Posts tagged ‘distortion’

29/03/2017

Now on SoundCloud – Source Audio FX

All guitar tracks recorded using the LA Lady overdrive, Gemini chorus and Nemesis delay pedals plugged into a Juketone True Blood valve amplifier (miked up with a Shure SM57).

• Guitar used: Fender Stratocaster

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01/03/2017

Tulossa *** Coming soon ** Source Audio

Contact: Musamaailma

10/09/2015

Review: Bogner Harlow, Wessex and Burnley

Reinhold Bogner

This time Kitarablogi has had the pleasure to review the fruits of a cooperation between two legendary designers:

Custom amp guru Reinhold Bogner

Rupert Neve

…and the grand old man of recording studio electronics Rupert Neve have unveiled a line of three Bogner effect pedals (made in the USA), which were designed around Rupert Neve’s famous audio transformers.

Bogner – Neve transformer

Audio transformers are rarely seen (or mentioned) when it comes to pedal effects, for both reasons of price and mass production.

In valve amplifiers audio transformers play a crucial role, because they are the last stage before the signal reaches the speaker. Audio transformers ”translate” the signal for the speaker, which is why they have a direct impact on the tone and dynamic behaviour of a tube amplifier.

Bogner-pedals teaser – w lights

At the moment three different Bogner/Neve-pedals are available – the Harlow booster (current price in Finland: 235 €), the Wessex overdrive (229 €), and the Burnley distortion (235 €).

Each pedal has a glowing ”eye” indicating the current signal strength of the stompbox.

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Bogner Harlow – with box

The Bogner Harlow gives you two effects in one pedal:

In addition to it’s boost function, the Harlow also incorporates Bogner’s Bloom compression circuit, which promises to give you a very natural, three-dimensional and musical type of compression.

You’ll find three control knobs on the Harlow – a level control for the booster, a Bloom-control for the compressor, and a master tone.

Bogner Harlow – full front 2

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Bogner Wessex – with box

Bogner’s Wessex is the overdrive pedal in the Bogner/Neve-family.

In addition to its gain and level controls the Wessex also includes a two-band EQ, as well as a E/N-switch. ”N” stands for ”normal” and this mode will give you a slightly more traditional, mid-range centred sound. Switching to ”E” (for ”enhanced”) there’s more gain on tap, coupled with a fatter, more full-range tone.

Bogner Wessex – full front 2

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Bogner Burnley – with box

The third pedal, the Bogner Burnley, is a distortion effect.

The Burnley offers three controls – level, gain and tone – plus an F/T-switch. ”T” (for ”tight”) promises you a more aggressive distortion effect than the warmer and fatter ”F” mode.

Bogner Burnley – full front 2

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Bogner Harlow – inside

Both Mr Bogner and Mr Neve are known for their uncompromising commitment to both sound and workmanship. This commitment is well represented in this range of pedal effects.

In the Bogner-pedals the circuit board is hidden inside a black plastic box. This is a workable solution weighing the risk of direct backwards engineering against the possible future need for repair or servicing. Components completely covered in black resin (some boutique manufacturers do this) are the bane of any guitar technician!

As you can clearly see in the pictures, all three stompboxes can be run using a nine volt battery or an external PSU (using the Boss-standard).

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Bogner Harlow – left 2

Bogner doesn’t divulge the precise amount of boost that can be had from the Harlow, but let me tell you it will most probably be enough to overdrive even the cleanest of amplifiers.

The Bloom-circuit in the Bogner Harlow sounds deliciously chewy and reacts very musically.

Bogner’s Harlow is the type of pedal you want to leave on the whole time, because any guitar will sound better with this box running. This pedal also reacts very well to changes in your guitar’s volume control setting.

There’s a nice attack click, when played with a Stratocaster:

The Harlow stays clear and clean, even when you play a neck humbucker (I’m using my Hamer USA Studio Custom):

Bogner Wessex – right 2

The overdrive and distortion tones of Bogner amplifiers are already the stuff of legend, and the amp guru has managed to pack these sounds into two Bogner/Neve-pedals.

The Bogner Wessex luckily isn’t just another Tubescreamer clone; instead this stompbox gives you Mr Bogner’s vision of the perfect overdrive sound.

Even though there’s a healthy amount of gain on offer in the Wessex, the sound always stays transparent and well-defined. This pedal also keeps the inherent character of your guitar intact.

