Dub Tech – effects review #1

I accepted the invitation from my buddies to create a cycle about equipment and studio techniques with pleasure. Of course it applies mostly to producing dub and reggae, but nothing prevents me from sharing news and interesting information from beyond the dub scene.

In the beginning a little review of what dubmasters love the most – hardware delays and reverbs. I will share with you information about effects that I know and use, so let’s start. P.S. On the videos as an example I used a drumline programmed in BFD2 (a bit of compression and correction on the kick and hihat). The snare will be pinned on successive effects.


1.Roland Space Echo RE-201 Original Space Echo could be compared to a child. There are nice, bug free copies, but there are also beastly monsters that keep jamming. However, it got much better in Poland lately and we can enjoy great restoration services. One of the examples of this approach is Maciek Polak and his analogia.pl (well deserved advertisement). It’s pretty simple in use and I think everything was written about it already.


2. Roland Space Echo RE-20 (Cosm) RE-201 basically is a king and RE-20 is his far, but very similar grandchild. If anybody is looking for a good RE-201 emulation, he should take a look at this device. It sounds similar, but there is less of the dirty timbre than the original one. The controls and functions are the same, but it sounds slightly different than the reverb itself. An usefull function is a switch on the back panel that lets to send out of the device only the effect, or original signal with the effect.


3.Line 6 Echo Pro Line of green devices by Line 6 already got a cult status among musicians (especially delay DL4 – loved for the sound and hated for the quality of controls). the highest model of the series is elaborated here Echo Pro (it’s so good that I recorded a longer video and, if I wanted to show everything, it would even be enough for over a dozen minutes). Echo Pro is a delay with a lot of modes including LO-RES (with different setups) shown at the beginning, MULTI-TAP (in the end of video), ANALOG DELAY, TAPE DELAY and many, many more. (http://line6.com/legacy/echopro) – I strongly recommend it!!!  

4. TC Electronic Flashback Delay A small, inconspicuous guitar effect (and not only) with great capabilities. TC Electronic is known of their reverbs and delays (TC Reverb 6000 or emulated 2290) and this small “toy” has been produced surprisingly well!! It includes many modes, starting on classic ones like ANA (analog), TAPE, LOFI (something like LO-RES in Line 6) up to 2290 and Tone Print. 2290 is a sound a’la The Edge (as you can see at the end of the video, it works well with snare). Tone Print is a function that enables loading presets prepared by guitarists and “magical” saving sounds set up with Apple devices (iPhone, iPad). It’s interesting that American Pro Guitar Shop in collaboration with TC Electronic produces modified version of that effect (http://proguitarshop.com/tc-electronic-alter-ego-delay.html) and of the reverb effect from this series that sounds amazingly well! (http://proguitarshop.com/tc-electronic-trinity-reverb.html)



5. Electrix MO-fx I’m sorry, but I don’t figure it out… it’s more of a DJ effect. I heard that you can mount it in AKAI samplers (e.x. MPC 2000XL) but I haven’t seen it. Absolute madness, especially in turning modes on and off http://www.electrixpro.com/legacy.php




1. Vermona Retroverb Lancet 

A surprising device made by a company known to some people of its old PA equipment or keyboard instruments (and to some not known at all…). It’s a conjunction of a spring reverberator and oscillator, filter and whatever else it is (details on manufacturer’s page http://www.vermona.com/index.php/en_retrolancet.html). This device is very solid, controls are made of high grade plastic and the potentiometers applied in some of the functions are trustworthy as well (and they don’t generate noise). An interesting function is the “thunder” – physical mechanism hits the spring (to substitute for the traditional kick in the guitar amp). Unfortunately, the reverb on that function isn’t send to the oscillator, so it loses a lot of what is desired in dub.


2. Yamaha Rev-7 A very good reverb! Unfortunately, the device bawls too much in the sample… Anyway, the effect is build very well. It doesn’t in dual mono mode, but it has effect EQ (working pretty nice!), mono/stereo switch, solid case and I/O on XLR sockets. It’s hard in use, but when you figure it out you go on like with that big function buttons.


That’s it! Next time I’ll show you my favourite plugins… there is hidden unexpected evil

Cheers EMZK

Posted by dupmusic