Guitar pedal evolution. We were faced with the difficult decision to take off pedals from our pedalboard to make space for new ones. Too difficult. So we didn’t. Instead… we got a second board 😉
Temple Audio Duo 17 arrived to help us host 3 new pedals we have had our sights on for quite some time. And so we reconfigured the whole signal chain. And the MIDI chain. Again. These three bad boys are the VENTRIS reverb, IRIDIUM amp modeler and HEDRA triple pitch shifter/delay.
Guitar synthesizer ENZO (yellow machine) was moved to the new (smaller) board to make space for the VENTRIS reverb from Source Audio (last row, second from right). We have wanted to have a second reverb to overlay on top of Strymon’s BIGSKY and the VENTRIS filled the bill perfectly. Two reverbs in one box, each with 14 different engines, which can be run in parallel or series. In essence, we got 2 more reverbs, for awesome ambient soundscapes. The VENTRIS is placed downstream from the BIGSKY in the signal chain.
Alongside the ENZO on the second board, we got the IRIDIUM from Strymon. Again, we have longed for a proper amp simulator for a long time, and when Strymon announced the IRIDIUM, we knew the time was right. IRIDIUM boasts sophisticated simulators for three of the most iconic guitar amplifiers: Fender Reverb Delux, VOX AC30, and Marshall Plexi. After the amp, it runs a speaker simulator based on Impulse Responses (IRs), which includes 9 onboard IR (3 per amp) and a collection of IRs that can be inserted from a computer. We have left our trusty ICONOCLAST speaker simulator at the end of the chain, in a fairly neutral setting to allow further EQ and also because of its wonderful noise gate and headphone output. We wanted the headphone out at the very end of the chain, naturally. IRIDIUM is placed after ENZO, but before the delays and reverbs. This is because we want to get some dirty tones from IRIDIUM and running delays in front would not have sounded very nice.
Finally is the magic HEDRA from Meris, aslo placed in the new smaller board. Difficult to describe HEDRA in few words. Meris says it is a “3-Voice Rhythmic Pitch Shifter”. 3 voices, in rhythm combine with the original voice to create amazing arpeggiated harmonies. Each voice can be delayed and fed back in 4 intricate matrices for either predictable or unpredictable results. It’s a universe on its own and we have got lost wandering inside its beauty numerous times. HEDRA is placed after IRIDIUM in the smaller board.
The big board connects to the small board through an effects loop, sending out after the MIMIQ doubler (where everything in the boards goes stereo). In the smaller board, the chain goes ENZO→IRIDIUM→HEDRA and then returns to the bigger board, continuing with DIG→BIGSKY→VENTRIS→DITTOX4→
ICONOCLAST. As mentioned before, the DITTOX4 looper can be switched in front of the ENZO with two small switches from the side of the big board. All new pedals are MIDI controlled and so hooked to our trusty MC6 MkII MIDI controller from MorningStar, still sitting in the front of the bigger board. Which meant that we also needed a MIDI connection between the two boards.
Finally, the bigger board can run by itself without the smaller one as well. Disconnecting the boards short-circuits the effects loop and keeps the signal chain running from MIMIQ to DIG. Nifty!