Other Equipment

NEW Strymon VOLANTE Magnetic Echo Machine

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one has wasted hours, weeks, months of vibrant youth playing with two tape decks and exploring what can be achieved in sound sculpture.

Ah, but that's not wasted time. That time is not debited against your allotted span. That's time outside of time. Sidereal time. Wormhole time. Time out of time. Each delay repeat reverses the flow. Didn't you know?

Time machines.

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Dangit WB! Why you gotta make me interested in Reverb pedals again?? ;P

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Ruger, I haven't been trying to get DMM out of it. If you mean warbly murk...it might do that. I'll check tonight.

It doesn't really have a straightforward tone control, just a low cut to progressively thin out the repeats (and you could find the DMM's girth in there somewhere). The "Wear" knob does cut highs (among other artifacts of tape degradation), so with the combination of the two you might be able to dial that in.

The default repeats are by no means over-bright; they're rounded and pleasing, neither too much one thing nor another; I'm finding that one of the chief attractions of the pedal. But by nature they sound a little more composed than the DMM's.

Also, the modulation available under the "Mechanics" knob differs fundamentally from the DMM's. It's more vibrato than chorus (chorusing comes from mixing Mechanics with overlaying repeats). But the DMM's chorus and vibrato are regular in period - the Volante's Mechanics are more random. Though they follow the knobs pretty closely in speed and depth, you can't accurately predict their depth or cycle. To me, that's magic. It's a subtle thing, but it keeps the sound from being static and boring. Apparently the brain is happiest when it experiences a pattern of overall repetition and regularity, but relieved by aberrations and novelty. (Which is why the soul hates a drum machine, or vocals flown from chorus to chorus in a DAW.)

In other DMM comparisons, the "Rec Level" control on the Volante does something similar to the input gain on the DMM, in emulating overdriving an analog preamp. Of course, on a DMM that's exactly what you're doing, and how you get that driven tone. In the Volante, I suspect it's emulated somehow - and it's trying to emulate tape saturation. Two differences: on the DMM, cranking that knob makes the pedal louder, and the drive gets warmer/fuzzier/more blown out as you go clockwise. On the Volante, volume stays linear at all knob settings - and it's a bit cleaner/crunchier dirt. Very pleasing, and depending on your favorite DMM settings, may get you to the same place. But a different range of control. The "saturation" sounds similar to that in the Deco, but not as dark and soft.

It self-oscillates similarly to the DMM, though with more control and composure. Turning the Time knob during oscillation doesn't deliver exactly the same experience as the DMM. In one way it's not as smooth - it's digitally steppier. But it also doesn't get as out of shape and blownout as when the DMM goes into total noise; you can always hear details. And a very interesting detail is that the pitch-shifted smears you get when turning the dial during oscillation both catch up with themselves more quickly than on the DMM (which might be bad if you're trying to duplicate DMMitude) AND become part of the input to the delays and are repeated endlessly but in a much clearer way. Too cool.


But getting a Volante to emulate a DMM (or classic slapback/tape echo tool of choice) is poor economy and a waste of the Volante's voodoo. Three things stand out to me so far (in about 8 hours of playing, much of it spent trancing in great settings rather than exploring for range): first, the ideal balance of clarity and murk Strymon has hit; second, the brilliance of the control over the 4 delay lines (or multi-taps, however you want to think of it); third, the ear candiness of being able to spread those lines across the stereo spectrum.

Clarity vs murk: I hesitate to say the machine sounds "digital," with the usual connotations of cold, brittle, soulless, harsh. The repeats are like the most perfect magnetic-delay reproduction you've heard, with new tape and with perfect eq and input gain. But they stay that way unless you dial in Mechanics (wow/flutter/transport anomalies in tape parlance, modulation by type) or Wear (freq degradation/high cut). And all those controls get predictable at any given combination of settings (though they interact along the way for plenty of variety).

The repeats certainly darken over time as they recede - but they don't quite mud up in the same way as tape or analog devices. And while the soundfield gets denser and more full of stuff over time, it doesn't degenerate into indistinguishable noise. It's not that it calls attention to itself: you can "ignore" it and just enjoy it as a cloudy bed of roil. But if you choose to listen to it, you can still make out the details of individual impulses. That's a novel experience for me. With tape or analog, the underflow can turn to complete muck AND gradually overtake your input. Doesn't happen here. It makes listening to the device more engaging and interesting over time.

