Should I get the Strymon Volante or the El Capistan?

Ask the DudeA reader’s question to the Dude:

“I am torn between the Strymon Volante and the El Capistan.
I have seen your video a million times and am still not sure. I like the rhythmic possibilities you can get with the Volante, the rec level knob which can add some dirt to the repeats, the 3 delay types and the 4s max delay time.
But I am tempted with the warm sound, and the simplicity of the El Capistan.
I want the unit as a main delay (currently have a Boss DD7 which will stay on the pedalboard as a second delay).
Do you think it is worth it to lose that extra warmth for all that pros of the Volante?
Currently, I am playing a Les Paul through a Bugera 5W tube amp.
I mostly play ambient and progressive to blues rock (Huge Pink Floyd fan).
Also, if you have the time, what is your favorite (or favorites) delay pedal(s) and why?”

DelayDude:

Thanks a lot for your email! On my pedalboard, the El Capistan was a permanent pedal for a long time. But now, the Volante has replaced it. Personally, I think, the handling is much easier because it has no secondary functions like the El Capistan. Every pot has its own function and can be tuned without difficulty.
And as you already mentioned, the rhythmical repeats of the switchable, virtual tone heads offer endless possibilities.

Of course, the El Capistan also offers two different rhythm modes as well, but they do by far not reach those of the Volante. Not only activating certain tone heads, but also the option “full/half volume” of the tone heads produces completely different emphases of the repeats.
Rec Level provides Gain and thereby is able to make some low gain overdrive pedals superfluous.

Sonically, the three types of delays vary a lot and frequently, people forget, that the sound additionally can be altered by the half, normal or double speed setting of the tape.
Using the tape setting on half speed and a slightly turned down wear pot (which reduces the treble), you will get close to the sound of the El Capistan.

With your Les Paul and its Humbuckers in combination with the Volante, you ought to create a really, really nice sound. Especially because of the fact that you are a Pink Floyd fan, the Volante (with its Drum sounds) is perfect for you.

My two favorite delays which are both on my pedalboard are in fact the Volante – amongst many other things because of the external tap and midi- input (this is why I might be a bit biased) and the Empress Echosystem which I use for reverse, pitch and digital sounds.

Strymon delay comparison: Volante vs. El Capistan

This is a comparison of the brilliant Strymon delays.
Find out more about the sound of a new tape emulation, a dark, old and wobbling tape, a multi head disc style stetting and how the Volante and the El Capistan might sound in the mix.

0:09 new tape Continue reading “Strymon delay comparison: Volante vs. El Capistan”

Review: Strymon Volante part 1

Strymon VolanteSince the El Capistan, Strymon is famous for their tape sounds and the Volante offers wow and flutter, tape speeds and tape saturation of the highest quality.
The studio mode provides quasi the hi-fi version of a tape sound. Continue reading “Review: Strymon Volante part 1”

Review: Strymon Volante part 1

Strymon VolanteThe Italian as well as the Spanish word “Volante“ means wheel or travelling/flying.
I think, it refers to the magnetic disc of a Binson Echorec, for the Strymon Volante emulates its sounds (as well as further tape echo sounds) in a very special way. Continue reading “Review: Strymon Volante part 1”

+++ NAMM 2019 News Part 1 +++

NewsBefore the NAMM 2019 opens the doors for guitar geeks from all over the world, the first information about new pedals, amps and instruments are announced. Here I would like to present a small selection of interesting news: Continue reading “+++ NAMM 2019 News Part 1 +++”

Effect History: Multi Digital Delays (Part 2)

Effect PedalThe next generation

The first part of this series was about the Boss DD-20 and the Line6 DL4.
Both pedals have been the standard for a long time and still they are pretty popular.
But they have been replaced by technically extensive pedals of the next generation. Continue reading “Effect History: Multi Digital Delays (Part 2)”

Delay Blind Comparison: Strymon El Capistan vs. Fulltone Tube Tape Echo

This is a blind comparison of the Strymon El Capistan with the Fulltone Tube Tape Echo.

Clarification:

Continue reading “Delay Blind Comparison: Strymon El Capistan vs. Fulltone Tube Tape Echo”

Effect history (Part 2): The 60s – transistor pedals

Effect PedalThe new transistor-technique

The first fuzz-pedals have been invented in the early 60s. One of the first pedals using the new transistor-technique was the Maestro Fuzz Tone Pedal which became famous by the Song “Satisfaction” of the Rolling Stones. Continue reading “Effect history (Part 2): The 60s – transistor pedals”