A delay pedal is a delay pedal, it means being late of what you are playing.Yes,really, practically it make copies of what you play and repeat and engage it with the original sound.Delay pedals,most mandatory and precious to juice up your playing, no matter what genre you play , you will end up getting one. So before you proceed to buy one, you have to know which type of delay you want.Despite of it, I will explain Delays on their types and technical functionality on easy words based on the following points to consider:
- Analog Delays
- Digital Delays
- With Tap tempo or without tap tempo switch Delays
Analog delays are old fashioned, they use bucket-brigade device (BBD) chip , which in easy words sends the signal through series of capacitors. Analog delays tend to work very realistic, they sound darker, respond very well to your playing dynamics and has great sonic range. If you strike Harder, the delay feedbacks will repeat stronger , if you pick soft,the delays will act so. True dynamics.I have done 2 videos below to make you understand what the EHX deluxe memory boy with tap tempo sounds like on clean guitar, and distortion,Please do ignore the background noise though.
Chords played with ESP LTD ELITE II HORIZON III FR, with all bypassed and only the delay connected in front of Blackstar HT 50+ 412 Cab.
Same Chords played with Wampler Triple wreck distortion in front of Blackstar HT 50+ 412 Cab.
So as you can see , despite of clean guitar or Distortion, the analog will work fully organic.The small drawback with analog delays are they have less delay time compared to the digital,but hey I do not want anything more than usual!There are lots of analog delays available in Bangladesh right now.
Digital delay pedals use digital signal processing (DSP) , the same tech all modern guitar multi fx use,digital delays has more virtual function and longer delay time capability. Digital delay qualities depend on the makers really, I use a T-Rex reptile II echo simulator, which sounds and works as good as analog. Besides that TC electronic Flashback X4,Line 6 DL4 are quit popular worldwide. Besides that you can store your presets with many digital delays.
3.With Tap tempo or without tap tempo switch Delays
What is delay time?
Delay time is the gap between the feedbacks,which is measured by Second or milliseconds(ms).So if you know about tempo, we measure songs by BPM, which has a direct relationship with delay times.Your delay feedbacks has to match your songs tempo,otherwise end results are your delays are off beats.Now lets get down on how can we set that?
Set delay ms
Every analog or digital delay has a delay/time or a knob which sets the ms-the delay time. Like the MXR CARBON COPY has a range of 20 ms to 600 ms of delay time,if you keep the delay knob to7 O’Clock which is the lowest where the knob will not move any lower is 20 ms. the delay time will keep increasing while you move it clockwise.Now all you have to do is know your song’s tempo and calculate the delay ms and sync.
BPM to MS Equation
The equation is 60,000 / BPM = MS
Why 60,000? There are 60 seconds in a minute, and 1,000 MS in a second. So, 60 * 1,000 = 60,000.
BPM to MS Example
60,000 divided by 120BPM = 500 milliseconds (.5 seconds)
ROCKET SCIENCE? BAD ON MATH ? Leave it and just turn the delay time knob where it matches your song tempo 😉
Delays with Tap Tempo Switch
Use the tap switch and tap tap tap tap with the song you are playing, the MS is set with The BPM-LIVE!
So it is your choice really what you are comfortable with – tap or no tap!
So Figure out your delay sound, your feel and what you need , you might have both analog and digital delays , keep experimenting if you have the chance to keep on running with variations.