Those 8 delay-line control buttons. Way easier to find useful subdivisions and delay patterns than with any other delay I've used. Multi-taps and note subdivisions end up baffling me. Here there's a combination of logic (delay 4 is the longest; 3 is half that; 2 half that, and 1 half again), enough parameters to get functionally endless varieties of combinations, and visual clarity of control. Also, each delay line gets its own decay character, so you have volume dynamics: while line 1 is decaying at its rate, the other lines are each decaying at their OWN rates, so you continue to get some repeats louder than the others. Hard to articulate - but the whole mass of repeats doesn't decay in lockstep in one smooth decrescendo, each line has its own envelope, and they overlap. It can be endlessly fascinating. Trails, man.

And since you can turn off feedback for each line separately, and have one or more lines repeat just once while others are feeding back (in any combination) - or turn off the initial input to the line and JUST hear the repeats - possibility for variety increases exponentially. And that's before you use the Spacing knob to slew between repeat offsets.

What you get is maximum variability and useful range of discovery with a minimum of easily-understood controls.

It's the patterns of repeats that I think will keep most guys intrigued with the pedal beyond the initial "yep, drum; yep, echoplex" evaluation. There's just way more potential for useful sonic entertainment than a pure emulation would offer. More variety.

That stereo thing. A small touch (and one of the few alt-control sound parameters on the pedal), but man is it mighty. Hold a feedback button and twist the time button, and you can park the outputs of each delay line anywhere you like across a stereo pan. This helps clarify what each line is doing (and make the patterns of repeats more interesting), opens up the stereo field to make it more accessible, and further extends the sonic possibilities.

But I'm a stereo junkie. I can't imagine living in Brian Wilson's one-eared world.

I haven't even mentioned the reverb. I don't try to evaluate springiness of reverbs, because I'm not an aficionado or obsessive in that domain - but it has more of the spring character my ear expects after 60 years of hearing amp reverb than I get from some devices which claim the specialty - and the "drip" is surprisingly effective without being either too thin or too exaggerated.

And I haven't even played with the "sound-on-sound" looping yet.


Overall, as we might have expected from Strymon and their approach to digital reproduction of earlier technologies (demonstrated vividly in the Deco), they've delivered a range of effects we might think we can get from other devices - but done it by consistently applying functional metaphors from the old tech itself. Because the control scheme is based on (and labeled for) the old tech, it's easier to get the effects we expect - even while we know that "under the hood" Strymon is manipulating the same parameters other makers of digital effects have access to. And at the same time, that same digital tech gives the Volante waaay more range of possibility than the old tech it's inspired by. It emulates, but vastly extends.

Since I like the characteristic round, balanced and rich tone of Strymon products (Pete Celli's ears must have the same response curve as mine), I'll take the extension Strymon offers over the accuracy of the emulation any time. I'm not saying Volante doesn't knock off a drum echo, a tape echo, and studio decks used for echo - depending on any user's experience of any of those techs, it might. But it definitely delivers a wisely idealized distillation of those techs, transcending the limitations that prevented them from completely delivering on the promise of their own designs in the first place - freeing what was great about those machines from the constraints of their technology.

Doing all that opens up terrain they pointed the way toward, but never quite got to.

All in all, while there are elements of the DMM here (along with the character of earlier tech), the Volante is more than all of them multiplied by each other. IF you like that experimental range. If not, you'd have to audition it for the particular emulation you're after, and I can't judge that for anyone else.

Since there are 8 presets (with immediate access to one at a time from the provided footswitches, more with a remote or MIDI), I'm sure it's possible to set up subtle tape doubling/widening, wobbly flangification, slapback, DMM-like effects, and straightforward delays and turn the Volante into a single very practical gig pedalboard delay solution. (If 4 seconds is enough.) I can't imagine it wouldn't sound way better than good enough in all those roles.

