The Pedal File: Yay Pedal News!

Hey there!  I realize you may not spend your time scouring the web for new pedals to feed your horrible pedal addiction, which is why The Pedal File is at your service.  It’s been  a minute and I’ve been seeing blurbs here and there about various new pedals that are getting me all bothered and excited!  I thought I’d share this stuff with you so you can also be excited and feel ahead of the curve and like you’re better than others (because you so are just for reading my site right now!).

Earthquaker Devices Palisades

Earthquaker Devices Palisades

I saw some forum posts about this new overdrive/distortion from the folks at Earthquaker.  Apparently some goober was touring the shop, took a pic of this unreleased pedal, and thought it was cool to post on Tumblr or something, which of course spread through the pedal community faster than Ricky Martin’s butt cheeks in front of a mariachi band.  No big deal, right?  Honestly, not a huge deal, but he probably should’ve asked if it was cool beforehand as it seems Earthquaker was scrambling to stop the wild speculation of what type of pedal it was and let it be known this was no hoax.  But now, ToneReport has the scoop that this baby is a indeed a distortion device, featuring parameters that seem to combine distortioning, EQing, and buffering.

(***Pedal File Editor’s Note:  Premier Guitar printed a press release from Earthquaker claiming the Palisades is basically a TS808 Tubescreamer with all the bells, whistles, mods, curves, and angles you could possibly want on the TS808 circuit.  Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the Tubescreamer, but I’m still excited because do you know what I’m a big fan of?  VERSATILITY!)

My favorite tweakables are:
-the ability to toggle between two different gain settings (via Gain A/B knobs & a stomp switch)
-you have some control over the bandwidth frequency going into the pedal with a rotary switch.  There are actually 5 total frequencies to select, so you have a lot of tone options there.  Kind of like a frequency knob on a distortion pedal (think the Rat here).
-another rotary switch selects how you want to ‘clip’ the signal or in other words – how do you want to distort the signal?  The Palisades offers 6 ways to do so:

Diode life (no clipping): not sure what this means.  I’m guessing you can use this setting more as a clean boost or for tone shaping?
LED:  more of a low-gain, edge-of-breakup sound
MOSFET: higher gain
Asymmetrical Silicon: clips the waveform unevenly or asymmetrically providing more compression/clarity.
Full silicon: I assume this is symmetrical clipping meaning it clips the positive and negative cycle of a waveform evenly giving the effect of more distortion (as opposed to asymmetrical clipping)
Schottkey diode clipping: I’ve never heard of this diode before.  After some research it looks like people traditionally put them directly in their guitar with a way to switch them on for more gain.  I like the idea of using something in a way it was not intended.  The description of the way they sound makes me think this has a ‘germanium’ texture to it.

This is apparently what happens when a man like Jamie Stillman gets to be alone all day with electronics.  If you need to replace your whole collection of overdrives with one pedal, this one could and should be it.

For some more info/pics check out the most recent ToneReport.

 

Wampler Latitude Deluxe Tremolo

Wampler Latitude Tremolo

I’m a big fan of Wampler pedals.  They are solid, versatile, and sound great.  So naturally I’m excited for their new deluxe tremolo.  The Latitude, much like the Palisades, is a knob-tweaker’s dream.  Most tremolos these days are suited for either a vintage or modern sound and feature about 2 or 3 knobs (yawn!).  Empress and a few others make very nice and tweakable trems but they’re awful expensive and big.  Wampler has proven again that they really can compete in the pedal trade by jamming so many cool features into such little enclosures (You get controls more recognizble on a delay pedal for instance, like tap tempo and four selectable time subdivisions).  Brian Wampler is stepping up his game, yo!

My favorite tweakables are:
– the wave form selector.  Select from square, bell, or sine waves for different trem flavors.  Get some vintage amp tremolo or modern helicopter (judo) chop.
-the spacing knob.  Increases the space between volume bursts or ‘throbs’ or ‘pulsations’.  It controls the amount of ‘dead space’ while you play.
-the attack knob.  Adjust from punchy all the way to rolled off attack.  Possibly can do volume swells.  Sweet!  With these three controls alone you can do much more than the average tremolo.

