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Please guys, school me about delays

Discussion in 'The Effect effect' started by QReuCk, Jul 11, 2017.

  1. QReuCk

    QReuCk Strat-Talker

    Apr 17, 2014
    Hi guys, been a long time.

    Since the last time I visited the site about one year ago, my band has completely redefined its style. We still are stubborns playing our own music and mostly improvising it. but there have been big changes:
    - the other guitarist now plays mostly an analog keyboard with a bunch of crazy modulation effects onboard. He still plays guitar on some songs where we deem it appropriate, but for all the new stuff, it's about crazy noises from the keyboard.
    - the saxo still plays the saxo, but he uses a lot of effects as well. In the style of Guillaume Perret for those who know him. Pretty modern stuff.
    In short, we transitionned from some blues-jazz-pop-rock into something more electro-jazz-rock.

    I currently still have a very modest pedal board for which the only noticeable effect is a DB2w, and I have the inboard reverb of my trademark 120. So my sound is very raw, either fenderish clean or overdriven.
    On some parts, I can get away with it pretty well as a raw guitar sound can bring some nice contrast to the more electronic sounds of the others, but sometimes, it's simply too raw for what I intend to play.
    After having heard a few demos, I kind of think adding a delay to the board would be a good idea.
    My intention is to keep playing raw where it works, but I would be happy if I had something that enables me to:
    1° add a bit more texture to some clean chording, pretty much as a faux reverb-like thing with more 3D echos than real reverb
    2° fatten the sound without dirtying it too much for soloes
    3° maybe going a bit more adventureous with some auto harmonization on melodic phrases
    4° not critical, but as a bonus, I could find some creative use for reverse delay if it's there.

    My current opinion is this: 1° is pretty much possible with almost any kind of delay pedal on the market. 2° could probably also work with any, but maybe more tastefull with analog delays. 3° seems to require a tap tempo feature to sound the best, which seems to exist mainly on digital delays and 4° probably exists on digital only (but that would just be a bonus for exploring new possibilities, and I already have some playing tricks if I need to get crazy sounds, so not a decision changer).

    Do you have any comment/remarks about what I currently believe to be true? Any comments from your experience with using delays to achieve these type of things?

    From the ease of use point of view, I understand all those functions require very different settings if not different pedals altogether. Do some of you use several different settings in a set on the same pedal? Is it difficult to change in-between songs?

    What I'm trying to determine for now is do I try to seek a do-it-all pedal and assume I'll be able to change from one setting to the other without too much hassle, or do I drop one or two of the intended purposes, buy first one analog delay for the arythmic stuff and plan on buying a good digital with tap tempo later?

    Opinions about all this?

  2. Tone Guru

    Tone Guru Senior Stratmaster

    Dec 13, 2011
    Music City TN
    Your first couple ideas sound to me like you want a "slap echo", a short delay in the 30-100msec range.
    Very simple devices will do this.
    The others are a bit more involved and require some more processing power.

    Changing between songs is the realm of programs or some really well designed presets.
    Probably better to have 2 boxes for this.

    I'd start by looking at the TC Electronic offerings, they have specialized in time based effects for the most part.
    I should add that I was lead to believe that the TC Corona chorus would do slap delay.
    It does to a certain extent, but if you want a nice '50s sounding slap effect you should go towards a box that's more geared for true short delays like one of the Flashback pedals.

  3. faustarp1000

    faustarp1000 Strat-Talker

    Apr 24, 2017
    Montreal, Canada
    Maybe a EHX memory man with hazarai? You can save you delay presets, there is a tap tempo footswitch, there is a reverse echo and it has a looper function too. I used to own one but I sold it, now I use a roland space echo. Cheers!

  4. PatoLoco

    PatoLoco Strat-Talker

    Aug 21, 2015
    Fullerton, CA
    TC electronics flashback
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  5. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member

    Jun 8, 2009
    Area 51
    Even better - a TC X4 or Triple Delay, which allow you to have options.

    Another option would be a TC Nova delay, which allows you to save up to 9 presets, has multiple delay styles including slapback, dynamic, reverse, ping-pong, pan - and within each you can vary from tape to digital and different subdivision and/or multitap options (I have like, 5 delays on my big board, but for travel I take just the Nova.)

    From your descriptions, it sounds like you would need something in the tape/analog voicing to allow the delays to stay out of the way of your direct signal.

    As for the "faux reverb," a great way to get this is to set a multi-tap delay with some modulation. This is a trick I learned from Eric Johnson and Andy Timmons both - EJ runs a Deluxe Memory Man into a tape echo, with the DMM at a dotted 1/8 offset from the tape echo - Andy runs a pair of DMM's for the same effect (lately he has been using a single Strymon Timeline set to "Dual" for the same multitap effect.)

    The problem with reverb is that while it sounds great up close, as the sound diffuses into the room you lose a lot of definition - the multitap analog/tape delay gives you that sort of faux-reverb sound without actual reverb to muddy things further.

    The Triple Delay by TC would allow you to stack delay models at different subdivisions from each other, so you could, say, set delay #1 as a DMM and delay #2 as an Echorec or a Tape delay.

    You can hear the effect here at 3:00:

    Andy's take at 3:56:

    I run my DMM into a Strymon El Capistan, which sounds like this:

    The Triple Delay by TC would allow you to stack delay models at different subdivisions from each other, so you could, say, set delay #1 as a DMM and delay #2 as an Echorec or a Tape delay.