I was just exploring what it might do that seems new to me - or more easily and intuitively achieved with the Volante than with other devices (or combinations of devices). Ease of discovery is important to me, and Volante has that for sure. Makes it easy to go new places with a shallow learning curve based on stuff I already knew.

Can't beat that.

So I kinda like it.

– Proteus

'In other DMM comparisons, the "Rec Level" control on the Volante does something similar to the input gain on the DMM, in emulating overdriving an analog preamp. Of course, on a DMM that's exactly what you're doing, and how you get that driven tone. In the Volante, I suspect it's emulated somehow - and it's trying to emulate tape saturation.'

For once Strymon isn't just emulating something, they're doing it for real. There are 2 JFET preamps driving each input to the delay line, which are controlled by the record level knob. Which is why I'm more interested in this than anything else they've put out.

'Multi-taps and note subdivisions end up baffling me. Here there's a combination of logic (delay 4 is the longest; 3 is half that; 2 half that, and 1 half again), enough parameters to get functionally endless varieties of combinations, and visual clarity of control.'

Actually, head 2 is half of head 4, with 3 in between. So with head 4 at 1000ms for example, it would be 3 at 750, 2 at 500, and 1 at 250.

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Thanks for those clarifications, George. That explains why the math I thought was working on delay spacing wasn't giving me the spacing I expected. (Though the "head spacing" math also gets slewed by the Spacing knob settings.)

OK on the actual JFETs on the inputs, though I'm not a stickler for whether Strymon does it digitally or analogically. I should mention (if I didn't) that the Rec Level here produces a harsher, brighter, arguably more brittle drive than the comparable control on the Deco. It sounds like hard clipping to me. It barks. And since it's on a rotary knob from none to lots, that's fine. (I wouldn't want to be stuck with it on all the time.)

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For those interested, here is the best demo I've seen, and a great tutorial.

I will likely get one of these, someday when they are in stock (past their backordered phase) and I get a 15% or 20% coupon to someplace that sells it...

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That Pedal Show declares (basically) the Volante IS the END-ALL/BE-ALL of digital delays, ever. Also basically as good as any vintage analog unit of the past:

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Sure, it's the best. For now. Maybe. Just wait 6 months.

I've been a delay snob for almost as long as I've played guitar. The first effect I ever bought was a Boss DM2. But Strymon delays leave me cold. I've had the Brigadier, the El Cap, The Timeline, the Deco, and I still have a Flint - which is of course not a delay but a reverb/tremolo. I really can't say what it is but while they should be perfect for me they aren't. Maybe it's because where I live we have 240V power but I have always had problems with Strymon effects cutting out or needing to be restarted because my dry signal disappears. This has happened to me on every Strymon I have had except the Deco and the Flint. Yes I use the right power supply.

There are not many delays I like actually! But Strymon promise more than most and should be exactly what I like. I just find them strangely uninvolving. I wish it wasn't like this. And now I am finding myself drifting away from delay altogether. i still love my slapback delay with the 6120 but now I am more into reverb - or with the Les Paul just overdrive.

It's weird that the cleverer and more detailed delays have become, the less i like to use them. Guess I'm fickle.

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It's weird that the cleverer and more detailed delays have become, the less i like to use them.

I'm using less echo than I used to, but I like how digital is evolving - the tape simulations are better than ever, dry signal doesn't get f'd into bits and bytes any more. there's finally some choices between murky, clock-noise cricket infested analog and squeaky clean digital.

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Strymon delays leave me cold. I've had the Brigadier, the El Cap, The Timeline, the Deco, and I still have a Flint - which is of course not a delay but a reverb/tremolo. I really can't say what it is but while they should be perfect for me they aren't. Maybe it's because where I live we have 240V power but I have always had problems with Strymon effects cutting out or needing to be restarted because my dry signal disappears. This has happened to me on every Strymon I have had except the Deco and the Flint. Yes I use the right power supply.

There are not many delays I like actually! But Strymon promise more than most and should be exactly what I like. I just find them strangely uninvolving.

Sorry about your luck with Strymon, Jimmy. As I've mentioned before, mine have been über-rock-solid reliable. Also, my ear really like Strymon's voicing. Internet consensus seems to be that there's some secret-sauce frequency filtering going on with the effect signal in most Styrmons (NOT in the dry-through, which I find pristine). If so, Pete Celi seems to know what my ears like.

