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End of Year Pedal-Chain Update - Final Formation - Class of 2020

Acoustic SimulatorAmbient EffectsAnasoundsBeat MachineBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCompressorCooper FXCrazy Tube CircuitsDelayDelay WorkstationDemon PedalsDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEarthQuaker DevicesEchoverbEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQEventideFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGuitar Synth and SequencerJackson AudioKeyztoneKlone and Transparent OverdriveKMA AudioLo-Fi DelayLooperMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMetal DistortionMidValleyFXModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOctaverOddball DelayOddball FuzzOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePhaserPitchPlate ReverbRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationRotary SpeakerShimmer ReverbShnobel ToneSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbStrymonTape DelayTC ElectronicThorpyFXTimmyToneczarTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveTweed Style OverdriveUtilityVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMEndOfYear700.jpg

And so here is the culmination of everything that happened to the pedal-chain in 2020.

 

There were quite a few more displacements than I had expected - all told 22 slots changed over this year - including 19 Brand New Pedals for 2020, then 3 slightly older pedals, and some incidentals.

 

The most significant shift, and the one that caused the most disruption was the arrival of Boss GT-1000 CORE in October. This is often the case when you bring in a big new pedal - and you need to...

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2020 Best of New Modulation, Pitch and Utility Pedals for the Year

Alexander PedalsAnasoundsBeat MachineBecos FXBig Ear PedalsBitcrushing and Lo-FiBossChorus and VibratoCompressorCooper FXCoppersoundDedalo FXDr ScientistDunlop EffectsElectro-HarmonixEmpress EffectsEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQFlangerFlower PedalsGlitchGuitar Synth and SequencerHamstead SoundworksHarmonizerHologram ElectronicsJAM PedalsLooperModulationModulation WorkstationMXROctaverOddball ModulationOld Blood Noise EndeavorsPhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingRock Fabrik EffectsRotary SpeakerSlicer and StutterSpaceman EffectsTC ElectronicTremoloUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVS AudioWah and Fixed WahWalrus Audio+-
2020GPXBestOfYearModulationEtc200.jpg

This is the fourth of the preliminary roundups - before I reveal the 25 or so ’Best of the Best of 2020’ - it covers most other pedal genres not yet feature - including in particularly modulation and utility types. Note though that there will be a couple more surprises in the final reckoning!

 

Unlike the Delay and Reverb category I actually own a few of these, while other outstanding ones are very high on the priority list for next year.

 

I own 7 of these all-told - ...

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12 Degrees of Transmogrification : 2020 Key Modulation Categories Edition

12 Degrees of SaturationA/DA AmpsAlexander PedalsAnasoundsBitcrushing and Lo-FiBossCatalinbreadChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCKK ElectronicsCoda EffectsCrazy Tube CircuitsCryBabyDawner Prince EffectsDigiTechDOD EffectsDryBell EffectsDunlop EffectsElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFeaturedFlangerFlower PedalsFunction F(X)IbanezJAM PedalsJHS PedalsKeeley EngineeringLovepedalMad Professor EffectsMalekko Heavy IndustryModulationMooerMr Black PedalsMu-TronMXRNative AudioNeo InstrumentsOneControlPhaserPigtronixRetro-SonicRotary SpeakerSentimental Bob ElectronicsSource AudioStone Deaf EffectsSubdecay EffectsSwindler EffectsTC ElectronicTone CityTremoloUni-Vibe and VibeVS AudioWalrus AudioWMD Devices+-
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This is the 4th of my recent ’12 Degrees’ Series - this time moving beyond the boundaries of gain / saturation into the area of modulation. There are of course many more than the 12 modulations I have selected here - there are aliasing, ring modulation and lo-fi signal degeneration effects as well as more complex multi-combo effects, splicers and complex pattern modulators - including for instance the excellent recent Big Ear Albie. Of course the more obscure the category of ...

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12 Degrees of Saturation - 2020 Key Fuzz Categories Edition

12 Degrees of SaturationAnalog.ManAnarchy AudioAnasoundsAnimal FactoryBasic AudioBearfoot FXBig Muff Style FuzzBigfoot FXBlack Cat PedalsBlammo ElectronicsCatalinbreadChase Bliss AudioChicago StompworksDanDrive PedalDanelectroDeadFXDistortion LimitedDunlop EffectsEl Músico Loco FXExpresso FXFeaturedFjord FuzzFredric EffectsFulltone EffectsFunction F(X)FuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzJAM PedalsJordan EffectsKeeley EngineeringKing Tone EffectsKO AmpsMaestro Style FuzzMaxonModulated FuzzMojo GearMojo Hand FXMonsterpieceMozztronicsMXRMythos PedalsNorth EffectsOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOneControlOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzPigDog PedalsPigtronixProAnalog DevicesReuss EffectsRoerich InstrumentsRonSoundSchu-ToneSilicon FuzzSitek Guitar ElectronicsSizzorfite StudioSkreddy PedalsSolidGoldFXStomp Under FootSuper-Fuzz StyleThorpyFXTone Bender Style FuzzTrefilio PedaisVahlbruch FXVick Audio+-
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This is probably the most anticipated of my 12 Degrees roundups - and is a touch more complex and different to the other 2 in the series. Within each category here there can be a huge difference in character and output - for instance with Fuzz Faces going from quite mild to rather searing Meathead and Regulus VIII levels of aggression. So the gradual step up in gain per category doesn’t apply here. And because of circuit variations and differences in components and construction, each and ...

