Looking for a 3+ parallel blender with specific requirements

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by SirTarquin, Jun 18, 2020.

  1. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    I'm currently using a Saturnworks 4 Loop Parallel Blender, but I have noticed there are significant volume changes depending on how many loops I have selected. I.E. if I have all knobs set at noon, only having one loop selected will drop the volume to 1/4 of its original signal, but will be at unity volume if I have all four selected. If I have them all dialed to max, then each individually isolated loop will be at unity, but if I turn any of the others on it will increase by x2/3/4 depending on how many I have selected. What I am wanting is something that gives me unity volume when only one loop is selected and then can stay at unity volume when two or three loops are also selected without having to constantly adjust knobs each time I turn a loop on or off. Does anyone know if such a thing exists?

    I am only using three of the loops for effects and one for the dry signal, so I don't need something with more than three if it has a dry blend included. The only blender pedals I am aware of that have more than two loops other than Saturnworks are from EHX and Wounded Paw and I am not certain if either will do what I am looking for.
     
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  2. 5150

    5150 Member

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    MusicomLab Parallelizer!
     
  3. jaymeister

    jaymeister Member

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    I am interested in this thread, as I’m also exploring parallel effects.

    Is the Saturnworks a passive or active unit? What about phase feature?

    I’m looking at the EHX Tri and maybe the Switchblade Pro
     
  4. lefort_1

    lefort_1 Nuzzled Firmly Betwixt Gold Supporting Member

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    I've had good luck with the EHX Tri-Parallel

    The volume anomolies are common with passive mixers.
     
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  5. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    Interesting. I wonder if there was a way to differentiate what available was active and passive. I wonder is there is even an active parallel mixer pedal out there at all. I’d image the EHX Tri, Wounded Paw, and VFE Klein Bottle are all passive.
     
  6. jaymeister

    jaymeister Member

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    I think those ones are active. I was looking at the Saturnworks, and they have a range of options including both passive and active.
     
  7. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    This one has potential! It might be a bit more than what I need with all the stereo inputs though, but the midi input is a nice touch. I wish there was a way to confirm it does what I’m looking for before committing to buying it. Can anyone who has one confirm it addresses the unity volume issue I described?
     
  8. lefort_1

    lefort_1 Nuzzled Firmly Betwixt Gold Supporting Member

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    Both the Klein Bottle and the Tri-Parallel are Active.
    Wounded Paw's Blender LOOKS like it should be an active unit as well.
    All three of the units above have the capability of parallel mixing... says so on each of their websites (or on the pedal itself).

    As soon as you see a power-in connector, it could be an Active unit.
    A gut shot of the pedal will give an absolute answer.... one more reason to post 'gut shots, of every pedal in the universe.
     
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  9. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    Nice. Makes me feel like I should give at least one of them a try.
     
  10. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    I'd love someone to explain to me why an active mixer DOESN'T have the problem of getting louder when you mix several sources together? Anyway, the Klein Bottle is active for sure, and is very much like a studio mixer with effects sends on each channel and volumes, so that you can ALSO send some signal from one channel to another to create complex feedback loops. But no, no louder when you combine 2-3 effects.
     
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  11. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    So I contacted Saturnworks again to see if maybe instead of rearranging my board for a different pedal I could get them to make the same pedal over again with an active mixer, and I got a reply back stating all of their parallel blenders are already using active mixers. Yet there are still the volume anomalies. So, wanting to confirm some things, while there's nothing I can do for some of the other mixer blender pedals, I CAN at least provide a "gut shot" for the Saturnworks 4 Loop Blender pedal. I know nothing about what the insides of a pedal mean. Could someone more skilled than I confirm whether this is an active or passive mixer?

    [​IMG]
     
  12. wrathfuldeity

    wrathfuldeity Member

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    Ime, the Klein Bottle will do what you want, its active and will only be relinquished in my will. The KB will also do much more than what you are wanting. I don't ever recall seeing a used one for sale. Good luck finding one.

    edit, its unfortunate that there are not any yt demos feature the more pedestrian use of the parallel mixing without the feedback. However with a smidge of using the feedback features, there are jaw dropping tones, e.g., a few weeks ago stumbled across a Kimock slide like "Stella Blue" thing with a strat clone and oddball se6l6 princeton.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2020
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  13. RockDebris

    RockDebris Member

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    WoundedPaw is active. I use it (v3), it's a great unit. I think the v4 would fit your requirements. No issues with audio at all and adds a really usable EQ to the dry signal.
     