But no harm no foul. It's great to figure out what builders' pedals just don't hit your ear right, because you can avoid wasting time on them in the future.

It's taken me awhile, but I realize I don't get along with most Pigtronix or Z-Vex stuff. It's too noisy, or muddy, or the interfaces don't do what I expect.

Over the long haul, Empress stuff - as capable and deluxe as it is - sounds a bit cold and clinical to me. (It's probably "flat" - and apparently I like some juice.)

Likewise, there's something about Subdecay pedals which doesn't satisfy tonally. I like the functionality, and the builder has been nothing but generous and helpful when I've had questions - but at the end of the day, I don't think our ears hear the same way.

Alas, I've found the same with both Keeley and Wampler. I think both probably have great ears for mainstream/classic/"iconic" tones, so that's where their pedals excel - and it's why they're so universally popular. And I've had several pedals from both, and want to like them. I do like them. I keep them for a long time - then realize I'm just not stomping them very often. Off they go.

Likewise, for me, Lovepedal. Ehh, so what.

And TC Electronic. I keep trying their pedals - they look like compelling values, and read like they're magic. But I try them and go, yeah. Toneprint, yadda yadda. Nothing compelling here. Next.

On the other hand, I almost always like the aroma coming off of Electro-Harmonic and, once I scratch the surface, Boss. EHX almost amuses me: there are SO many pedals in the line, and the more adventurous of them do either crazy inventive things, or a ton of things for the money, or both. Their demo guy Bill Ruppert gets amazing stuff out of the pedals. But the manuals are dry as dirt, matter-of-fact and pretty much devoid of serving suggestions. It's like they build freaky machines but don't even know it.

Boss is actually the same way, but more so. If any builder is the default and defacto IBM standard of the industry, nothing flashy but solid and reliable, it's Boss. The interfaces on the pedals are almost absurdly clear and straightforward (except when they're...not) - and the modal screen interfaces on more complicated gear is very DOSsy/Windowsy/NOT Mac-like. A bit convoluted and clunky. And when you get their more advanced menu-driven devices, the default programmed tones are always dazzlingly UNinspired.

And yet. All the functionality is in there to program them to sound gorgeous, and go waaay freakier than the surface suggests. Getting there isn't as easy as on pedals designed for the fringe, but some Boss stuff can go farther and get crazier. I like that - but it doesn't relieve the tedium of the interface.

At opposite end of the price spectrum, I know I can rely on Chase Bliss not only to craft warm, lush, rich-sounding effects, but treat my bypass tone without touching it. And Joel's ear, again, must be close to mine in response, because I always like the voicings.

I'm finding the same is the case with Red Panda pedals. They don't have many, but I get along great with every one I've tried.

If there's another brand of pedals whose tone and interface always grin me up, it's Meris. Simple controls doing all kinds of sophisticated interactive things under the hood (hiding complexity sorta like the Mac interface), and anywhere you crank the knobs you not only get something that sounds great, you're also likely to discover something you hadn't expected. And their sound is like audio opium to me. You guys go on, just leave me here with the lotus-eaters. I'll be fine.

Anyway...it's useful to learn whose pedals you're unlikely to get on with. Maybe you shouldn't completely ignore them - there are always surprises - but it does save time.

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Hope it's ok to rewind the tape a little here.. .tell me more about the TC electronics Alter Ego, I know ruger9 likes em. I have a weird desire to run my band recordings through it at the mastering stage so the stereo out/in option is interesting. Plus all this classic models would be fun to run through

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Main question on the Alter Ego is, how easy is it to get rid of the chorus/warble effect?

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Main question on the Alter Ego is, how easy is it to get rid of the chorus/warble effect?

– Vince_Ray

You can't. It's not tweakable like that, there is no modulation control. the whole idea of the AlterEgo was, to have MODULATED (warbly) delays, in a very small package, WITHOUT TWEAKING. Alot of people thing it has too much modulation. Ir depends on how you use it: for the shogazers, the guys who run the mix and repeats really high for those crazy washes, probably do think it has too much modulation. For "normal" guys like me, who want more of a Gilmour type thing, it works perfectly. I love mine, enough so that I bought a 2nd one when my 1st one crapped out on me.

