Fender Music Australia | RRP: $299
Key Features: As if Fender weren’t doing enough for guitar and bass players with their recent American ranges such as Ultra and Professional II, Fender has been chipping away at building an increasingly comprehensive range of pedals.
From drives to delays and compression and modulation, Fender have dipped their toes into the world of pedals with, unsurprisingly, stellar results. Today we’re discussing the Bubbler Chorus Pedal, a robust, brushed steel enclosure in a sea-foam coloured finish with two switches, one toggle and six knobs to tweak your way into modulation Heaven.
The Bubbler is all-analogue and features the same bright knob LEDs that the rest of the range does, so you can easily see what you’re doing on a dark stage. There’s a mono input and stereo output for multiple amps, and the Bubbler can retain two settings at once.
Mixdown Says: In use, the Bubbler features fairly standard controls such as Rate, Depth and Level. The Bubbler, however, also features a sine/triangle wave toggle to switch between the sounds that the Bubbler is blending in and out of your dry signal.
The Sine setting offers a comfortable shimmer, warm harmonics and nicely blended chorus for a clean sound. The Triangle offers something harsher in a really pleasant way, subtlety adding some drive and grit to your sound, making it much more useful for high gain. Chorus can sometimes soften a big rock sound, but the Bubbler gives you the option.
As if this wasn’t enough to close the sale, the Bubbler features duplicated Rate and Depth controls that can be toggled on and off with the Slow/Fast switch. This effectively makes the Bubbler two pedals in one, offering you two different chorus sounds at the push of a button.
From input to outputs, the Bubbler is a no-brainer, even for those of us who already own a chorus. Signal comes in, and is routed through two choruses that are switchable with the Slow/Fast switch. There’s a Bypass to turn the whole unit on or off, and a Level control to adjust the master output of the unit.
The Bubbler Chorus also features a Sensitivity dial to engage the pedal’s dynamic response modulation feature, that can push and pull the modulation depending how hard you play into the pedal. Once you’ve dialled in your tone, you can send the sound out of the stereo output and into multiple amps that can modulate even further in their own subtle way.
Overall: Most of us didn’t think the Chorus needed to be re-invented, but most of us aren’t Fender. Chorus is one of the most widely used effects on the planet, and the Bubbler Chorus Pedal manages to re-invigorate the sound.
Fender’s dynamic response modulation lets you effect your chorus on the fly, and the Triangle/Sine wave toggle allows a more cohesive and refined sound. Their intuitive and player-focused design brings us the Slow/Fast switch, as well as the switchable LED lights on the knobs, with a stereo output option if you ever need it!
Pay attention to Fender’s growing pedal range, because they’re paying attention to you.
For specs and more, check out Fender’s website.