Wessex’s Enhanced mode will even make your vintage-styled Strat sing:

On the other hand there won’t be any boxiness, or mud, when using humbuckers:

Bogner Burnley – left 2

If you’re a Hendrix fan you should definitely try the Burnley’s Fat mode. It will make your Strat sing and growl in Woodstock-fashion, even when played into a clean amp channel at bedroom volume levels:

Bogner’s Burnley, too, is sensitive to guitar volume changes. Using Tight mode and humbuckers will give you a modern distortion tone:

Bogner-pedals teaser

Here’s the audio track off the Youtube video. All guitar parts have been played on a P-90-equipped Gibson Les Paul Junior:

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Bogner Harlow – right 2

Bogner Wessex – left 2

Bogner Burnley – right 2

Rupert Neve and Reinhold Bogner aren’t men ho do things by half – and these pedals are a fitting testament to this commitment!

The Bogner/Neve-series of guitar effects offers you Bogner’s boutique tones in a very compact guise, and at a very fair price. Try these pedals out – you won’t be disappointed!

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Bogner Amplification Harlow, Wessex & Burnley

Harlow – 235 €

Wessex – 229 €

Burnley – 235 €

Finnish distributor: Musamaailma

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Pros:

+ workmanship

+ compact size

+ genuine boutique amp tones

25/03/2015

Testipenkissä: Bogner Harlow, Wessex ja Burnley

Reinhold Bogner

Tällä kertaa Kitarablogissa on testissä kahden legendan yhteistyön hedelmät:

Saksalaisamerikkalainen vahvistinguru Reinhold Bogner

Rupert Neve

…ja studiotekniikan grand old man Rupert Neve esittelivät hiljattain USA:ssa valmistetun Bogner kitaraefektimalliston, jossa käytetään Rupert Neve Designsin erikoisvalmisteisia audiomuuntajia.

Bogner – Neve transformer

Audiomuuntajia nähdään perinteisesti erittäin harvoin lattiaefekteissä, sekä kustannus- että tuotannollisista syistä.

Putkivahvistimissa audiomuuntajalla on sen sijaan keskeinen rooli, mikä tulee syntyvän kitarasoundin äänenlaatuun ja dynamiikkaan. Laadukas audiomuuntaja vahvistaa audiosignaalia niin, että sen dynamiikka ja soundi pysyvät täysin ehjinä ja muuttamattomina.

Bogner-pedals teaser – w lights

Tällä hetkellä Bogner/Neve-mallisto koostuu kolmesta pedaaleista – Harlow-boosteri (235 €), Wessex-overdrive (229 €), sekä Burnley-distortion (235 €).

Kaikissa pedaaleissa on optisena lisämausteena värisilmä, josta näkyy läpikulkevan signaalin voimakkuus.

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Bogner Harlow – with box

Bogner Harlow tarjoaa kaksi efektiä samassa kuoressa:

Boost-vahvistuksen lisäksi Harlow-pedaalissa on myös Bognerin kehittämä Bloom-kompressori, jolle luvataan hyvin orgaanista, kolmiulotteista ja musikaalista soundia.

Harlow:ssa on kolme säädintä – Level-nuppi boostille, Bloom-säädin kompressiolle, sekä yleis-Tone.

Bogner Harlow – full front 2

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Bogner Wessex – with box

Bogner Wessex on Bogner/Neve-malliston overdrive-tyyppinen säröpedaali.

Gain- ja Level-säätimien lisäksi Wessexissä on kaksikaistainen EQ, sekä E/N-kytkin. N-asennossa (= normal) Wessexin soundi on perinteisempi, siis hieman keskiäänivoittoinen, kun taas minikytkimen E-asennossa (= enhanced) efektistä lähtee entistä voimakkaampi, maukkaampi ja laajempi soundimaailma.

Bogner Wessex – full front 2

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Bogner Burnley – with box

Bogner Burnley on tämän kolmikon distortion-särö.

Burnleystä löytyy kolme säädintä – Level, Gain ja Tone – sekä F/T-minikytkin. T-asennossa (= tight) Burnleyn soundikirjo on aggressiivisempi ja tiukempi kuin selvästi muhkeammassa F-vaihtoehdossa (= fat).

Bogner Burnley – full front 2

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Bogner Harlow – inside

Sekä Bogner että Neve ovat legendaaristen soundien lisäksi tunnettuja myös tuotteidensa kompromissittomasta laadusta ja siististä työnjäljestä, mikä näkyy hyvin myös Bogner/Neve-pedaalien toteutuksessa.

Bognerin piirilevy jää piiloon mustan muovikuvun alle. Ratkaisu estää edes hieman laitteen suoraa kopiointia, mutta ei vaikeuta mahdollisia korjauksia samalla tavalla kuin esimerkiksi mustaan hartsiin valettu elektroniikka.

