Is there any delay that really measures up to the old rack stuff?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by pfrischmann, Feb 25, 2015.

  1. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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    Hi guys,
    I started a similar thread on HRI but thought this would be a good conversation to have here as well. TGP has a little different focus.

    I've been using a G system for a while and got it working quite well. One day, out of boredom. I disconnected it and ran an old Roland SDE-2000 I had lying around through the loop of my ecstacy in parallel.

    Well damn,
    It sounds amazing. It just adds so much depth and warmth. I've tried a few other rack mount and pedal delays over the months (Carbon copy, ibanez ad-99, flashback,) and nothing really comes close. I get why these SDE-XXX are so highly regarded.

    Are the older delays just that much (better, organic etc)?
    Is there really any pedal that comes close?
     
  2. olejason

    olejason Supporting Member

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    There are about six billion threads on this subject.

    Short answer: Some people like pedals more, some people will never be happy with anything other than an old rack unit.
     
  3. Belmont

    Belmont Member

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    the Boss DD-2 and early large chip DD-3 have the same chip as the Roland SDE-3000, so yeah they sound amazing.
     
  4. sleewell

    sleewell Member

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    the moogerfooger analog delay has been the best one I have ever played. I love my dispatch master a lot and would also like to get a carbon copy.
     
  5. markjsmith

    markjsmith Member

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    I would rather have a pedal, but I have yet to hear a clean delay as good as I remember my TC 2290 sounding! Maybe looking back with rosy colored glasses though!
     
  6. Bobby Wasabi

    Bobby Wasabi Member

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    Considering the larger footprint of the old rack stuff, I'd say the smaller delay pedals of today can in no way "measure up" to the size of the old rack delays. :rimshot
     
  7. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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    I'm not sure it's that simple or maybe I haven't had to fortune to stumble onto something like this in the 20 something years I've been chasing tone.
    I haven't found any new rack stuff that measures up either. The G major, eventide pedals or Lexicon MPX stuff don't seem as good either. My recollection of the Lexicon PCM stuff is a little foggy.

    This isn't just a simple rack vs pedals think. It's modern racks or pedals VS a 30 year old rack which cost me $50.00 and seems to be besting anything I can put it up against. It's hard to believe we haven't improved on the quality of a digital delay in 30 years. think of how big a cell phone was in 1985.

    I think Providence makes something that might compete or possibly the hardwire stuff.
     
  8. kiki_90291

    kiki_90291 Member

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    There's no way to tell without doing a side by side comparison.

    The underlying technology that these algorithms run on is radically different than it was 20-30 years ago - the processors in the current pedals are smaller, use less power and probably have at least an order of magnitude more processing capability than anything that was available at the peak of the rack age.

    So what we have now is significantly more capable, but some of the charm of these older units may be unintended artifacts of the engineers' compromises in dealing with the limitations of that same technology (for example, look here for how the SDE-3000/DD-2 chip works: http://stinkfoot.se/archives/516 - that analog feedback loop has a lot to do with how that chip sounds and was probably driven by the architecture of the chip).
     
  9. Steve73

    Steve73 Member

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    I've owned a 2290 and a big chip DD3 at the same time ( still own the DD3), and the DD3 really does capture the 'warm digital' thing that the big racks do.
     
  10. pfrischmann

    pfrischmann Member

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    I would rather have a pedal too. I'm just astonished at how much depth this SDE adds. Set it to 320ms with a little modulation and forget it..

    It has THAT sound. It kinda reminds me of my old ep-3. There when you want it to be but doesn't get in the way and adds a fair amount of character to your tone.
     
  11. LouRossi

    LouRossi Member

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    I'd like to pick up another boss dsd-2 again and compare it to my current delay pedals... as far as racks go, guys like the edge, van halen, gilmour etc have been using the same rack ddl's for 30+ yrs! which is a statement about how those sound...
     
  12. chrisjnyc

    chrisjnyc Member

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    Yea, there are a ton of pedal delays with depth and warmth... Sounds like you should check out the SDD-3000, Timeline, Super delay, etc
     
  13. C-4

    C-4 Member

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    If the 30 year rack delay sounds as you want it too, then maybe, your search for a delay unit is over.
    Still, the advice given here is worth pursuing just in case you find a small footprint pedal that makes you just as happy.
     
  14. Blix

    Blix Supporting Member

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    Very few delay pedals have true line level headroom, the only one I can think of is the SDD-3000 pedal that has +22 dBu max, the Eventides and Strymons stops at around +8 IIRC.
    I like using pedals but the lack of headroom can be an issue sometimes.

    Also, compared to good dedicated rack delay, pedals are quite "dumbed down" when it comes to depth of parameters. Which of course isn't necessarily a bad thing, but some of us miss it.

    Take a look at a Symmetric 606 diagram , a 90's delay which is killer:
    [​IMG]
    For those that doesn't hang on HRI the Symetrix is quite unknown, but it's a gem, with a terrible UI. :)


    Also, something like a Lexicon PCM 81 can do loads of thing no pedals are even close to, so there's plenty room for new and exiting pedals in the future!


    And yeah I totally agree on the warm digital nature of those old ones, some special sauce going on there.:)
     

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