Ultimate Pedal Effects Special: Miscellaneous Pedals

The Best Of The Rest

Here at Mixdown we wholeheartedly believe that there’s a pedal out there for every guitarist. A stompbox soul mate, if you will. That’s why we have fought tooth and nail – day in and day out – to put to together the most comprehensive, toe-tingling and tone rich pedal effects special for this month’s issue. From pummelling distortion that leaves you gasping for air, to the purest of sweet delays, our writers have sourced the cream of the crop. So go forth, find your perfect match, and head down to your local distributor.

Cioks Ciokolate 20th Anniversary

EFFECT: MULTI- POWER SUPPLY | RRP: $749 | DISTRIBUTOR: AMBER TECHNOLOGY

RECOMMENDED FOR:

People building or modifying a pedalboard with a range of effects requiring a range of different power sources. Perfect for the heavy effects user with serious power demands.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

It’s very quiet in operation and isolated outputs to keep signal noise down. The Ciokolate is able to deliver both AC and DC power in a range of voltages. Power from 4-24 volts and current draws up to 800 mA are available. There is very little this unit cannot power.

 

USEABILITY:

With a huge range of power options and plenty of patch cables in various lengths and specifications, it is fairly easy to power any combination of pedals no matter what they demand or how they are laid out on your board. Mains power does not require a separate transformer either; it connects with a standard IEC cable.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

The housing itself is a solid brick, deserving of such a unit. All the connections and dip switches are contained in a recessed area under the outer frame so no stray feet can damage them. Even the IEC power connector is recessed to ensure no interference with the units input power ever occurs. It’s a clever design and a well-engineered build.

 

OVERALL:

With so many different options housed in such a compact casing, there is very little that you would find on your pedalboard that this unit couldn’t power.

 

BY ROB GEE

 

Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus

EFFECT TYPE: POWER SUPPLY | RRP: $425 | DISTRIBUTOR: EGM DISTRIBUTION

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Anyone using a multitude of digital and analogue pedals, different pedal voltages, and looking for security and reliability in a power source. This is the power source that takes pedal power seriously.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

It boasts eight isolated outputs with Standard 9V, 12V Boss ACA, high current 9V, Line 6 Modeler, standard 9V with battery sag control, 18V and 24V capability. It’s a one size fits all solution which is what you want in a power supply. The fact that every output is isolated doesn’t simply quash unwanted hum. It also means you’re not sacrificing any tone as it travels between pedal after pedal, the importance of which can’t be overstated.

 

USABILITY:

Plug in and you’re ready to go – depending on the types of pedals you are using. There is an informative manual which we recommend going through thoroughly before getting started. Utilising the flexibility on offer here is, for the most part, a simple exercise.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

The construction of this pedal is dependable and reliable. It’s fairly heavy considering compact build and, simply put, is tough as guts.

 

OVERALL:

With a power supply you want depend-ability, a multitude of options and most importantly, for it to sound clean. The updated Pedal Power 2 Plus is all of these things, and more.

 

BY CHRIS SCOTT

 

Lehle Mono Volume

EFFECT: VOLUME | RRP: $450 | DISTRIBUTOR: EGM DISTRIBUTION

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Anyone who wants the smoothest volume swells imaginable, with a stylish, modern aesthetic.

 

VERSATILITY:

Relative to most other large footprint volume pedals on the market, the Lehle Mono Volume sits somewhere around the mean for features. Having said that though, what more do you want? Set to unity (0db boost) and it is completely uncoloured, input and output stages are perfectly matched for impedance, leaving zero lag or buffer clip. You have the option of dialing in up to +10db of extra signal too, which is a great way to give the power tubes a nudge into blissful break-up.

 

USABILITY:

By far one of the most seamless sweeps I’ve ever ridden with, the adjustable rod inside the base retains the perfect amount of tension for the life of the pedal. Find yourself at the perfect level half way up the arc and it’ll sit there obediently until you come back to charge back to full bore. It’s such a deft hand at its job that it feels like a secret weapon waiting patiently at your feet for the right time to shine.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

Build quality is second to none here; the chassis is solid as a rock without sacrificing even a speck of the sleek, quintessetially German aesthetic of the unit. You can feel the engineering excellence even before slipping it into your signal path.

 

OVERALL:

Volume pedals are the unsung heroes of the tap-dancer’s tool kit, and this one 
in particular feels like a sleek, modern, graduation from its less refined predecessors.

