Ultimate Pedal Effects Special: Delay Pedals

The Best In Delay

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 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. Lets kick it off with the best in delay pedals.

Outlaw Quick Draw Delay

EFFECT: DELAY | RRP: $99.95 | DISTRIBUTOR: PRO MUSIC AUSTRALIA

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Will appeal to all kinds of guitarists as a cheaper and simpler alternative to other household delay pedals.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

If a pedal delivers on what it promises 
it can be hard to fault. That’s why the minimal three-prong attack of time, echo, and repeat is so rewarding – each plays a role in assembling ethereal textures and punchy rockabilly bite. This pedal knows its purpose, and never overstretches, always finding the sweet spot: the emphatic articulation of the original note, and the sun-bleached swells of delay in response.

 

USABILITY:

By switching the delay time to 10 o’clock you set the stage for a balanced sound. The delay is felt, yet not overbearing. From this position playing with the echo (volume of echoes) and the repeat (number of times the echo repeats), allows you to swiftly shift between softer, more seductive doses of delay, and grander, more chaotic soundscapes. It specifically operates between 20ms and a very generous 620ms. Twist them both up to maximum and it will self-oscillate, swirling into a wall of distortion and, ultimately, combusting.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

The little pocket rocket looks and feels like it can handle itself.

 

OVERALL:

Beyond all of the crazy functions, outlandish capabilities and wallet melting price tags sits the Quick Draw Delay. It’s a little gem that hits the mark time after time.

 

BY CHRIS SCOTT

 

MXR Carbon Copy Bright Analog Delay

EFFECT: DELAY | RRP: $319 | DISTRIBUTOR: AUSTRALASIAN MUSIC SUPPLIES

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Guitarists looking for a household delay pedal with a sunnier edge. From shoegaze to ambience, to neo-psych and indie folk – this will fit the bill.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

Like its original, the Carbon Copy Analog Delay, a ton of delay types can be shaped and constructed with this pedal. The range swings from slapback delay, to an elongated 600ms delay time that’s space-y and hypnotic. The mod switch caters to delay-specific genres. Where its tonal character differentiates itself from other delay pedals is with the brighter focus – every setting is dressed in a shinier, glistening coat. The added richness to clean shimmering chords is beautiful.

 

USABILITY:

The ‘regen’ knob sets the number of repeats, the ‘mix’ knob controls the wet and dry signal, and the delay knob, the delay time. It’s your customary three-way delay control, with the added modification bonus, which can be adjusted internally with a screwdriver.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

This is a typically made MXR pedal, com- pact and sturdy, with a unique finish – in this case a sparkly lime green – that looks the part.

 

OVERALL:

MXR has long mastered the production of the modern analogue pedal. The Carbon Copy Analog Delay is widely used by guitarists, so it’s no surprise that they have released this alternative – their differing sonic focus suggests they would work well when played together. Building upon an already successful formula, the Bright Delay is a nice point of difference and a worthwhile addition.

 

BY CHRIS SCOTT

 

Caroline Kilobyte Lo-Fi Delay

EFFECT: DELAY | RRP: $289 | DISTRIBUTOR: SIGNAL CHAIN

 

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Any delay enthusiast will get a kick out of this. It’s a knockout punch as far as delay pedals are concerned.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

This is a fun and rewarding pedal that lends itself to endless experimentation. The analogue signal runs through a +21db boost/overdrive preamp that can throw its weight around, and a lo-fi delay chip that sings ‘80s bliss. Level, attack, sum, clock, modulation and a havoc footswitch all interact and intertwine to create mesmeric sounds and pure, vibrant tones – it’s really a joy to play.

 

USABILITY:

Each control on the Kilobyte has a purpose and an impact. For a wall of distortion and lo-fi noise simply max out the attack. Both the attack and the level knobs are forceful and have the ability to carve out a place 
in a crowded mix. The sum knob decides the number of repeats and, when turned up, spirals into frenetic oscillation. As an alternative, there’s the ingenious havoc momentary footswitch, which produces a more controlled high-pass filtered oscillation.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

A built to last stompbox. The big knobs and fun-natured design suit its gigantic personality.

 

OVERALL:

The Kilobyte is an engrossing delay pedal with some truly inventive and pioneering features. The uncompromising quality
of tone is gratifying and unequivocally satisfying. Highly recommend.

 

BY CHRIS SCOTT

 

Ninevolt Relaxing Walrus Delay

EFFECT: DELAY | RRP: $124 | DISTRIBUTOR: HOT APPLE DISTRIBUTION

RECOMMENDED FOR:

Rock, pop, indie, funk and experimental players.

 

SOUND AND VERSATILITY:

Creating the Yambiko effect – the mystical and spiritual effect of echo in Japan’s mountains and valleys the Relaxing Walrus again comes with Ninevolt’s hip character treatment. Spiel aside the pedal’s delay times range from 1ms to 1250ms so there’s quite a range to work with. I could dial in some Police-esque repeats, subtle widening or bigger repeat rhythmic tones. Plus, at max settings the RW will self-oscillate and create all sorts of whacky, glitch, psychedelic mayhem.

 

USABILITY:

This isn’t your over the top super ash NASA approved delay pedal that will cover every gig you’ve ever played, but it is a good sounding flexible delay that can do slap back, slightly spacious, bigger dirty solo delay tones and some atmospheric chord stuff.

 

CONSTRUCTION:

No crazy bells and whistles here on the RW. Just time, blend and repeat controls that work smoothly. It also features some funky graphics from the ever popular Jonas Claeson.

 

OVERALL:

Enough control to get a number of gigging tones and can work as a set and forget delay or act a little more in your face if needed. Again the Ninevolt nice price factor is a welcome addition and not just a ‘pretty good for the price’. Definitely worth a look it you want a straight for- ward good sounding delay.

 

BY NICK BROWN 

 

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