Caveat: the AlterEgov2 does have 1 "toneprint" slot, which means you can use software to create your own delay (like if you want less modulation), then save it in that spot. I've done it, it's not hard, but I'm not a fan of needing software to program a pedal. I'm simpler than that.

Also, the Alter Ego v2 does have one setting: BDM2 (stands for Boss DM2), that is GREAT- sounds ALOT like the DM2, that has no modulation.

There is also a toneprint app, which makes it very easy to load a toneprint (preprogrammed by TC) into that slot. So, you could find a tape delay with almost no modulation - which they do have available- and put that into the one tone slot. That is very easy to do, then you'd have at least one setting with only a little modulation available.)

Jimmy- Strymon delays also leave me cold, and it's not uncommon: alot of guys over on TGP feel the same way, and it's why I went with the TC stuff instead. HOWEVER- I've asked about this regarding the Volante, and the report is that it's not like that: that whatever Strymon did, it isn't "cold" anymore.... but it's one of those things you won't know until you feel it under your own fingers. Have to buy and try.

my resume: (limited to Strymon and TC delays, because the full list would take up half a page easily LOL):

Strymon Brigadier- twice
Strymon El Capistan - twice (or was it 3 times?)
TC Flashback
TC Flashback X4
TC Alter Egov2 (on my 2nd one)
TC Alter Ego X4

...I would actually own another AlterEgo X4, so I had presets, but it's just too big for my pedalboard, and I refuse to make it any bigger. Even if I bought the Volante, it would stay home for fun, I wouldn't be taking it to gigs... don't need anything like that for gigs anyway, I'm not a shoegazer or surfer lol.

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Walter, I’m looking at your comments on the SA True Spring, and its superiority to the Flint. I’m a fan of SA, and it doesn’t surprise me that it’s a great pedal.

I’m also not enough of a spring fetishist to evaluate nuances of drip and dwell in one pedal vs another (nor does it quite matter enough to me to choose one pedal over another based on spring). But I have the SA Ventris, with a True Spring algorithm I would assume is the same as that in the TS. It does sound different from the Flint - maybe in ways that mark it as truly springier - but I don’t necessarily like it better.

(I don’t think it follows that I don’t “get” spring, because every time I’ve played through an outboard spring tank - Fender and BZ’s Kahuna - I’ve fallen in and loved the experience. Maybe I just haven’t heard a digital spring yet that delivers that. Could be one of those things - like a Leslie - that has to be experienced live in the room, and even the best digital emulations sound like recordings rather than real.)

But apparently, for you, the TS was better enough than the Flint to make the switch. Or is it that among the choice and depth of three spring models in the TS vs a single model in Flint, you were better able to dial in your ideal spring? Also, I take it you don’t miss the non-spring models in the Flint? My home base is the Plate, and I appreciate having the digital as well. Don’t know if I’d want to give those up just to get more/better spring.

(Though maybe with the Neuro pedal-tweakin’ app, I could replace existing Spring models with other ‘verbs from SA’s library. Hmm. If the TS is like other Neuro-enabled SA pedals, there are probably more/deeper parameters in the pedal that can only be accessed through the software...something to look into.)

But I’m curious both about how you get along with the TS’s pedal interface, and what kind of citizen it is on your board. You say it’s smaller than the Flint - and physically, it clearly is. But Flint’s connections are all in the top, so it can sit in closer proximity to other pedals - whereas TS has its jacks on the side. When wired up, doesn’t it end up taking as much lateral room on the board as the Flint?

And all the trem controls are hidden as alt functions under the reverb knobs. You have to hold a little button on the front end of the pedal and twist knobs to make trem changes, right? So I take it you set up a favorite trem ahead of time, and just use it? How do you engage trem separately from ‘verb, when there’s only one stomp? And no tap tempo for its rate either?

I know all those functions can be Neuro-controlled - but that doesn’t invite or facilitate quick changes on the fly in response to the immediacy and improvisation of a gig. I have the SA LA Lady stereo multi-dirter, and I know Neuro gives me unusual options in depth of tweakery - but I seldom hook it up and tweak. Maybe if the pedal connection was Bluetooth rather than a wire, it would be more inviting.