 

BY LUKE SHIELDS

 

Hotone Vow Press

EFFECT: SWITCHABLE VOLUME & WAH PEDAL | RRP: CONTACT FOR PRICING DISTRIBUTOR: NOISE TOYS IMPORTS

RECOMMENDED FOR:

First of all, for all lovers of purple pedals, this is a nifty addition to your collection. But, beyond that, it is an ideal solution for anyone looking for either a volume or wah pedal, or both, when space on the pedalboard is at a premium.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

When it comes to Wah tones, there is one pedal that comes to mind as the all-time classic wah. And it is that tone which Hotone has emulated with the Vow Press, giving that classic vocal weeping to your guitar signal with plenty of sweep in the EQ range. It doesn’t have to be big to get that big sound.

 

USEABILITY:

In the ‘wah’ setting, it acts as a classic wah pedal should. In the volume setting, it retains the signal’s tone at any level due to the active design of the circuit. When engaged in volume/wah mode, you get to use both options, with the bypass switch changing between the two. That is supper handy, as when you disengage the wah mode, it is set to full volume as it should be, but then allows you to pull back on the volume from that point on.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

This is a tough little pedal. Don’t let the purple housing fool you, the Vow Press is ready for you to stand all over it and press its buttons time and time again.

 

OVERALL:

What we have here is a serious space saver. Many guitarists don’t have the space for a volume or a wah pedal on their board, but this unit offers both in much the same amount of space and most overdrive pedals take up.

 

BY ROB GEE

 

Earthquaker Devices Spatial Delivery

EFFECT: VOLTAGE CONTROLLED ENVELOPE FILTER | RRP: $295 | DISTRIBUTOR: GLOBAL VINTAGE

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Funk, experimental, pop and indie and players.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

Coming from the auto wah, envelope filter camp, the Spatial Delivery gets funky pretty easily. Balancing the range, filter and resonance controls – you can get some quacky auto wah. Resonance gives some more ringy type honk whilst the sample and hold toggle setting puts you into Commodore 64 glitch, whizz and whir. Seriously cool for random fits of noise but also controllable for playing actual licks and phrases in time.

 

USABILITY:

As an auto wah you can really get the Spatial Delivery to snap and quack. Good for funk and pop, but you can also head down the experimental road if required too. In terms of the synthy, glitch stuff – I’m impressed that the SD is really useable and quite controllable. Often these types of sample and hold effects can sound impressive and quirky but can also be finicky when you want to really keep them in time. With a bit of work, the SD lets you lock in and can then get crazy too if needed.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

A sturdy and sensible construction, which is exactly what we’ve come to expect from all EQD products. Thumbs up here.

 

OVERALL:

Filtered, wah type glitch sweep and oscillation sounds, the Spatial Delivery (cool name by the way) will give you a range of usable tones. Good for funk (and even electro, dance, pop and the like) or more experimental styles the SD covers you for envelope filtering with some extras thrown in.

 

BY NICK BROWN

 

Mooer Ge100 Guitar Multi-Effects Processor

EFFECT: MULTI-EFFECTS PROCESSOR | RRP: $169.95 | DISTRIBUTOR: JADE AUSTRALIA

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Beginner and intermediate guitarists. The user-friendly multi-effect system will suit players looking to improve their technique, and expand their sound.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

From ‘Jazz Clean’, to ‘Pantera Metal’, and ‘Octave Fuzz’, the 80 factory preset patches cover the essential sounds and most commonly used effects. Vintage overdrives are full-bodied and multi-dimensional, while brighter cleans remain verdant and play smoothly. For the most part it defines the multi-effects trap of sounding overly computerised and synthetic.

 

USABILITY:

A major drawcard is this pedal’s simplicity. All of the central information is outlined on a high brightness LCD display. Engaging key features such as the loop function or learning a new scale/chord structure are each initiated by their own button. The 80 user patches endear you to be creative and experiment with sounds. Nifty features, like activating the tuner by pressing down both foot switches, are icing on the cake.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

This is one of the smaller multi-effects pedals I’ve seen. So small, in fact, that
 it takes a little getting used to. The foot switches are sturdy and the expression pedal grips. Just be careful not to step
on the LCD display when changing sounds.

 

OVERALL:

Between a plethora of unique patches, the loop function, drum machine and guitar lessons, this is a pedal that promises to enhance your guitar technique, diversify your playing style and give you a greater appreciation of tone. Ticks all the boxes for the guitarist still learning their craft.

