October 20, 2010
Vintage-inspired wah with sweep contours and 5-band EQ
|Download Example 1|
Strat clean tone with both sweep settings
|Download Example 2|
Les Paul/Hartman Germanium Fuzz with RMC-8
|Download Example 3|
Les Paul clean cycling through graphic EQ settings
|Clips recorded with a 3rd Power American Dream, Shure SM57 into a Chandler LTD-1 mic pre directly into Pro Tools.|
The RMC8-Guitar Eqwahlyzer is modeled on the benchmark tone of mid-’60s, Italian-built Vox wahs. But it adds a pair of sweep contours and a 5-band graphic EQ to optimize the wah’s voice for different playing styles and gear.
Glitter and Control
Packaged in a new, longer shell, the true bypass RMC8 is finished in a cool multi-sparkle graphite grey that’s a dead ringer for my ’70s banana bike seat or a vintage vinyl speedboat interior. Up at the top of the pedal is the 5-band graphic EQ with +/-15 dB center-detent sliders, an LED indicator that lights to show the EQ circuit is active, and a push button that engages the EQ.
Under the rocker, a mini toggle switch changes the sweep contour from either a NOS Icar-taper pot to an expanded-range taper that’s reminiscent of an aged Icar-taper ROC-POT 5.2 wah pot. You access the RMC8’s 9V battery by removing the underside plate, which is attached by four screws that pass through the pedal’s rubber feet. Conveniently, changing the battery doesn’t require a screwdriver. An AC adapter input is located just below the output jack on the left side of the pedal.
According to Teese, the basic RMC8 circuit is blueprinted from engineer Brad Plunkett’s mid-’60s design for the Italian Vox Clyde McCoy, the pedal that represents quintessential wah tone for many players. The sweep was smooth and quiet in both toggle positions. I preferred the slower sweep of the “aged” setting, as it enabled me to explore the tonal nuances of each position of the sweep. That said, the NOS setting was equally cool, imparting a slightly more aggressive snarl and granting quicker access to the extreme ranges.
The RMC8 really started to speak when I added a little more gain on my test amps. At this point, I enhanced the harmonics in my tone by engaging the EQ. As I started tweaking the settings, I discovered the utility of Teese’s design. Raising the 160 Hz slider a little and dipping at 2.5 kHz created one of the thickest wah sounds I’ve ever experienced. This setting allowed me to push the pedal without fear of cutting heads off with runaway treble.
Plugging in different guitars made me appreciate the EQ even more. Strats liked some of the highs rolled off, Les Pauls liked a 1 kHz boost and my P-90 guitars preferred a little 160 Hz boost.
No matter what combination of guitars and amps I used, the RMC8 delivered in spades. The tone was always lush, the sweep was smooth and free of scratchiness, and the sonic flexibility was nearly unlimited. It can be easy to grow weary of a wah when it’s a one-trick pony. But there’s almost no end to what the RMC8 can deliver, which makes it a potent musical asset—one that can extend your voice as a player and play an invaluable role in your pedalboard.
you want a classically voiced wah with modern flexibility.
you use your wah once a year.
Street $269 - Real McCoy Custom - realmccoycustom.com
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