A Thread About Delay Pedals

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Dyens
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A Thread About Delay Pedals

#1 Post by Dyens » Mon May 14, 2012 5:42 pm

As of today I have two delays on my board. I've had one of the new Deluxe Memory Man delays for a year or two and just added a TC Electronic Nova Delay with the IB Modification available when you order through Sweetwater or Pro Guitar Shops. I have to say that I love it... so far as I can tell. It's a very tricky pedal to get the hang of but the variety of tones, not just delays, is fantastic. And running a delay in stereo is a ton of fun! The modified version is a limited run but there are still plenty in stock at Sweetwater and they are actually cheaper than the standard versions. A rep from TC told me that this is because people didn't buy them as quickly as expected and the low price is really just an exit strategy for the retailer rather than a clue to the pedal's lesser quality. Quite the opposite, really. The pedal has an upgraded, analog input buffer as well as better components that result in a tighter low end and overall better clarity.

Other delays I checked out were the TC Electronic Flashback and Alter Ego delays and the Electro-Harmonix Stereo Memory Man with Hazari and the Deluxe Memory Boy. The TC Stuff sounded awesome and met most of my criteria but had just a few shortcomings that made me want to step up to the Nova for only a little bit more money. The Memory Man with Hazari doesn't seem to do anything that the Nova can't do and it is harder to navigate, less versatile, doesn't save presets, and costs more. The Deluxe Memory Boy is an AMAZING pedal. The feedback loop is something that I really wish the Nova had but it isn't essential, really. Before I looked at the Nova I was impressed by the Deluxe Memory Boy's tap tempo and built in subdivisions and was happy to find that the Nova had the same features. I probably would have sprung for the Deluxe Memory Boy but the thing I was really looking for in a pedal was stereo inputs and outputs so the absence of those was a deal breaker.

The Pigtronix Echolution is a pedal I was very impressed with but it got crossed off the list before I even really played around with it because of the lack of stereo ins. The T-Rex Replica is another that just sounded fantastic -- almost made me say to hell with this stereo rig thing -- but in the end I had to pass on it. The Eventide Time Factor had my attention for a bit because it is just so damn tweak-able but I really dislike the harsh digital edge to the sound. Plus it has features I knew I wouldn't use like the looper and the midi capabilities which really contribute to the high price. The Strymon Timeline, on the other hand, looks like an amazing delay pedal in that same price range but I couldn't find a way to try it out so I couldn't seriously consider it. But the YouTube demos I saw made it sound like an absolutely phenomenal unit.

Overall, I'm very happy with the Nova. It has everything I wanted with none of the things I didn't want to pay for. I've spent the whole day in front of my two amps listening to those beautifully colored delays ping ponging all around. Combined with my Deluxe Memory Man, I have really wonderful, thick, long sustain that goes on forever.

So, I don't want this thread to be all about me and my good fortune with this pedal. What delay units are you particularly interested in? Which ones do you own?
Last edited by Dyens on Mon May 14, 2012 6:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#2 Post by aaronm » Mon May 14, 2012 6:13 pm

a boss delay ,..thats it 8)

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#3 Post by Dyens » Mon May 14, 2012 6:32 pm

Good stuff, for sure. The tone of those pedals is ok and I appreciate the variety in delay styles and the stereo ins and outs but at the end of the day I needed subdivisions and tap tempo built in.

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#4 Post by Jeries » Mon May 14, 2012 6:35 pm

Make sure you're using delays in the effects loop and not before a preamp

I think the boss DD-3/DD-6/DD-7 are some of the best pedals ever made HOWEVER they're fairly useless- they do so much but have one switch/button

So... I'd recommend a Line 6 DL-4

MXR Carbon Copy is also a great delay

one of the cheapest and most underrated pedals of all time- Ibanez DE-7 Delay... amazing pedal

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#5 Post by Dyens » Mon May 14, 2012 6:42 pm

I used to have a DL-4. Very awesome pedal and the looper is so functional.

