Mixdown's Pedal Special: Looper, Delay and Modulation

Here at Mixdown, we wholeheartedly believe there's a pedal out there for every guitarist. A stompbox soulmate, if you will. Find your perfect match from the realms of loop, delay and modulation pedals right here. You can thank us later.

Ernie Ball Expression Ambient Delay

Effect: Delay

Expect to Pay: $479

Distributor: CMC Music

Recommended For:

Rock, blues and funk players.

 

Versatility:

The Ambient Delay is incredibly versatile and offers a useful, real world set of colours. The delay time and feedback rate offer everything from tape-style slapback to long, digital tails that are reminiscent of the MXR Carbon Copy without the low end roll off. This works well enough on its own, but take the time to dial in some lush, almost dusty reverb and you’ll find yourself adrift in a sea of warm textures.

 

Usability:

The Expression Series seeks to do the job of two or three pedals at a time with an eye on spatial economy, which is increasingly at a premium for a lot of players. Herein lies the crowning glory of the design. While they might not lay every possible option at your feet, they are doing enough heavy lifting to earn their place on the board.

 

Construction:

The metallic chassis of the pedal is very impressive and sturdy. The reduced size compared to Ernie Ball’s regular volume pedals is also a welcome addition, ensuring the pedal doesn’t take up a lot of real estate on your board.

 

Overall: 

Smooth, unbridled sweeping, clever application of a clever idea, all housed in a snazzy looking casing.

 

By Luke Shields

 

Positive Grid BIAS Delay Twin

Effect: Modulation

Expect To Pay: $399

Distributor: Link Audio

Recommended For:

Players who want an endless soundscape of delay at their feet.

 

Versatility:

I’m pretty damn picky when it comes to delay pedals, so much so that I currently have three different delay pedals on my board. I can happily say that I could replace all three of them with the BIAS Delay Twin. The pedal has every delay sound that I need in one, and they’ve managed to recreate a myriad of classic delay sounds wonderfully.

 

Usability:

It’s really as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. If you just wanted to stick with the nine presets on the pedal, there is already a heap to play around with and tweak. From there, you can deep dive into the BIAS Pedal app and Positive Grid’s ToneCloud to explore any number of tonal possibilities.

 

Construction:

Compact, heavy, and ready to take a beating on the road.

 

Overall:

I’m so impressed by all of the pedals in the BIAS Twin series, but the delay is the one that has really blown me away. It’s so much more than just another modeller. Thanks to the BIAS Pedal app and ToneCloud, you are in total control and can ensure that the BIAS Delay Twin does exactly what you need it to.

By Nicholas Simonsen

 

Positive Grid BIAS Modulation Twin

Effect: Modulation

Expect To Pay: $399

Distributor: Link Audio

Recommended For:

Players who want a one-stop shop when it comes to modulation.

 

Versatility:

It doesn’t get more versatile than this. The BIAS Modulation Twin has everything you could possibly need for vibrant and dreamy effects – chorus, vibrato, tremolo, ring modulation and much more.  With nine factory presets, you have a plethora of effects to play with out of the gate. I was particularly blown away by the ring modulation and rotary presets.

 

Usability:

It’s almost stupid how easy they’ve made it to tweak sounds on the BIAS Modulation Twin. Aside from the preset control, you also have controls for depth, intensity, rate, tweak and a three-way toggle for LFO waveforms. All of that, coupled with the ability to edit your patches with the Bias Pedal app means you literally have endless options when it comes to building effects.

 

Construction:

Weighing in at just under a kilogram, the pedal has a bit of weight to it. The benefit of this is that it feels incredibly tough, which is exactly what you want.

 

Overall:

Why would you spend thousands of dollars on independent chorus, trem, vibrato, ring modulation and rotary pedals when you can have them all in one for a fraction of the price? Talk about bang for your buck.

By Nicholas Simonsen

 

NUX Loop Core Deluxe

Effect: Looper

Expect To Pay: $199

Distributor: Pro Music Australia

 

Recommended For:

Solo performers and musicians looking for a viable songwriting sketchpad and performance tool.

 

Versatility:

Loopers have become an essential asset to the creative process of a wide assortment of musicians today, and with the Loop Core Deluxe, NUX aims to appease them all. Offering 99 banks of storage, eight hours of recording time, unlimited overdubs and 40 drum machine patterns, whether you’re aimlessly noodling in your bedroom or setting up an intricately layered live loop, you’ll be in good hands with the Loop Core Deluxe.

 

Usability:

The NUX Loop Core Deluxe takes a relatively simple approach to looping, with three coloured LEDS and a bright LCD display helping you find your way around the pedal with absolute ease. The inclusion of NUX’s dual footswitch is an extremely welcome addition to the looping experience, and with a bit of practice (and study of the instruction manual), mastering the device will be a breeze.

 

Construction:

Despite its slight size, the Loop Core Deluxe is built like a brick – even the dual footswitch is almost as hefty as the pedal itself, which should give you peace of mind when lugging it about to gigs. While I wasn’t too fond of the stacked design of the rhythm and loop volume knobs, the other buttons onboard the Loop Core Deluxe feel pretty sturdy, and the sparkling gold and silver finish will add a touch of finesse to your rig.

 

Overall:

If you’re on the hunt for a simple yet versatile tool to take your creative ideas to the next level, look no further than the NUX Loop Core Deluxe. Although there’s something for everyone with this one, I’d highly recommend it for budding guitarists looking to make an entry into the exciting world of looping.

 

By Will Brewster

 

Mooer Groove Loop

Effect: Looper

Expect To Pay: $199

Distributor: Jade Australia

Recommended For:

Any and all players.

 

Versatility:

The Groove Loop operates as both a looper and a drum machine, making it incredibly versatile. With eight different drum grooves built into the drum machine, you can jam anything from rock and metal through to reggae and blues.

 

Usability:

The pedal has three different modes: looper only, drum machine only, or the two together. The Groove Loop also has dedicated playback level controls for the looper and drum machine, which is invaluable when layering loops and ideas. The looper itself is simple to use and makes it easy to overdub layers.

 

Construction:

Like all of Mooer’s micro pedals, the Groove Loop’s chassis is sturdy and takes up a tiny footprint on your pedalboard.

 

Overall:

At the end of the day, the Groove Loop is a hell of a lot of bang for your buck. It’s perfect for building on ideas at home, and it’s the ideal pedal for buskers wanting to do the whole one-man-band thing.

By Nicholas Simonsen

 

 

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