The Latitude has no price listed until the official release (May 29th) but I’d imagine this one falls around the $200 mark.  If you’re in the market for a new tremolo I just found it for you.

Check out Wampler’s site for more info.

That’s my update for you, I hope you feel that much more informed.  Stay tuned for some cool new things coming soon the the site!

Thanks for reading.

Love,

Nick
The Pedal File

Welcome to The Pedal File’s New Home!!

IMG_2957

My current pedalboard set up

Hey there, how’s it going?  You’re looking nice today.

I’d like to welcome you to the new official home of The Pedal File.  This will now be the place where I can talk about pedals and whatever the hell else I feel like…mostly pedals though.  New features of my blog include a gallery where I’ll post photos of my pedalboard(s), new pedal acquistions, trips to cool guitar shops, and other pedal-related antics.  I also added a video/sound gallery for my pedal demos and where you can listen to my music.

This site is a work in progress so please comment and let me know what you think.  Please also let me know if there’s a pedal you’d like to see demonstrated in a future post.

Oh, and if you’re here because you think this is a page about bicycles, get a real hobby, like playing with effects pedals!!!

I’m just kidding, bikes are cool too.  Pedals are cooler though.  Just sayin’.

Pedal Power!

Love,

Nick
The Pedal File

Visual Sound Dual Tap Delay Vs. Earthquaker Devices Disaster Transport SR

Dec. 6th, 2013

Recently my wife and I attended a Reverend Guitars/Earthquaker Devices Q&A session at Guitar Riot where she won a Disaster Transport SR through their giveaway raffle.  (You should totally check out Guitar Riot if you live in or near NE Ohio.  Thanks again to them and EQD!!)  We of course were excited and began exploring it’s knobs about a week or so ago.  I thought it’d be cool to compare the Disaster Transport SR and Visual Sound Dual Tap Delay.   Check out the video.

Visual Sound Dual Tap Delay

vsdt

It’s sound is clean and crisp, the controls are simple and nicely laid out, and every part seems to be high quality – like you could forget it was on a chair and your fat ass could come crashing down on it and not even a knob would snap off.  Anyway the Dual Tap Delay is a great hi-fi delay that is still able to get weird with analog-type self-oscillation, rhythmic stutter delays, and time-warp effects.  Visual Sound makes a point that this pedal is made to be intuitive without the need to read the manual.  Read it anyway, it’s short, explains everything well, and has cool suggested settings to get you started.

If you like to run stereo and/or have the amps to do so, this pedal will sound amazing and with two separate delay channels with the option to make one channel dry or effected.  It’s also great just using it for reverb or chorus, and it sounds awesome on vocals.  Delay A has a modulation knob for adding a really nice chorus to the effect, from subtle to vibe-like.  Both delays feature the ability to switch to manual control of the delay time if you like, and they sound really cool if you turn the knobs while a signal is repeating to create a warping effect.  Both also feature time division knobs that are set by the tap tempo button.  There are at least 16 ways to combine these divisions for sweet ass syncopated rhythms.  The Dual Tap has a really pleasant, warm sound with crystal overtones that will make your guitar shimmer like fairy dust without being too brittle (unless your tone is all treble and sucks to begin with).  It works well with distortion (not as well with fuzz or buckets of gain).  I’ve gigged and recorded with this pedal for a while though and it’s solid.

