Category Archives: Effects Features

How to Chain Your Effect Pedals – A Basic Primer

We’d like to introduce and welcome a guest blog from Natalie over at MusicalAdvisors.com. She has some tips to offer for those interested in using guitar effects. Consider these a good starting point for readers looking for introductory advice – DS

Guitar effect pedals are an excellent way to take your music to the next level by adding texture, volume, resonance, or modulation effects. The best guitarists in history, such as Hendrix and Van Halen, have made effect pedals a staple for all rock styles of music. As a musician myself, I’ve learned the ideal way to organize my pedals on a pedalboard through years of trial and error. If you’re looking to create a pedal chain to make your music more complex, there are a few basic principles you can follow to optimize your sound.
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Modified Classic Overdrive/Distortion Units Reborn from Analogman, Keeley, and TWA

Not every overdrive or distortion pedal has a pedigree that begins with the influence from a Tube Screamer. Many of today’s designers look to other classics to either modify or create their own variations. Today we’ll spend time with the Analogman DS-1 Pro Mod with midrange control, Keeley’s Super Phat Mod Full Range Overdrive and the Totally Wycked Audio (TWA) Hot Sake. Each has its own unique story and tone so join us as we explore them further.
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George Lynch’s 1973 EP-3 Echoplex Tape Echo Previously Owned by Eddie Van Halen

frontevhechoplexI wanted to share an interesting story and historical piece for you, our dear readers. First some background on the Echoplex tape echo. If you haven’t played through an Echoplex, they are truly legendary tape echo units and should be experienced. In the 1960s and 1970s, when you wanted echo, tape echo was the way to do it. When smaller solid state echo pedals emerged during the mid ‘70s using Bucket Brigade Device (BBD) technology, they were convenient, but lacked the ability to produce long repeat times versus what a tape delay could offer (most analog solid state delay pedals were limited to just 300ms. of delay time). They also sounded different.
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Klon Centaur vs. Klon KTR

KlonCentaurKTR2When the original Klon Centaur professional overdrive was released in 1994, it was one of the very first boutique overdrive pedals on the market created for the player interested in fine-tuning their tone. Boutique in every sense of the word and hand built by its creator Bill Finnegan, each Klon Centaur was carefully crafted with premium and carefully selected parts. As other boutique pedal makers developed products throughout the decade and focused on expansion with other models, Finnegan stuck with the Klon Centaur as his sole focus.
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Last Boutique Builder Standing: Richard Coibion of Monsterpiece Fuzz

Richard Coibion was hit by the effects building bug back in 2001. With a background Monstervariousand education in electronics engineering and having a steady career in IT, Coibion dabbled in modifying fuzz circuits and tuned them to his liking. He hadn’t ever considered making a career out of building effects however.
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Reverb Pedal Buying Guide for Various Applications

Deciding which effects pedals are right for you can get pretty tough. There are a lot of great options out there, and, let’s face it, it’s hard not to feel like you want them all. Unfortunately, our rockstar aspirations rarely jive with our less-than-rockstar budgets. So we’re forced to choose between various pedals. If you are currently trying to decide on the right reverb pedal for your board, we’ve got some advice to help out. Today we’ll be looking at a few fantastic reverb pedals and discussing which applications each of them is best suited for.
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Fuzz Feast Part 2 – An Assortment of Today’s Fuzzes

In part one, we spent some time with some vintage fuzz classics. Now let’s move forward in time and take a look at some Fuzzes that are currently on the market (with the exception of one which we’ll get to).

Fuzz, more than any other effect, really comes down to personal preferences. As a result, there is no judgment here with regards to what is the “better” fuzz unit – Just sonic descriptions and details that can help you make some choices depending on the direction that you’d like to go with your fuzz tones.

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Fuzz Feast Part 1 – An Examination of Vintage Fuzz Boxes

I have a confession. As a guitarist for well over 25 years, I had always been an “anti-fuzz” person. In fact, I can honestly say I hated and despised the sound of fuzzes that I had heard. I couldn’t understand the point of purposefully making a guitar sound as atrocious and “lo-fi” as possible in mind. A fuzz tone after all, sounded nothing like an electric guitar should.

During this period of time, my search for the epitome of rock tone had to do with capturing rock guitar tones from the likes of players like Angus Young of AC/DC and of course Edward Van Halen. In my mind, any tone that deviated from those was simply bad tone, or at best, “sub-par.”
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What Kind of Delay Pedal Should I Buy?

When shopping for delay boxes, it seems that there are many more different options today than ever before. The vintage market is still booming, and prices of basic analog delay boxes reflect this trend with skyrocketing prices. But are the old analog delays worth the hype? Counter that trend with digital delays, the very cool must-have tools back in the ‘80s. Nowadays, digital delays in the used market can be found at true bargain prices. But what about this talk about them being sterile and lifeless?
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A/DA Flanger

I loved the sound of the flanger from the first time I heard it used on recordings. I thought the jet-sweeping flanging sound used on recorded drums was simply awesome. Then I listened to Eddie Van Halen’s guitar on “Unchained” and thought it was cool having the up and down sweeps of the flanger move along in time with the dropped D pedal tone riff. After hearing that, I just had to have one for myself.
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