What is the best Leslie pedal out there?

straightblues

Member
Messages
9,457
I have tried several of the cheap versions of a Leslie type pedals (Dano Rocky Road, Arion SCH-Z, analogman Clone Chorus amongst others) and I am ready to buy the best one out there. I am not interested in a vibe pedal or sounds, I want the Leslie sound. (I want a pedal not a speaker cabinet.) Yes I know none of them capture the Leslie sound perfectly.

I play blues and I want it for those B3 sorta sounds and stuff like SRV Cold Shot. I have a budget of $500 if I need it. If I can get one that ramps up and down by touch that would be great. What should I look at?
A couple I have already been researching are the:

Calypso FX's Wirligig
H&K Rotosphere (MKI and MKII)
DLS RotoSIM

If you have any opinions of these, let me know.
 

mprvise

Member
Messages
6,404
I was down to those very three when I did my search. Ended up with the new version Whirligig (with the ramp up/down). Think more Leslie 120 (single lower rotor) and you'll have it. A guy I play with has a real 120, and while that sounds great, in a band context I can get pretty damn close and I'm carrying about 80lbs less than him. Very happy with the Whirligig. YMMV and all that (in fact, get ready for many differing opinions on the subject....).
 

lifeinsong

Member
Messages
1,844
Check out the newest version of Option 5's Destination Rotation, it sounds pretty authentic to me. True Bypass, 2 speeds with Ramp Up/Down...you can fine tune the ramp speeds, and it's the perfect size for a pedalboard. I've been thru a bunch of different Leslie simulators including a Rotosphere, Arion SCH-1, and an Analogman Mini Clone which I still use for my chorus...to me the Destination Rotation gets closest to the real thing.
 

Lamont

Member
Messages
393
The cool thing about the rotosphere is that the tube distortion and the slow and fast speeds are very much like the leslie,,of coarse on guitar , you have to think and vamp like a b-3 player.Roll off the treble and think like Chester Thompson and Jimmy .
 

localmotion411

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
3,391
I did all the research and after many many hours of looking and listening, decided on and ordered the Option 5 Destination Rotation Single (new version of the Destination Rotation). Should be here in a couple of days, so I'll post a report on it as soon as I've put it through its paces. Sound clips on the site sound really good, so I think it'll be a home run if it lives up to the clips in person.

The size is such a bonus, too -- my pedalboard is too big anyway (look at my sig) and a Rotosphere would have been too much. For most of us who aren't stricly blues players, a Leslie sim will probably not be used nearly as much as the other pedals on our boards, so I would hate to have to dedicate the space needed for a Rotosphere -- I think the Destination should be a great pedal. Wish I could get rid of that clunky Whammy as well, but I use it enough to need it.
 

slyzspyz

Member
Messages
738
An alternative if you've already got them, is to use a tremolo after the usual chorus trick. I set my Tremulator at a similar (not exact!) speed to the chorus with the Depth between 9 to 11 o'clock. Not the same I know but more authentic than just chorus if you think about what a Leslie actually does. Requires two stomps of the foot as well, but I use the effects anyway so I save myself some pedalboard space. For live use I like it enough and have had only positive comments. Good luck with your quest
 

Mullet Kingdom

Senior Member
Messages
2,442
The Line 6 "Roto Machine" sounds pretty good and it's relatively cheap too. I don't know whether or not it's "the best", but it's definitely worth investigating.
 

Janglin_Jack

Member
Messages
782
I thought the Line 6 was cool. I think the best pedal might be the Rotosphere, (but I haven't used it first hand). I know that Warren Haynes uses one, and he gets some killer Leslie sounds.

I always wanted to try a Jaques Spin Archer, but I could never find one in stock anywhere.

Jack
 

enharmonic

Old Growth
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,778
It would be a mistake to not consider the Boss Rotary station. It unseated the H&K Rotosphere in my rig. having used real leslies in the studio, it is my .02 that the Boss is as close as you can get without humping a leslie cab everywhere you go.

I think nothing of dropping $400 on a pedal if I have to. The Boss Rotary Station is a rare situation where I don't have to.

Now, the negative...

The overdrive is again, IMO, useless on the Boss pedal. Use it for the leslie features only, and you are going to have a tough sim to beat.
 

iualum

Member
Messages
444
...I went for the RotoSim...tons of tweaks, outside & in...has every Leslie flavor that I need & want...worth a good strong look...
 

eric-d

Member
Messages
3,409
I started with a rotosphere and then went to a ChoralFlange and then went to an AM Mini CHorus and couldn't be happier. The End.
 

Stressfest

Member
Messages
3,705
I'm dig'n the new PCI Arion chorus. Sounds like the SCH-1 with more warmth and better tone sweep plus True Bypass...Frikkn' SWEET :D
 

Zexcoil

Vendor
Messages
5,662
I've been fairly satisified with the Boss RT20, but now I'm gassing for the new Option 5...

The clips sound a little more "organic".
 

gillibi

Supporting Member
Messages
1,219
It would be a mistake to not consider the Boss Rotary station. It unseated the H&K Rotosphere in my rig. having used real leslies in the studio, it is my .02 that the Boss is as close as you can get without humping a leslie cab everywhere you go.

I think nothing of dropping $400 on a pedal if I have to. The Boss Rotary Station is a rare situation where I don't have to.

Now, the negative...

The overdrive is again, IMO, useless on the Boss pedal. Use it for the leslie features only, and you are going to have a tough sim to beat.
I stated previously that I thought the Rotosphere is the best Leslie sim. I also own the Boss RT20. I could never get the Boss to sound good. The noise gate on the effected signal killed it for me. Plus it sounded too harsh on leads and with any overdrive. I only bought the BOSS because I was hating the noise of the H&K-I went back to the H&K and will deal with the hiss. It just sounds SO much better in my opinion.
 

mprvise

Member
Messages
6,404
I stated previously that I thought the Rotosphere is the best Leslie sim. I also own the Boss RT20. I could never get the Boss to sound good. The noise gate on the effected signal killed it for me. Plus it sounded too harsh on leads and with any overdrive. I only bought the BOSS because I was hating the noise of the H&K-I went back to the H&K and will deal with the hiss. It just sounds SO much better in my opinion.
+1 on having the RT20 and not really digging it. I hear too much "digitalness" in it that is not there in others I've tried, like my current favorite the Whirligig. I pull it out of the closet from time to time but will probably never use it on a gig. I purchased it when they first came out, but before I got the Whirligig.
 




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