This Long Beach builder's latest features cool real-time control options and demented delay for days.
Demented delay for days. Tap-tempo modulation. Real-time control. Excellent build quality.
No tap-tempo delay. Pricy.
Stacks FX Thsee Anomaly
Ease of Use:
The Thsee Anomaly is a large-format delay pedal from Stacks FX, a boutique builder from Long Beach, California. Unlike all those modern digital delays that go to great lengths to mimic analog sounds, Thsee Anomaly marches in the opposite direction. It revels in its digital-ness, with an emphasis on glitches, noise, and other, um … anomalies.
The pedal’s core processor is the PT2399, an inexpensive delay chip that’s been used in countless DIY projects. The chip has a reasonably clean sound for short delays, but its tones degrade dramatically at longer settings. The Thsee Anomaly has a high maximum delay time (1.5 seconds), so there are plenty of opportunities for delay degradation. In addition to smeary, lo-res tones, long delays introduce scritchy-scratchy digital noise that Stacks FX coyly refers to as “space dust.”
The delay controls are relatively straightforward: delay time, feedback, and mix, plus a low-pass tone control to darken the wet signal (and de-emphasize that space dust). A dedicated jack lets you control delay times via expression pedal (not included). Another cool feature is “swell,” a secondary feedback control with its own knob and momentary footswitch. When you press, the wet signal leaps to a high regeneration setting. (How high depends on the swell knob setting.) It’s perfect for summoning vicious noise squalls that evaporate as soon as you lift your foot.
Delay is only one half of the Thsee Anomaly’s evil recipe. There’s also an ambitious optical modulation section. In addition to the expected rate and depth controls, there’s an 8-position waveform selector offering everything from smooth sine waves to chaotic sample-and-hold sequences. A tap-tempo switch sets the LFO speed. However, it does not control the delay time. For that, you must connect a controller pedal or manipulate the delay time knob.
The modulation section also includes a multiplier control, which can interpret quarter-note foot taps as anything from half-notes to 16th notes. That’s handy, because at ultra-fast speeds (faster than your foot can tap) the LFO enters the audio spectrum, generating some ring-mod effects—notably a ferocious sub-octave.
On most delay pedals, adding an LFO unlocks phaser/flanger/vibrato sounds. That’s true here, but to a greater extreme. The Thsee Anomaly’s wide LFO rate range and multiple waveforms conjure endless mutant modulation sounds, especially when combined with the weird things that happen to the wet signal at long delay settings.
The Thsee Anomaly is beautifully made. The components reside on two hand-populated circuit boards. All jacks and pots are enclosure-mounted. Four internal trim pots fine tune the pedal’s response. The soldering and wire routing are stellar. All 10 knobs are metal—a classy touch. The pedal runs on any conventional 9V power supply (not included). There is no battery option.
If you’re still reading, perhaps you’re the sort of tone pervert who can make good use of these lowest-of-fi sounds. Interpret my tones rating accordingly. If you dig such stuff, the pedal rates four or higher. If you only want conventionally clean echoes, knock off two or three points. The pedal can sound warmly musical at modest settings and weirdly musical at extreme ones. The $399 price is lofty. But that buys you a handbuilt, large-format, U.S.-made pedal full of unique sounds that must have required substantial R&D. You don’t have to be a freakazoid to like the Thsee Anomaly, but it helps.
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This full-amp-stack-in-a-box pedal brings a new flavor to the Guitar Legend Tone Series of pedals, Missing Link Audio’s flagship product line.
Adding to the company’s line of premium-quality effects pedals, Missing Link Audio has unleashed the new AC/Overdrive pedal. This full-amp-stack-in-a-box pedal – the only Angus & Malcom all-in-one stompbox on the market – brings a new flavor to the Guitar Legend Tone Series of pedals, Missing Link Audio’s flagship product line.
The AC/OD layout has three knobs to control Volume, Gain and Tone. That user-friendly format is perfect for quickly getting your ideal tone, and it also offers a ton of versatility. MLA’s new AC/OD absolutely nails the Angus tone from the days of “High Voltage” to "Back in Black”. You can also easily dial inMalcom with the turn of a knob. The pedal covers a broad range of sonic terrain, from boost to hot overdrive to complete tube-like saturation. The pedal is designed to leave on all the time and is very touch responsive. You can get everything from fat rhythm tones to a perfect lead tone just by using your guitar’s volume knob and your right-hand attack.
- Three knobs to control Volume, Gain and Tone
- Die-cast aluminum cases for gig-worthy durability
- Limited lifetime warranty
- True bypass on/off switch
- 9-volt DC input
- Made in the USA
MLA Pedals AC/OD - Music & Demo by A. Barrero
Sporting custom artwork etched onto the covers, the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One Humcutters are designed to offer a fat midrange and a smooth top end.
Billy Corgan was looking for something for heavier Smashing Pumpkins songs, so Joe Naylor designed the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One pickup. Sporting custom artwork etched onto the covers, the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One Humcutters have a fat midrange and a smooth top end. This pickup combines the drive and sustain of a humbucker with the percussive attack and string clarity of a P90. Get beefy P90 tone plus amp-pummeling output with the Railhammer Billy Corgan Z-One.
Patented Railhammer Pickups take passive guitar pickups to a new level with rails under the wound strings lead to tighter lows, and poles under the plain strings offer fatter heights. With increased clarity, the passive pickup’s tone is never sterile.
Railhammer Billy Corgan Signature Z-One Pickup Demo
For more information, please visit railhammer.com.
Designed for utmost comfort and performance, the Vertigo Ultra Bass is Mono’s answer to those who seek the ultimate gigging experience.
Complete with a range of game-changing design features, such as the patent-pending attachable FREERIDE Wheel System, premium water-resistant and reflective materials, shockproof shell structure and improved ergonomic features, the Vertigo Ultra Bass takes gear protection to the next level.
The Vertigo Ultra Bass features:
- Patent-pending FREERIDE Wheel System that allows for wheels to be attached on the case in no time, giving you the option to travel with it seamlessly
- Upgraded materials, including a water-resistant 1680D Ballistic Nylon outer shell, plush inner lining and new reflective trim for maximum backstage and night visibility
- Enhanced protection with a shockproof shell structure and heavy-duty water-resistant YKK zippers for protection from the elements
- Improved ergonomics and functionality including added back support and load-lifting detachable shoulder straps with side release buckles
- Flexible storage options with added space for touring essentials