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  14. RockDebris

    RockDebris Member

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    It's because the intention is normally to run all the effects in Kill Dry mode. You are right though, if the OP is running 4 effects and some are passing the dry signal through along with them, that'll definitely change the volume output (either by summing with the signal getting louder, or worse, with phase problems and the signal seeming to get quieter do to frequency cancellation).

    OP, what effects are you running?
     
  15. FplusPlayer

    FplusPlayer Member

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    I have the EH Tri and it should solve your issue.

    It seems to do a good job adjusting to a unity volume. The volume level doesn’t change as you dial in the dry tone. The Tri also allows you to adjust the send / return signals for each loop, so you can balance the volume levels if any of them are off. I’ve also randomly found good tones by flipping the phase on one/some of the parallel loops.

    The tri is the only one I have tried, so I can’t give you a comparison unfortunately.
     
  16. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    Black Russian Big Muff, Human Gear Animato, and Panda Audio Future Impact (yes, I'll go ahead and call myself a Muse fanboy before someone else does). 4th is for dry tone. It doesn't matter what pedals are in there though. Even if all pedals are bypassed and just dry signal is coming through, if all knobs are set to noon - 1 loop on goes to 25% volume, 2 loops on go to 50%, 3 loops on brings it to 75%, 4 loops on is unity. Same for if the pedals are on (this is specifically for the Saturnworks blender, I haven't used any of the others yet). What I am looking for is 1 loop on goes to unity volume, 2 loops on goes to unity volume, 3 loops on goes to unity, all without having to fiddle with knobs every time I turn a loop on or off. I want all of those pedals blended together, but I am not always going to want all three on simultaneously every single time. Sometimes I just want one or two on. Dry blend will probably be on the whole time though. I'm a bass player and those dirt pedals really erase the bottom end without blending in some dry signal.
     
  17. lefort_1

    lefort_1 Nuzzled Firmly Betwixt Gold Supporting Member

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    Well, on the small PCBs I see caps and resistors, and hidden in there I do see 2 8-pin ICs, those cannot see their ID-numbers. So it COULD be an active summing device.
    I've dealt with the folks at Saturnworks a couple times, and always found them to be very up-front and honest.
     
  18. SirTarquin

    SirTarquin Member

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    Haha, this is the reason I will probably NOT be getting one. It was already the most expensive choice to begin with, is no longer being made, and everyone who has one refuses to give one up. The cost has now become way too disproportionate when the EHX Tri does, not all, but most of the same features, is readily available, and is about a 1/3 of the original cost. I even think it's a little smaller. If the KB was still readily available then there might be an argument between the two. But now there's really only one option since the KB is pretty much going to be completely unavailable for the foreseeable future.
     
  19. RockDebris

    RockDebris Member

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    Yeah, I'm scratching my head. I don't know of an active parallel looper that would cut the volume of the dry signal, unless there was a phase issue perhaps or an error in the design. A parallel blender is just another name for mixer aux channels, and that's not what aux channels do. The dry signal should always come through at the same volume regardless of which parallel loops are activated and what they do. With these effects in a parallel setup, and without having Kill Dry features, I think you'd have the opposite problem: each loop engaged combined with the dry would make things louder.

    Try another parallel blender. If that doesn't fix (or change) the issue, then there is still something yet to be discovered about how you are going about this, but right now I think it's the blender that's the issue. My second guess would be a phase issue, in which case a parallel blender with a phase switch on each channel can help address that. I saw that Saturn has a 4 parallel looper with phase switches as an option too. That's not the one you already have is it?
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2020
  20. wrathfuldeity

    wrathfuldeity Member

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    You might be able to get a kit and have someone build it. Iirc its MadBeanPedals.com
    Caught mine discounted, but would gladly pay full price...which is a bargain and worth every penny. The utility of the pedal is outstanding...but its the studio tonal quality that is priceless. If someone offered me $2-3k, I'd flatly turn them down.

    Btw some vid of the guts
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2020
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