Kuten kuvasta näkyy, kaikkia kolmea efektipedaalia voi käyttää joko yhdellä yhdeksän voltin paristolla tai (Boss-standardin mukaisella) virtalähteellä.

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Bogner Harlow – left 2

Bogner ei kerro missään Harlow-pedaalin tarkkoja vahvistusmääriä, mutta testin perusteella voin vain todeta, että sitä ääntä kyllä riittää. Jos siihen on tarve, pystyy tällä boosterilla yliohjaamaan minkä vahvistimen tahansa!

Bogner Harlow:n Bloom-kompressori kuulostaa erittäin maukkaalta ja musikaaliselta.

Bognerin Harlow on juuri sellainen kitaraefekti, jota haluaa pitää koko ajan päälle, koska kitara kuin kitara soi yksinkertaisesti kauneimmin ajettuna sen läpi. Tämä maustepurkki reagoi mallikkaasti myös kitaran volume-säätimeen.

Straton soundissa kuulee mukavasti atakin klikkiä:

Harlow pysyy myös selkeänä silloin, kun sen läpi soitetaan (Hamer USA -kitaran) kaulahumbuckerilla:

Bogner Wessex – right 2

Bogner-vahvistimien särösoundit ovat legendaarisia, ja mestari on onnistunut paketoimaan ne Bogner/Neve-sarjan kahteen särölootaan.

Bogner Wessex ei ole (onneksi) jälleen yksi Tubescreamer-klooni, vaan vahvistingurun oma näkemys täydellisestä overdrive-pedaalista.

Wessex tarjoaa runsaasti gainia, mutta soundi pysyy aina selkeänä ja erottelevana, eikä mene koskaan mössöksi. Myös kitaran oma luonne säilyy esimerkillisesti.

Wessexin Enhanced-moodin ansiosta jopa vintage-tyylinen Stratocaster soi lihaksikkaasti:

Tämä overdrive-pedaali ei honota, vaan soundi pysyy myös humbuckereiden kanssa selkeänä ja maukkaana:

Bogner Burnley – left 2

Burnleyn Fat-moodin kautta jokainen Hendrix-fani löytää varmasti soundillisen nirvanansa. Jopa puhtaalla vahvistimella ja olohuonevolyymillä Strato soi kuin Woodstockissa konsanaan:

Myös Bognerin Burnley reagoi todella hyvin (kitaran) volume-potikan muutoksiin. Tight-moodissa humbuckerilla varustetulta kitaralta lähtee tiukka ja nykyaikainen särösoundi:

Bogner-pedals teaser

Tässä vielä videon ääniraita, jossa soitan kaikki kitaraosuudet yhdellä P-90-mikrofonilla varustetulla Gibson Les Paul Juniorilla:

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Bogner Harlow – right 2

Bogner Wessex – left 2

Bogner Burnley – right 2

Rupert Neve ja Reinhold Bogner eivät ole miehiä, jotka jättävät asiat puolitiehen, ja sen kyllä huomaa!

Bogner/Neve-sarjan efektipedaalit tarjoavat Bognerin boutique-luokan soundeja mukavan kompaktissa muodossa kilpailukykyiseen hintaan. Kolmikko on mielestäni ehdottomasti kokeilemisen arvoinen!

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Bogner Amplification Harlow, Wessex & Burnley

Harlow – 235 €

Wessex – 229 €

Burnley – 235 €

Maahantuoja: Musamaailma

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Plussat:

+ työnjälki

+ kompakti koko

+ boutique-luokan soundi

20/03/2015

Bogner/Neve Harlow, Wessex + Burnley – The Kitarablogi-video

Maahantuoja: Musamaailma

18/03/2015

Bogner/Neve Harlow, Wessex + Burnley – The Kitarablogi-demo

Bogner-pedals teaser – w lights

Maahantuoja: Musamaailma

16/03/2015

Työn alla –– Work in progress –– Bogner & Rupert Neve

Bogner-pedals teaser

Maahantuoja: Musamaailma

06/03/2015

Bogner & Rupert Neve *** testi tulossa *** review coming soon

BOGNER-NEVE

Maahantuoja: Musamaailma

03/12/2014

Review: Boss Waza Craft BD-2W + SD-1W

bd-2w_angle_zoom_gal

sd-1w_side_zoom_gal

Boss’ Waza Craft pedals are the company’s brand-new all-analogue, top-of-the line compact effects. The Waza Craft range has been designed to give the quality-conscious guitarist the full boutique-pedal experience in the well-loved Boss format.