  6. DIYrocker

    DIYrocker Senior Stratmaster

    Dec 16, 2013
    +1 to the Nova Delay. I have one that I modified so it has an external footswitch to cycle through the presets, and it easily fills all of my delay needs.

  7. Nasser

    Nasser Strat-Talk Member

    May 10, 2015
    Amman, Jordan
    TC just put out the Flashback 2 and it adds a few extra features and tone print slots. this would be a good choice:


  8. QReuCk

    QReuCk Strat-Talker

    Apr 17, 2014
    Ok guys, thanks for the kind advice. I played a bit with audacity and 2 multitrack recordings of my band. What I think I need is a delay with some sort of smouthness in the repeats (which I tend to associate with analog although there seem to exist digital ones which can emulate that), set with not that much feedback (one to 3 repeats), average or slightly lower than average mix (-12db at each repeat was my favorit setting on audacity) and delay time set roughly on (not dotted) 1/8. I think transitionning between song would be easy enough with a tap tempo, even without subdivisions setting.
    Also, after having listened to a few demos and specifically Mike Thorn's tone secret video, I think I will want to experiment on low mix and feedback settings with delay in front of dirt pedal.

    So I guess what I want is a delay with an analog feel, but tap tempo feature. Any model to recommand?

  9. Rastus

    Rastus Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 1, 2014

    I'd consider a multi-effects-unit, simply because of the versatility of real-time-adjustment, or patch pre-sets that you can pre-set yourself. ( Not to mention the new array of sounds found, for only a few $$$ more than a single stomp-box )

    Boss make an ME-70 & ME-80 multi-effects unit, that has a huge array of delay effects, both analog & digital, with all of the needs filled that you're claiming you need, including tap-tempo.

    I quite like both the digital & analog delay sounds found within my ME-70. Both sound warm & natural to my ears, with the digital being a little more definitive, each repeat.

    I would suggest that you have your drummer a-tune himself with a metronome, & it's beats-per-minute-count, for each song that you do...This will make your patch-setting & delay times in sync with the music, & a one-time-only hassle to set. And then, if needed, during a gig, a quick "rhythm-riff" before the next tune, will give the tempo of the tune to the rest of the band.

    Lots of options to choose from, have fun.


  10. jimyjazz

    jimyjazz Senior Stratmaster

    May 15, 2015
    New Zealand
    Boss DD7 are pretty versatile for a reasonable price.
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  11. Guitaraxe

    Guitaraxe Strat-O-Master

    Aug 22, 2015
    +1 on the DD7. I would add that to the "try out" list.
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  12. FormerTeleGuy

    FormerTeleGuy Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 17, 2013
    Oak Lawn, IL
    A TC Flashback or Boss DD-7 are great options. I own both and although the TC sounds a bit clearer, the Boss is great too.
    jimyjazz likes this.

  13. Highway Chile

    Highway Chile Strat-Talk Member

    Apr 19, 2012
    I'm not a huge delay guy (my only delay pedal during the past 20 years is my Maxon ad80 reissue). I think the simple 300ms analog delays can handle the OP's requirements (1) and (2), but for the rest, I would be tempted to go digital. 300ms is very limited, but it works for me. In fact, for big solos, I love to use my ad80 with both minimum delay time (10ms) and only one repeat.

  14. the dark sailor

    the dark sailor Strat-O-Master

    Dec 18, 2008
    south jersey
    Well, your guitar signal passes through the input in this pedal constructed devise, either it being metal or plastic, big or small. You push the button with your foot, toe, or finger and the signal gets changed by the electronics inside said pedal and when it comes out through the output it goes goes goes goes goes goes goes goes goes goes goes............until it fades all depending on how you adjust the knoby things on the top or side or front of said pedal.:confused: :confused: :confused: :whistling: :p.

  15. Raiders757

    Raiders757 Senior Stratmaster

    Sep 2, 2016
    An MXR Carbon Copy perfectly fits this bill. Sadly there is no tap tempo option. Still, it's an awesome delay pedal. Then again, a deluxe version will be out in a couple of months that has tap tempo and a few other options.

    The Boss DD7 being suggested is also a great option. You can't go wrong with one of those.

  16. dbbluesproject

    dbbluesproject Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 3, 2015
    I use an EHX Memory Man/hazarai.....fantastic will also do reverse better than any other i have's mono or stereo and to my ear has the most organic, smooth sounding delays.....i also use an EHX Memory Toy........if i just want a great mono delay without alot of bells/whistles.....also very organic sounding...I tried many before i found these...

  17. QReuCk

    QReuCk Strat-Talker

    Apr 17, 2014
    I think I'll have a try with the MXR Carbon copy first.
    Reason being I think I remember one of my bandmates have one and I don't think he's using it that much, so he could agree to let me try for a couple weeks. Then I'll have a clearer view about what works and what doesn't.
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  18. rolandson

    rolandson Senior Stratmaster

    Jul 13, 2015
    Aqua Puss.

  19. jimyjazz

    jimyjazz Senior Stratmaster

    May 15, 2015
    New Zealand
    I have a dd7 and a carbon copy and they are both great . I think you'll enjoy the mxr .
    Raiders757 likes this.

  20. TSims1

    TSims1 Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Aug 9, 2009
    Atlanta, GA
    Been loving my BOSS DD-500 all year. It'll do everything you want.

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