Tweakables:
stereo output – internal switch to make 2nd output effected or dry
tap tempo button – 4 different time divisions in tap mode [quarter note, eighth note, dotted eighth, & triplet] on both channels
modulation – adds a watery chorus, ever so gentle vibe-y-ness to the repeats (only on 2nd channel)
trails – internal switch to turn this feature on/off
tone knob – like the tone knob on your guitar, but for the repeats
repeats knob – number of repeats
level knob
-also has an external input for tap tempo control

(Extra point to Visual Sound for designing custom metal soft-switch buttons that make the pedal super easy to turn on/off and are really really sturdy.  You don’t have to stomp them very hard at all, but this pedal has some weird desires and doesn’t mind the abuse.   I like to wear stilettos when I play mine.)

www.visualsound.net


Earthquaker Devices Disaster Transport SR


dtsr

Despite having only owned this pedal a short time, it quickly has become apparent how awesome and amazing it truly is.  This delay is more lo-fi sounding, and it genuinely recreates the warmness and drifty nuance of a real tape delay.  The controls are also nicely laid out (check out the manual as I’m pretty sure this is one of the only pedals in EQD’s line that includes one.  ‘Nuff said).  I wouldn’t recommend sitting your fat ass on this one as it’s a little lighter on materials.  Not to say it’s not durable or well-built because it is.  This pedal can handle abuse, just most likely not more abuse than an innocent pedal should usually receive.

The ‘Senior’ as I like to call it, or ‘Seniorita’ when I’m drunk, is great at making you sound like a wall (of sound) or like you’re way out on the edge of the universe listening to space sounds bounce off the edge (of the universe) and back into space while they swirl around planets and trail after comets and whatnot…  It can sound like an Echoplex, but with more character in my opinion.  The DT SR creates atmosphere that can put you in an instant trance.   Whether you want to play complex riffs with added dimension that inspires or be a noisey noisemaker and control peoples’ minds, these knobs can do it.

Again you can use the delays separately or together.  Delay A has a really nice phaser/flange-type modulation at low settings and an almost pitch shift/ring modulator sound at high settings of the Depth and Rate knobs.  Delay B has a sensitive Reverb knob that goes from none to a generous amount.  Mix the two together for deeply satisfying washes of atmosphere.  Standout features of this pedal are the bleed knob, the expression pedal inputs for it, and the repeats knob.  First, the bleed knob allows the two delays to run in parallel mode (two separate delays) or series/parallel mode (delay A feeding into delay B).  Its like Delay B is delaying the delay from Delay A.  And adding reverb.  Got it?  Good, stupid!  This allows for all sorts of combinations and trippy rhythms.  You can also experiment with the knob somewhere in between and get even more sounds.   Furthermore, you can have expression pedal control over this function.  You can also control the repeats of Delay A with an expression pedal for those times when you want to get all Johnny Greenwood and throw it in and out of self-oscillation.

Tweakables:
modulation – (Delay A) depth/rate controls speed and amount – goes from subtle chorus-y to phase/flange to tidal wave pitch bends to ring mod-like super fast tremolo to pulsing alien spaceships to….you get the idea.
reverb – (Delay B) can be tweaked to induce all sorts of different sensual reverb sounds.
time – changes speed of delay from reverb-y slap back all the way to pretty spaced out repeats
repeats – changes amount of repeats.  Expression pedal control on Delay A
mix – changes amount of dry vs. wet signal.  Noon is 50/50, anything past that causes a volume boost.  It’s a good thing.
bleed –  allows the two delays to run in parallel mode or series/parallel mode .  You can feed delay A in to delay B without having delay B switched on for a cleaner rhythmic delay.
switching – This pedal features a cool switching system.  The outputs of both delays are always connected. This allows you to have trails by always leaving it on bypass or to use the bypass switch as the master on/off for true bypass.

www.earthquakerdevices.com

 Conclusion

Both of these pedals are worth their respective prices.  It just depends on what kind of sound and features you prefer for delay.  If you like something a little more familiar yet extremely versatile go with the Dual Tap.  If you like to experiment, find new sounds, and are a fan of analog tape echo, you won’t regret owning the Disaster Transport SR.  If you’re like me and are obsessed with having as many sounds as possible, buy them both!  Either way, both companies offer some form of lifetime warranties for their pedals so rest assured you’re making a good investment with the products proudly produced domestically by the good patriots of Visual Sound and Earth Quaker Devices.  If Jesus played guitar, he would use these pedals.  Thanks for reading.

Love,

Nick
The Pedal File