It seems ironic that a pedal with more depth and potential for variety - by virtue of an external programming interface - actually ends up being tweaked less, because much of its control was moved off-pedal for the sake of a compact form factor. (Actually, the same is true of the H9 - or TC’s Toneprinty pedals.)

It’s like...for some applications (live gigging with a tight rehearsed set list), all the programming power is useful because it facilitates setting up a few rigid presets that will be easily accessed on the fly - and for other applications (studio and experimental), access to many and deep parameters is cool for the sake both of adventure and of precisely honing a tone for the moment.

It’s still paradoxical, though. I know all that depth is there in the TC, SA, and other products with apps - and I like the complex tweakery it enables - but I still gravitate to pedals with knobs for everything, and a minimum of alt functions. I'm much more likely to twist knobs than to hook up a computer and play with parameters.

I was just curious how you balance those dynamics to suit your purposes on the seemingly simple True Spring.

I'm not saying I wouldn't like the True Spring - the prospect of deep editing via Neuro does intrigue me - but man. It would take a durn near miracle box to kick the Flint off my board.

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I thought “magnetism” was in the realm of quackery and voodoo?

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I thought “magnetism” was in the realm of quackery and voodoo?

Heckno. Magnetism is baked into the fundamental laws of the universe.

Also, in college I had a Haitian professor (specializing in ancient and primitive religions) who had been a voodoo priest before his "conversion" - and he did not joke about voodoo. He did not countenance using the term (per western cultural norms since at least the 30s) as a light cognate for "magic." (I didn't know any ex-Wiccan priests; maybe they would have objected to casual use of "magic.")

Anyway, voodoo clearly still impressed him with its power. Maybe that was the power of superstition and psychological suggestion, which puts it on the borderline of quackery.

Magnetism was certainly real in all the delay devices we're discussing here (though we're debating the virtues of microchipped digital simulations of their macro magnetic properties). Our guitars would sure be quiet without magnetism.

It only enters the realm of quackery when deployed for purposes with no testable experimental confirmation. That is, the magnetism itself is still real. The purpose might just be bogus.

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Thanks ruger9, I suspected the Alter Ego modulation could be reduced through the software but like you, I don't have much motivation to fool with software at the moment. I'd rather be playing it. But I'd like to try using it on mixdown for a bit of Sun style echo, so no modulation needed there

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Thanks ruger9, I suspected the Alter Ego modulation could be reduced through the software but like you, I don't have much motivation to fool with software at the moment. I'd rather be playing it. But I'd like to try using it on mixdown for a bit of Sun style echo, so no modulation needed there

– Vince_Ray

Ah, well in that case, I'm sure you could find a ready-made toneprint that you would dig for that application. Even the BDM2 setting (which is stock on the pedal) might do the trick... but those Sun echoes were kinda' bright? Downloading the free phone app is easy peasy, you could breeze through there and see what's available before dropping dime on the pedal itself.

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Tim, your questions about the SA True Spring!

First of all, you misunderstood something. I have never owned the Flint. I've tried it though, and plenty of my friends own one. I'm familiar enough with it to know I'm not convinced by their spring reverb model. The decay just sounds weird/wrong/a little cheesy. And in my guitar rig, as you might understand being somewhat familiar with my music and what I like, only spring reverb will do.

SA's True Spring's onboard spring models (and you can access extra ones through the neuro app) are not the same as in their Ventris Reverb. They got so many positive reactions to the spring setting in that box, that they realized they were on to something, and there would probably be a market for a "different springs only" pedal. Judging by even the three models that come in the pedal without even accessing the extra ones in the Neuro App, they really did their homework. There's a "small combo" (small princeton reverb pan), "large combo" (all the bigger reverb amps) and "outboard tank" model you can switch between on the face of the pedal.

To my admittedly jaded, snobby, overly critical and geeky ears, especially the "small combo" and "outboard tank" models are the best I've heard/played through - though I obviously haven't played everything that's available these days. The hardware controls on the pedal allow me to tweak the small spring setting so it sounds a LOT like the blackface combos I'm used to, the outboard setting mimics my very specific use of an outboard tank.

