Using Pedals with Synths Part Two

Using Pedals with Synths Part 2- Creative Connections

Welcome to the second video blog that delves into using pedals with synths. In this previous video, we took a synth with multiple outputs and routed them to different selections of pedals.

In this example, I'm using the Arturia Minibrute analog synth, which has a single output. This synth has an amazing vibe and can easily integrate into anyone's synth rig. It even has an audio input essentially making it an FX processor for vocals or guitar.

The easy solution here would be to route the single output to a chain of pedals and call it a day. But never being one to subscribe to the idea of the "easy solution", I decided to be a little more creative to really show how a couple of additional connections can create a much different texture and soundscape.

For this demo, I used the following pedals.

  • Ortega Octopus
  • Hotone Xtomp
  • Palmer Pocket Amp mkII
  • Morley Volume Wah
  • Walrus Audio Luminary
  • ENGL DM-60 Delay
  • Rock Stock Skyline Reverb

The primary output of the Minibrute has been routed to the Hotone Xtomp, which has a stereo output. With over 300 different modules to choose from, I settled on the Phase 90 emulation, which is a simple and smooth phaser effect.

From there I used the left output of the Xtomp and routed it to the Walrus Audio Luminary, a powerful four octave generator pedal, then to the ENGL DM-60 delay, and finally to the Rock Stock Skyline. When you watch the video, that’s the first combination of pedals that I used for this demo.

The right output of the Xtomp has been routed to the Palmer Pocket Amp mkII, and finally to a Morley Volume Wah. This signal path was designed to be a washy distortion that can be introduced slowly with the volume pedal and then topped off with some wah for an extra surprise to the soundscape.

Keep in mind that the secret sauce to making this ensemble sound good is starting with a solid sound from the synth. In the case of the Minibrute, I programmed a pretty straightforward analog monophonic patch with a fast attack little to no sustain to give it a percussive feeling. I then used the built in arpeggiator and set it to Hold in order to free up my hands to activate and tweak my pedals. 

Trust me, it sounds a lot more complicated than it actually is, so watch the video and you’ll see and hear what amazing sounds you can achieve with your synths and pedals by using some creative connections.


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