Grouptest: Re­verb ped­als

There was a time when re­verb ped­als were the poor cousins to stu­dio-based units. How­ever, in re­cent years a host of pow­er­ful ped­als have re­de­fined this – and many add in­ter­est­ing pitch, mod­u­la­tion or de­lay sec­tions to the al­go­rithms

Future Music - - CONTENTS -

1To start off, let’s take a look at a mono-only pedal in the form of Wal­rus Au­dio’s Fathom. All pa­ram­e­ter edit­ing here is un­der­taken di­rectly from the five front-panel knobs and tog­gle switch, which keeps things fairly straight­for­ward. There are four al­go­rithms here – Hall, Plate, Lo-fi and Sonar – each with ad­justable decay, mix, bright­ness, and three lev­els of mod­u­la­tion. Press­ing the built-in sus­tain footswitch ex­tends the decay time to max­i­mum (so not so much ‘sus­tain’ as ‘ex­tend’). The Lo-fi pro­gramme adds fil­ter­ing, whilst the Sonar pitch com­bines a low and high pitchshift. The ‘X’ knob ad­justs pre-de­lay, fil­ter width or high/low pitch blend. wal­ VER­DICT 8.7

2This sec­ond in­car­na­tion of TC Elec­tronic’s sturdy Hall of Fame re­verb pedal adds a shim­mer al­go­rithm, which pitches the re­verb up an oc­tave on each feed­back loop for an ethe­real ef­fect. It adds TC’s MASH tech­nol­ogy too, adding a pres­sure-sen­si­tive ex­pres­sion pedal/switch, all of which beefs-up an al­ready im­pres­sive fea­ture set. This pedal in­cludes full stereo in/out. It’s also ca­pa­ble of patch-saving via three ‘TonePrints’ and in-depth edit­ing (via USB, us­ing the TonePrint Edi­tor soft­ware). The pedal can also eas­ily ac­com­mo­date synth level sig­nals, which adds to its range. Al­though the re­verbs are strong, they are not quite as lengthy or lush as those that have been de­signed specif­i­cally with am­bi­ent mu­sic in mind. That aside, there’s no doubt you’ll be get­ting an aw­ful lot of bang-for-your-buck here. tc­elec­ VER­DICT 8.9

3Mad Pro­fes­sor’s Kos­mos pedal is well and truly geared up for the dreamier end of the re­verb spec­trum. There are 11 pro­grams on of­fer in to­tal, which di­vide up into Plate, Room, Spring, Hall, Shim­mer, Swell and Room+De­lay treat­ments. An­other mono unit, the Kos­mos pro­vides ad­di­tional edit­ing be­yond the stan­dard level, tone and time pa­ram­e­ters via the Con­trol knob (though on half of the pro­grammes this will ad­just the au­to­matic ef­fect level duck­ing). Us­ing the footswitch can ex­tend the re­verb up to an (al­most) frozen state. The re­verbs on of­fer here are strong, though the unit is al­most cer­tainly geared more heav­ily to­wards gui­tar us­age than synth or stu­dio ap­pli­ca­tions. VER­DICT 8.5

4Elec­tro-Har­monix have been play­ers in the pedal game for longer than most, and their cur­rent range of ped­als is un­de­ni­ably huge – tak­ing in ev­ery­thing from ana­logue clas­sics to all sorts of newer dig­i­tal units like this, the Oceans 11. Right from the very start, it is clear that this pedal has been pri­mar­ily aimed at the gui­tarist who re­quires a wide range of re­verb styles – from con­ven­tional through to mo­du­lated, re­verse and shim­mer types. Al­though in­put and out­put is strictly mono in this case – which acts to limit the scope for cre­at­ing wide sound­scapes – the mode switch and pair of pa­ram­e­ter knobs pro­vide a de­cent level of con­trol, with se­condary edit pa­ram­e­ters avail­able to you if you find that you need to do any ad­di­tional tweak­ing of the sound. VER­DICT 8.5

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