The Japanese word ”waza” can be translated as art, artistry or technology, and hints at the fact that the three new pedals (the overdrives reviewed here, plus the DM-2W delay) are a return to old-school, all-analogue circuitry, and that the effects are factory-modded for your convenience.

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bd-2w_top_gal

The Boss Blues Driver BD-2W Waza Craft (current price in Finland around 155 €) is a ”waza-treated” update of the popular Blues Driver overdrive.

In the late 1970s Boss came up with the now-legendary, compact guitar pedal format, which has since become an industry standard. The typical Boss pedal is made from a cast metal casing with the quick-access battery compartment tucked away beneath the pedal’s switch flap.

The BD-2W comes with the standard three controls for Gain, Tone and Level.

The Waza Craft range’s special feature lies in their twin mode set-up. You can use the mini-switch to toggle between Standard- and Custom-mode. Standard will give you a boutique version of the regular Boss Blues Driver experience, while Custom ups the ante by offering you a wider dynamic range, as well as a warmer tonality with added top-end sparkle.

The first clip gives you an idea of the BD-2W’s sound with the Gain control at 12 o’clock. The first half is played in Standard-mode, switching over to Custom-mode for the second half:

For the second clip I turned Gain up to full:

bd-2w_angle_gal

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sd-1w_top_gal

The Boss Super OverDrive SD-1W Waza Craft (current price in Finland around 155 €) is the top-of-the-line version of the company’s yellow-clad classic.

The name gives it away – we’re looking at an overdrive stompbox, so we should expect a dynamic performance with a dense mid-range. As a rule of thumb, distortion-type effects tend to have more bite and a creamier compression than an overdrive.

The Boss SD-1W, too, sports three controls – Drive, Tone and Level – and a mode switch. Standard-mode is meant to give you an upmarket counterpart of the regular SD-1 pedal, while Custom-mode promises a wider frequency range (especially handy for ultra-low tunings).

Here’s a clip of the SD-1W with Drive set to 12 o’clock. Standard-mode comes first, followed by Custom-mode:

And this will give you an idea of this pedal’s sound with Drive turned all the way up:

sd-1w_angle_gal

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bd-2w_angle_2_gal

What do terms like ”boutique-pedal” and ”premium range” really mean?

In the case of the Waza Craft pedals the answer lies in both the sound and the ”feel” of these effects:

Both overdrive boxes sound even creamier than the standard versions, while also adding a small degree of clarity to proceedings. These premium versions also manage to keep hiss levels even lower than their ”ordinary” counterparts. Both the BD-2W and the SD-1W feel somewhat more organic and responsive, when compared to their (well-made) standard range brethren. The overdrive tones are very natural, and both effects react very nicely to changes in playing dynamics or guitar volume settings. You never get the feeling of the effect being pasted on, instead there’s a real interaction going on between the player, his guitar and the effect pedal.

In isolation Boss’ Waza Craft overdrives might even seem a little underwhelming, but when you A/B them with their standard series counterparts the differences become quite clear rather quickly. Don’t get me wrong, the standard versions are reliable industry standards with a more than decent sound, but for the ultimate Boss-experience you should take the path to Waza Craft.

sd-1w_angle_2_gal

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Boss BD-2W + SD-1W Waza Craft

approx. 155 €

Finnish distribution: Roland Suomi

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Pros:

+ classic format

+ all-analogue

+ two modes

+ sound

02/12/2014

Review: JAM Pedals

JAM Pedals is a Greek maker of boutique effect pedals, whose products are now available in Finland, too (distributed by R-Jam Group).

JAM Pedals’ products are all-analogue, built by hand from first-rate components. Some models even rely on hard to come by NOS-chips and -transistors for their sound.

Most JAM-models can also be ordered in point-to-point versions, or with customised specifications and/or artwork.

All JAM Pedals come in hand-painted, unique designs, and are delivered with a cloth sack for storage, as well as a JAM-logo’d plectrum.

All the effects tested in this review run on a nine volt battery or a (Boss-type) power supply (not included).

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Jam pedals – Tube Dreamer 58 + bag

JAM Pedals offers four different versions of its Tube Dreamer overdrive pedal.

Their compact Tube Dreamer 58 is the company’s take on the ultimate Ibanez Tube Screamer 808 pedal. The circuit is built around an original JRC4558D-chip.

Jam pedals – Tube Dreamer 58 pic 1

The JAM Tube Dreamer 58 (current price in Finland: 185 €) wins you over with a healthy dose of that classic, creamy Tube Screamer mid-range. The TD58’s forte, though, is the vastly improved dynamic range of the JAM-model, and the more organic, amp-like overdrive structure, achieved by using three diodes for asymmetrical clipping.