I apologize for this looong post, but you asked a lot of questions.

My reasons for getting the SA True Spring : Driving gigs : I take my "big" (still fairly modest by today's standards) pedal board and a proper outboard spring tank. No digital reverb, because I can be self-indulgent and use the real thing.

The True Spring is on my "flying gig" board. (I also use this for a lot of rehearsals) I don't play as many flying gigs as I used to, but still play them, and my home effects rig is just too stinking big for that. All of it is fairly low budget, and I typically have to make to with a typical promotor-provided economy flight where I can take one piece of checked luggage, and one piece of carry-on.
The checked luggage is a tricked out Korean X-175 reissue in a flight-resistant case. The carry on is a little suitcase that is just able to hold the change of clothes, stage shirt, toilet bag, a couple of guitar cables, capo, strings, and a PedalTrain Nano+ board. I'm typically away for two nights, so that just works, if barely.

For my band, I only use one "outboard tank" setting on the reverb, and I only need one (bias) tremolo setting. I use trem on two or three tunes, but they really do need them. I can make the same setting work for all of them. I might dial in a little more reverb mix for the odd tune, that works too.

I have the extra little pedal from SA to turn the reverb on and off. The SA True Spring is not as power hungry as the Flint, so I can feed it off the neat little CIOKS DC-5 Power supply that's mounted under my pedaltrain Nano+. I need reverb and trem for the gig, I don't know what amp I'm going to get (usually ask and pray for a bassman reissue), versatility from the 'verb and trem I do not need. Just need it to sound and feel great for that one thing I want it to do.

My little travel board does everything I need for my band's gig, crammed into a relatively small space. Tuner, univibe pedal that does the bo diddley vibrato as well as decent enough rotary for the odd SRV-type excursion. Slap echo for the Rockabilly stuff. The Snouse Black Box is cool for when I'm stuck with a twin reverb or other stupid big amp I cannot turn up to get some breakup and compression. The Greer Tone Smuggler is for those moments I need more overdrive, and is one of those rare OD's that doesn't eat my hollowbody's low end. And then there's the True Spring, with good reverb and tremolo. Yay!

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Thanks, Walter. That all makes eminent sense for your application.

I realize the toggles on the TS can be configured to switch between presets, one or more of which might include a pre-tweaked trem - but knowing your material and perfomance style I couldn't picture you bending over to flip a toggle on the floor unless something went wrong. So knowing you have the external stomp for the TS trem brings it all together.

You're an example of my first use case, above: touring pro with a tight and specific set of requirements, for which pedals are more or less set up ready to go. If it takes deep programmability to get a specific sound, OK; that's done ahead of time and baked in. Stomp and go.

I'm more the second case: deep programmability attracts me for its own sake, so I can chase it wherever it goes, without concern for ease or repeatability because the whole rig is mostly a home entertainment system.

All of which still leaves me curious about the parameters hidden inside Neuro for the True Spring.

I no longer know whether to hope for more interesting pedals - or for the golden-age deluge of great toys to abate somewhat. I go through acquisition-and-experimentation phases followed by long periods of self-education, consolidation, elimination of duplication, and general gear-satisfaction.

The past 18 months or so have been pretty acquisitive. I keep thinking I'm almost done...

95

Ah, well in that case, I'm sure you could find a ready-made toneprint that you would dig for that application. Even the BDM2 setting (which is stock on the pedal) might do the trick... but those Sun echoes were kinda' bright? Downloading the free phone app is easy peasy, you could breeze through there and see what's available before dropping dime on the pedal itself.

– ruger9

But doesn't the app control the pedal, beaming the info to it? So without the pedal, the app wouldn't be much use? Any clues would be appreciated, I'd love to know more

96

But doesn't the app control the pedal, beaming the info to it? So without the pedal, the app wouldn't be much use? Any clues would be appreciated, I'd love to know more

– Vince_Ray

No, you are correct. I was just saying if you wanted to check out the toneprints that are available BEFORE buying the pedal, you can do that, you can download the app for free and check out the available toneprints. It's a toneprint library as well as a toneprint builder/editor.

The toneprints have written descriptions.


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