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28 of the Best Compact Enclosure Phaser Pedals - 2020 Ultimate Selection

Alexander PedalsAnasoundsBossChase Bliss AudioCrazy Tube CircuitsDOD EffectsEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixFlattley Guitar PedalsGreenhouse EffectsJ RockettJAM PedalsJRADKeeley EngineeringMad Professor EffectsModulationMu-TronMXRNative AudioOld Blood Noise EndeavorsPhaserRetro-SonicSkreddy PedalsSolidGoldFXSubdecay EffectsTC ElectronicVahlbruch FXVein TapVFE PedalsWalrus AudioZvex+-
2020GPX28CompactPhasers700.jpg

This post actually came about in a rather random roundabout fashion while I’m still waiting for my Buffalo FX Flanger to arrive. The only one of my analog modulation pedals I haven’t rotated recently as such is my Chase Bliss Audio Wombtone MKII Analog Phaser. So I got to thinking if there was something in that area I might look towards - considering I had fairly recently updated all the other analog modulation slots.

 

I have 5 phasers already - including 3 from the top row ...

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End of July Pedal-Chain Update - Episode VI - Mercurial Conveyance!

Ambient EffectsAnasoundsBig Muff Style FuzzBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBuffalo FXChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXDemon PedalsDigital ReverbDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahExpresso FXFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzGFI SystemGlitchJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOverdriveRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbTone Bender Style FuzzToneQuestTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMJuly700V2.jpg

July has largely been a very decent month for me and culminated with the arrival of my twin new Expresso FX Dual Custom Fuzzes and my annual white whale as such - the Chase Bliss Audio Automatone Preamp MKII on this occasion.

 

It looks like 4 pedals failed to get over the line within the appointed time period - the longest-ranging of which is my Evil Pumpkin Modded DS-1 - which has been en-route from Kiev since June 12th and which I surely hoped should have landed by now.

 

My ...

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End of June Pedal-Chain Update - Episode V - A Disturbance in the Force!

Ambient EffectsAnasoundsBig Muff Style FuzzBixonicBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBuffalo FXChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFlangerFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGFI SystemGlitchGranular DelayJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveKuro Custom AudioMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneModulationModulation WorkstationOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePlate ReverbPreAmpRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReuss EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleThorpyFXTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMJune700V3.jpg

June hasn’t been a particularly kind month to me - in fact it’s been something of a difficult period - I was going to call this piece ’The Darkness Lingers’ but didn’t really want that particular NLP on this blog - which I try to keep as positive as is practically possible.

 

A number of ventures and collaborations I was working on this month came a cropper when the other collaborating parties somewhat inexplicably and suddenly ended their involvement - ...

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End of May Pedal-Chain Update - Episode IV - A New Hope!

Ambient EffectsAnasoundsBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGFI SystemGlitchJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveKuro Custom AudioMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMetal DistortionMI EffectsModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOddball ModulationOverdrivePhaserRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbSuper-Fuzz StyleThorpyFXToneQuestTremoloVox Style DistortionVS Audio+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMMay2700.jpg

May was the month that several things finally slotted into place - all my missing / presumed lost USA orders finally landed as did a few other pedals which had been somewhat lingering in the wild - so May delivered a pretty decent pedal yield overall in the end. I also got to be involved in a couple of exciting up-and-coming brands - Kuro Custom Audio of Italy and MidValleyFX of USA. I’ve already published a feature on the excellent Kuro Akuma Fiery Fuzz as featured on slot #5, and hope ...

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End of April Pedal-Chain Update - Covid-19 Lost in the Post Edition

Ambient EffectsAnasoundsBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Breaker Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCooper FXDigital ReverbDistortionDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveEarthQuaker DevicesElectro-HarmonixEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzGFI SystemGlitchGuitar Synth and SequencerJackson AudioKlone and Transparent OverdriveMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOverdriveRat Style FuzzRedbeard EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSinvertekSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbThorpyFXTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveVA AudioVox Style Distortion+-
2020GPXSKSignalChainPostNAMMApril700V2.jpg

So a lot has changed during the month of April - we’ve had some thoroughly exciting and invigorating new product launches, while three of my American acquisitions are seemingly lost by USPS - hopefully they will materialise some day, but for one of them there have been no tracking updates for over a month now - which is somewhat alarming. As the eternal optimist, I can only hope that things right themselves eventually. I had already determined that my pedal-acquisition would go on semi-...

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Recent Growth in DIY Kit Pedals gives some of you something extra to do during Coronavirus Self-Isolation

Aion ElectronicsAll-PedalAnasoundsBoostBoost and OverdriveBuild Your Own CloneBYOCDistortionDistortion LimitedDriveDual-DriveFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionFX TeacherJHS PedalsLawrence Petross DesignModulationMulti-DriveMythos PedalsOverdrivePedalPCBRat Style FuzzStewMacTremolo+-
2020GPXDIYPedals700.jpg

I started this post quite a while ago, but am glad I left it to mature for a while as so much has happened / changed in the interim. Obviously we are right in the middle of a Pandemic and some people have a lot more time on their hands these days, while ironically I have rarely been busier.

 

The above pictured selection has changed markedly in just a few months as there are more and more mainstream brands seemingly getting involved with pedal kits of their own. It makes a lot of sense ...

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