedalboard…
This is a comparison of the Neunaber Expanse with the Source Audio Nemesis. The Neuaber Expanse is quite more than a reverb. Thus, I compare different settings of both pedals like tape and digital. But also modes like scatter (Expanse) versus rhythmic (Nemesis) and echelon stock (Expanse) versus digital mode (Nemesis). Last but not least, you will get a demo of how both pedals sound in the mix.
The Korg Volcas are pretty flexible devices that received a little firmware-update last year. But there are also unofficial firmware versions for the Volca FM and the Volca Sample, which I have tested as well.
Similar to the installation of the official updates, the update mode must be activated while the Korg Volca is started. Therefore, you have to keep the buttons Func and Play pressed while you switch the Volca on. Now, you can connect the sync-in jack of the Volca with the audio-out of the computer. The volume of the computer ought to be quite loud, but not maxed. I mostly use a level of 80%. By using an adequate media plays, the firmware can be played back as an audio file via the computer. In this case, it is important to deactivate all further sounds (like emailbox or likewise). Otherwise, you will get an error message. After the update is finished, the Volca needs a re-start.
Volca FM 1.09
For the velocity function is a decisive characteristic of inspiring FM sounds, a FM synth actually is supposed to provide such a feature. Unfortunately, Korg has not implemented this feature by now. Alternatively, you could complement this function for external keyboards via using a specific Retrokits RK-002 midi cable. The unofficial Firmware 1.09 add the velocity function to the Volca. The keys of the internal keyboard do not send velocity information, but by connecting an external keyboard, the respective data can be sent to the FM.
Another interesting feature is the patch changes note on/off. While it is deactivated, a played tone can be sustained, even though you select another sound. Until now, the sound has been stopped in this case. Now, a fluent transition between different sounds is possible.
Besides, there have been new control change orders added. For example, the free assignment of the mod wheel, various chorus settings, the loading of patches and pattern as well as subdivisions of the tempo.
The firmware runs quite reliably. Only some posts on the internet revolve around the problem, that the Volca switches itself of with this firmware. The reason is a flat battery or the power supply does not provide enough current. The FM needs more than 100mA to work reliable. The unofficial firmware might need a little more current; thus, you should keep the capacity of your power supply in mind.
All of these new features can be deactivated in the global menu. Ant those, who don’t like the firmware anyway, can downgrade the Volca to the official firmware easily. The Korg Volca support website offers a free download of this file.
Volca Sample Beta 7
Regarding the Volca Sample, the process of the installation of the Beta 7 firmware update is identical. You can replay all samples chromatically as well as using the “sequencer channel” to select all of the 10 sounds via the midi keyboard. As with the Volca FM, you can also activate velocity. It can be selected just like pitch and note triggering via part or pattern.
New control changes for reverb, mutes, pattern-changes, reverse and so on have been implemented. Besides, there are also to new reverb algorithms. Many of these new parameters can be changed directly in the live mode. It is not necessary to enter the global setup and re-start the device. By keeping the func button pressed, you can select a respective function through the sample pot.
Another interesting feature is the SAMP. It assigns 100 samples to the midi keyboard. Thereby, you can use all samples at the same time or rather program them via midi. Thus, the Sample becomes a fully adequate sampler. Of course, you can play polyphonic samples as well. Similar to the Digitakt, you can adjust the probabilities of a trigger. The standard setting is set to 100%. By reducing the probability, each pattern becomes a diversified part of the song.
Last but not least, there is the drone mode. It allows to set the decay of all samples to the maximum and thereby enables you to create some kind of infinite mode while you are looping. This unofficial Beta 7 firmware runs stable and reliable. Because of the numerous features, I really recommend this type of firmware. And it also applies in this case: if you don’t like the new firmware, you can go back too the official Korg firmware easily and for free.
The name reflects the aim: The Malekko EKKO 616 MKII Dark: this is the dark version of the Malekko EKKO 616 MKII. The pedalboard-friendly analog delay offers up to 650ms of maximum delay time and enables its user to choose between true bypass and buffer. Continue reading “Malekko EKKO 616 MKII Dark”
This is a comparison of the Electro Harmonix Deluxe Memory Man with the DOD Rubberneck. Find out mor about the sonic possibilities like brighter and darker repeats, modulation and the sound of these two analog delays in the mix.
Today, almost every musician records his/her music at home. Mostly via a soundcard directly into a DAW. There, you will find numerous VST effects to create a sophisticated sound. But many effect pedals as well are also suitable for recording. Continue reading “Effect pedals for recording”
In this video, I used the Neunaber Expanse as a delay. Most people use it as a reverb effect, but through the Neunaber App you can also download several delay algorithms. The additional EXP Controller allows to choose between up to four different presets. For it is stereo, please use your headphones!
A long time ago, there was the Korg SDD-3000 rack delay with its legendary sound. Some years ago, the also less pedalboard-friendly version of this classic has been put on the market. Continue reading “Korg SDD-3000 Pedal”
In the first part of this series, I presented some budget tube combos. In the second part, I started a small overview of several heads. And finally, I would like to end up this series with some last recommendations. Continue reading “Lunchbox Tube Amps Part III”
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