 

BY CHRIS SCOTT

 

PEDALpUNK!

EFFECT: PEDAL EFFECTS LOOP FOR RECORDING | RRP: CONTACT FOR PRICING | DISTRIBUTOR: NOISE TOYS IMPORTS

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Anyone who is recording guitars and bass through their DAW, into a computer, and is keen to use pedals effects is going to love what this can do for them. Essentially, every home and professional studio that is tracking or mixing guitar should have one of these handy.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

The PEDALpUNK! offers perfectly matched output impedance and return input impedance for your computer recording setup to allow pedals to be inserted into the signal chain. What this means is that you can now have a ‘reamping’ option in your digital recording setup purely for adding pedal effects to your already recoded guitar and bass tracks.

 

USEABILITY:

Connection from your interface to your pedals and back again is fairly simple. Once the pedals are in the signal chain, you can drive the signal into them as needed and then balance the output volume back to an appropriate level to rerecord. The focus control gives you the ability to add a buffering process to retain signal through longer chains.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

These pedals have that boutique, hand-made vibe about them. They are meticulously constructed and finished to ensure that each unit delivers the quality that you need in such an important stage in your signal chain.

 

OVERALL:

This may just be the missing link in so many recording setups. In fact, many musicians and engineers would have been searching for a solution like this and never really have had a simple option for matching the impedance for your pedals. That is, until now, as the PEDALpUNK! delivers the pedal side-chain your recorded guitar signal has been crying out for.

 

BY ROB GEE

 

Xtomp

EFFECT: BLUETOOTH MULTI-STOMP BOX | RRP: CONTACT FOR PRICING DISTRIBUTOR: NOISE TOYS IMPORTS

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Everyone using a guitar or bass looking for different pedal effects. Basically, this could and would work with all guitarists’ rigs, offering a vast array of effects with a continually growing library of models to choose from and import into your Xtomp.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

The Xtomp offers you an almost unlimited supply of effects and sounds to add to your pedal chain. Classic effects that
you may not have access to can now be downloaded and added to the Xtomp to give you the creativity you need in your guitar tone.

 

USEABILITY:

Bluetooth connectivity allows the
 Xtomp to talk with your device and load effects from your library. Initial loading of any effect takes one to two minutes depending on the complexity of the patch. After that, reloading said effect is super quick and easy to recall. Then, the six potentiometers allow a wide range of control specific to each effect.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

This low-lying pedal is built into a really tough casing that reminds me somewhat of some higher end audio interfaces. The pots are smooth and easy to operate and the engagement switch will happily take any pressure you apply with your foot. Stereo inputs and outputs are also supplied for use in a wide range of applications.

 

OVERALL:

This clever little device puts just about any effect you want onto your pedalboard. It’s not like a complex multi-effects board that requires flipping through menus to program, it just offers all the control of any given stomp box on designated pots with visual representation through the app on your chosen device. Best of all, it is only going to improve with new updates and effects.

 

BY ROB GEE

 

TC Electronic Ditto X4 Looper

EFFECT: LOOPER | RRP: CONTACT FOR PRICING | DISTRIBUTOR: AMBER TECHNOLOGY

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Guitarists who want to get creative with their compositions or for those genres that conventionally utilise looping. Teachers will also get a kick out of this – it’s great for practising.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

It builds on the same easy use and high audio quality of the original pedals with two loop tracks, two loop modes, seven effects, a loop decay feature, MIDI sync/CC, loop import/export and stereo ins and outs. The MIDI control on a unit this flexible is great news for those who like to use more intricate guitar rigs. Tape stop is a really cool effect you can use for all sorts of dramatic musical transitions, while double and hold is especially great for building dramatic tension before crashing in with the next section.

 

USABILITY:

There are foot switches for Loop 1 and Loop 2 plus a stop switch (hold it down to erase your previous loops), an FX switch, and each loop has up to five minutes of looping time. Intuitive functionality makes it easy to expand your creative potential.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

Around the back you’ll find the stereo inputs and outputs, USB jack, MIDI jacks and a mode DIP switch with four adjustments. The entire unit is built with regular use in mind.

 

OVERALL:

TC Electronic’s Ditto series of loopers are among the best you’ll ever find. This is a very creative, inspiring pedal, which goes as far out as you want to take it, but can also behave in very practical, conventional ways.

 

BY LUKE SHIELDS

 

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