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I´m searching a nice Reverb pedal mostly for Rockabilly and Surf. I know its hard to find a nice sounding pedal with this Surf Drip. A Fender Reverb Tank would be much better, but I can´t (and I don´t want to) afford it at the moment!
I used google and found some Pedals with nice sound samples.
Boss FRV-1 – My favourite of these, love the sound samples!
Danelectro Spring King – I love the idea of this kick Pad but I read it sounds very “small”
Malekko Spring Chicken
Z.Cat Spring Reverb
Maybe you have one (or more) of this pedals and tell me something about it?!
I want a Reverb sounding like this Dick Dale, Ventures, Surfaries stuff
Danelectro makes something called the SPRING KING. It's a real spring reverb that has a built it touch of slap back. You can roll off the spring and just get a bit of slap back. So that might cover you. I have a reel echo pedal too since I like to control the slapback sometimes, but the spring king is still my fave pedal. If I could afford a fender reverb unit, I'd use that, but for now the Spring is KING.
I use a Holy Grail Nano. It's cheap, does Spring, Hall and Flerb (flanged reverb)
To my ear it sounds pretty close to the drippy Fender reverb.
Here's a vid of my band doing a surf tune we wrote called El Sol Guerrero (The Sun Warrior) Drums drown out the guitar at times, but you can hear the reverb well for much of the video.
I'm an easy going guy, but I've always got to have my way - Eddie Cochran
I've tried some of the pedals on your list - also looking for a rockabilly/surf do it all pedal.
Chicklet - didn't care for it. I was OK for light amounts mind you, but it thinned out the over all sound compared to the reverb on my amp (which was a peavey classic 50). -Thats not an amp known for it's reverb, but it was still a hell of a lot fuller and richer sounding than the thin sound of the chicklet. Also, the chicklet made a terrible rattle can percussive noise when turned up to moderate amounts. At heavey amounts it was unbearable. Not the slight subtle echoey sound of a real 2 spring pan mind you, but really percussive and loud. Clickity Clack. It won't do surf at all.
-Spring Chicken - much better than the chicklet. It uses the same chip (belton brick) as many other boutique pedals. I found the Mr. Springgy to be VERY similar but slightly smoother and richer. BTW, this pedal will let you dial in large amounts of very usable reverb for surf, but it won't have the drip character per say.
-Mr. springgy. New, it's expensive, but it can be had for $125 used. This was easliy my favorite fake reverb. Smoother than the chicken. Cranked it sounded really good and let me get away with surf stuff (as long as you're not in a real surf band. It didn't drip, but it did sound usuable. At medium or light settings, you get the most beautiful Chris Isaak reverb going. Very lush. Warm enough to sound full, bright enough to sound slightly metallic like spring reverb. It also goosed the presence of my circuit ever so slightly - in a good way. I loved this pedal for what it was.
Boss FRV-1 - I didn't like this pedal at all. But believe it or not, it was by and large the very best at the surf thing. It actually starts to drip and sound like a tube reverb, at least, it's the closest. The thing is, I found it a real one trick pony. It couldn't compete with the Springgy for anything near full/pretty reverb. It could only dish out a trashy, tinny, very thin and trebly but drippy reverb. Even on light settings, it was just to harsh sounding. It's usuable, but it has a VERY narrow range in the settings where it actually sounds good. Over all, I decided to keep the Springgy and settle for no drip, rather than fake drip in an otherwise trashy sounding pedal.I sold it to a buddy that just loves it. But he loves the trashy lo-fi quality. There's a youtube video out there that compares it to a real tank. You can see what I mean. the pedal sounds OK in the video, then they play the real tank and you can hear just how much cleaner, thicker and beautiful the real tank is. To me this pedal is as if you're looking for a new girlfriend that is blond with a nice french accent. Its as if you found a girl who is indeed very blond and very french.....accept she's ugly. I had to pick whether I keep the girl with the features I was looking for, or do I let go of what I originally wanted in order to get an actual pretty girl - which is really more important to me. Of course, other people LOVE this pedal, which just means its also like girls. Everyone's taste is different.
Hardwire reverb - I only played with the Spring setting, which I found WAY too bright. I was OK with the tone knob rolled all the way down. The reverb sound in this pedal was pretty darn close to the SS reverb in a Hot Rod Deluxe. Very close. No drip though. And in the end, it seemed to drop some mid frequencies from the dry signal. There was a presence and mojo missing from the sound while using this pedal. Not for me.
Holy Grail - I had this one for a while before going on the hunt. It definately added some upper mid sizzle that I liked to the signal. -Some presence that was gone when I wasn't using the pedal. You may or may not like that. If I remember correctly, the reverb was usable - a little bright and metallic but in a good way. But I couldn't stand the blend knob, which turns down your dry signal as you turn up the reverb. So if you usually play a low - moderate reverb amount, but every know and then want to kick in some serious wetness, you have a problem because your guitar sounds quieter as you turn it up. Shame on you Electro Harmonix for designing the majority of your pedals this way. Boo.
So I used the Mr. Springgy for a long while and was VERY happy with it until I got a Fender Deluxe reverb Reissue. -Still not anywhere near the drippy sound of the stand alone fender tube unit, but still, the DRRI has copious amounts of beautiful real tube reverb that KILLS any pedal. But if I need another digital pedal, I wouldn't hesitate to track down another Mr. Springgy or perhaps try out a Hermida Reverb, which I've heard so much about (uses the same chip).
Those strymon boxes sound great (both the reverb and the delay), but damn, they's expensive and you never see them used. Hell, you could get the reissued fender tank used for close to that price. -But then again, you'd have to lug that bastard around which I do NOT want to do.
My advice, buy several from a place like Proguitarshop.com who has a 45 day return policy, or buy used. Try them out against each other and return (or sell) the ones that don't cut the mustard. Test their bypass signal (if they're not true bypass) and test them ON, but with the reverb turned down to hear what exactly the pedal's circuit is doing to the dry sound. Then test their ability to do pretty moderate stuff and heavy surfy stuff. In the end, you'll have the one that works for you and you won't have lost any money in the journey.
"I disagree with Brian Blaut" - Jeff O
What all goes into making a tank-based reverb unit?
Very basically, you're making a small tube amp that sends to and returns from a reverb spring tank. Not hard at all really.
I love surf music from the early '60s and have never been able to find a pedal that could duplicate a Fender Reverb unit from that time period. Sooo, I made one.
Bought the transformers, choke and tank off of ebay and the tubes from Parts Express. Most of the caps, resistors, jacks, etc., I had laying around and I used an old chassis from a switching power supply. The schematics and layout diagrams are everywhere on the internet. Ended up costing less than $200.
For me, the hardest part was the cabinet. I suck at wood! But, I figured the uglier the better.
My daughter's boyfriend, a young metal guitar player, laughed at it, saying it was the biggest pedal he'd ever seen.
That was until he played through it.
G5120, G3161, G5248T
Gibson SG Standard
nothin at all replaces a real tube spring tank, thats why I had to have that
built into my amps.. but not everything calls for surf. I love plate reverbs, halls,etc.. ambient reverb is much more useful than the sprang of a surf'verb unless youre actually in a surf band or want to be that irritating guitarist that uses a wah or chorus pedal on every song.