I've heard the good things about running delays and other time based/modulation effects in the loop but my amps are super old and don't have them, so I am stuck running everything out front and the sound is just fine. It would be nice to have my delays after my tubes but it isn't the end of the world.

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#6 Post by Jeries » Mon May 14, 2012 8:22 pm

if you're running into the front of the amp

i'd recommend a Ibanez DE-7 or a MXR Carbon Copy

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#7 Post by Dyens » Tue May 15, 2012 3:10 am

Wh do you say that?

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#8 Post by Jeries » Tue May 15, 2012 1:02 pm

The Boss DD's an DL4's are really only good in the fx loop

you can prob use a dd3 in front of the amp but its digital and i dont think you'd get great results

The two pedals i did recommend i think you can play with an get really good results going into the front of the amp with...

i think you need a good amp before a delay
what are you using?

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#9 Post by Dyens » Tue May 15, 2012 7:02 pm

I understand the benefits of a delay in the loop but I don't really understand any negatives of not having it in the loop. In other words, I don't find anything explicitly negative about not having a delay in the loop. Unless you just want to keep your chain short on the way in. What are the facts pointing to delays absolutely needing to go in the loop?

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#10 Post by Jeries » Tue May 15, 2012 8:57 pm

good question...
your amp- amplifies guitar tone
it runs it into a preamp that makes what travels through your cables loud enough to go into a power amp which drives speakers

the preamp not only makes it louder but colors the sound with eq and sometimes distortion

(obviously you already know all this... i know)

you want the preamp- amping your guitar itself...

(also why you want wah wah's and pitch shifters early in the chain- to fool the amp and other effects that its the guitar making the wah wah or sounding an octave higher- so it sounds more natural- like the guitar is doing it and not an effect is doing it....

anyway

when you plug a delay into the amp- your amp is reacting with the full preamp and all that stuff to ever delay and note it hears...

what you want is the sound/preamp being complete and that being delayed...

so the whole guitar tone and sound and what your playing is delayed rather than delaying the guitar and amplifying that

there's no rules- do what you want but a lot of things are standard road tested

you can put delay into the front of the amp... you can put distortion before or after wah with big/different results...

with the right delay pedal (i'd say a carbon copy dd3 or ibanez de7) you can get a good fairly natural result

plugging a guitar in to a dd7 and into the front of the amp or something like a dl4- your digitalizing your guitar before it even hits the amp- may give off a less natural result

but overall if it makes sense- you want your amp amplyfing the guitar- not guitar with trails of delay it gets jumbled an makes the preamp behave un natural/un desirable and making it work all over the place than just what your guitar is putting out.


THINK ABOUT THIS>>>
reverb
you'd never want reverb going into the front of the amp-
because you'll be amplifying/distorted/eqing the trail echos of delay- having your amp distort or amplify reverb sounds horrible

overall in the effects loop (delay/reverb/etc) is much more cleaner and consistent
it will cause less distortion
every amp that has reverb puts it after the preamp right before the power amp

distortion is also a form of compression so depending on where distortion is from the amp or a pedal it can give a bad result going into the front of the amp

but you can do/try what ever you want
theres tons of materials online about the 'where to put a delay'

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#11 Post by 02T » Tue May 15, 2012 9:49 pm

Also, I've found that the volume of the delay is much louder if it's in front of the amp, rather than in the loop. I've used the VOX Time Machine, and am currently using the MXR Carbon Copy and TC Electronic Flashback, with the same result. Basically, it's much easier for me to get the sound I'm looking for if it's in the loop. Just need to run it on a different power supply than my chain going into the amp to avoid some noise issues

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Re: A Thread About Delay Pedals

#12 Post by chook01 » Wed Jun 06, 2012 9:55 am

I use a line 6 pod x3 live with the four cable hook up which means i can have stomp box effects sent to the front of the amp and delay etc sent to the loop,this works quite well for me and i like the line 6 effects especially their delays they are as good as any and i get the added benefit of any other effects i wish to add,i also like the octave fuzz mixed with some rotary drum and horn,sounds really Hendrix.

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