This sound clip – like all the others in this review – has been recorded using a Fender Stratocaster and a Blackstar HT-1R valve combo:

Jam pedals – Tube Dreamer 58 pic 2

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Jam pedals – Tube Dreamer+ and bag

The flagship model Tube Dreamer pedal is called the JAM Tube Dreamer+ (current price in Finland: 225 €), and is the deluxe version of the JAM Tube Dreamer 72, which is designed a ”secret chip”.

Jam pedals – Tube Dreamer+ pic 1

The Plus-version adds a high-gain-/boost-circuit (left footswitch) on top of the moderate-gain overdrive section (right footswitch).

The Tube Dreamer+ is shipped with the high-gain circuit adding only more gain to proceedings, but you can also adjust the high-gain circuit’s internal trimmer to deliver copious amounts of signal boost, whenever it is switched on.

In terms of its sound, the Tube Dreamer+ gives more than a passing nod to 1970s Blues Rock and Heavy Metal. Despite its high-gain boost, this JAM-model hasn’t been designed for contemporary Thrash Metal.

Jam pedals – Tube Dreamer+ pic 2

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Jam pedals – Red Muck + bag

JAM Pedals’ stompbox fuzz is called Red Muck, and it comes in a Soviet-inspired colour scheme, complete with hammer and sickle graphics.

Jam pedals – Red Muck pic 1

The starting points for the Red Muck fuzz’ (current price in Finland: 209 €) tone were the classic, early Big Muff -sounds.

JAM has refined the original fuzz character to come up with a much more versatile pedal. JAM’s Red Muck reacts extremely well to changes in the guitar’s volume knob settings, while the overall delivery is noticeably fatter and creamier, when compared to many other fuzz-effects. This pedal also takes well to full chords, and doesn’t mush up so quickly.

I have to admit that JAM’s Red Muck has quickly become my favourite fuzz box.

Listen for the tonal changes, as I slowly raise the volume control at the beginning of this clip:

Jam pedals – Red Muck pic 2

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Jam pedals – Waterfall + bag

The JAM WaterFall (259 €) is a dual-function effect pedal, offering chorus and vibrato in one compact package.

Jam pedals – Waterfall pic 1

The two effects in the WaterFall have been designed around two legendary Panasonic-chips (the MN3101 and the MN3007), on which some of the earliest Boss modulation effects were also based.

The mini-switch on the right is for selecting the effect – chorus or vibrato (v) – while the switch on the opposite side lets you choose between a milder, vintage (-) version of the chosen effect, or its more drastic, modern counterpart.

The WaterFall’s chorus is simply superb, sounding very natural and musical:

Vibrato may not be the most-commonly used effect, but the WaterFall’s reading must surely be one of the sweetest-sounding there is:

Jam pedals – Waterfall pic 2

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Jam pedals – Ripple + bag

JAM Pedals’ The Ripple (199 €) is an easy-to-use phaser. There’s only a single Speed-control for the effect, and that’s all.

Jam pedals – Ripple pic 1

This is one lush-sounding phaser – you can’t get more musical than this! The Ripple has a rich and organic tone, broadening your guitar sound, yet it never seems to usurp the show or hog the limelight.

Jam pedals – Ripple pic 2

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Jam pedals – Delay Llama + bag

The Delay Llama?! The guys at JAM HQ sure do have a sense of humour!

JAM’s Delay Llama (265 €) is an analogue, lo-fi delay pedal in the spirit of the early Eighties.

Jam pedals – Delay Llama pic 1

The Delay Llama features a classic bucket-brigade circuit, which uses an updated version Panasonic’s legendary MN3205-chip. The maximum delay time offered is approximately 600 ms. An internal trim port allows you to adjust the maximum number of repeats available from the Repeats-control.

The Delay Llama will bring sonic fulfilment to fans of the BBD-sound – there’s plenty of grease on tap, and each new repeat degenerates noticeably from the one before. Factory settings even allow for the Repeat-control to cause infinite and distorting feedback loops, something for the fans of psychedelic and experimental music.

Jam pedals – Delay Llama pic 2

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Jam pedals – teaser

In my opinion, these JAM Pedals offer the genuine boutique pedal experience at fair prices! They sound great, they look cool, their noise floor is low, and the pedals consume surprisingly little (battery) power. Give them a try!

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JAM Pedals

effect pedals from Greece

Tube Dreamer 58 – 185 €

Tube Dreamer+ – 225 €

Red Muck – 209 €

WaterFall – 259 €

The Ripple – 199 €

Delay Llama – 265 €

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Pros:

+ handmade

+ hand-painted

+ sound

+ low power consumption