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Bucket brigade analog delays: old school or new, rack or pedal?
Old 10th April 2010
  #1
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asynchro_nous's Avatar
 

Bucket brigade analog delays: old school or new, rack or pedal?

Analog delay gurus:

There seems to be nearly as many kinds of analog delay units (both new and long out of production) as there are analog synths.

Any thoughts on the various flavors available and which are best for studio work?
Old 10th April 2010
  #2
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pinkerton's Avatar
 

i talked to my brother, an electronics engineer, into looking into getting a bucket brigade IC to build a delay unit for me. after a few days of looking he told me they dont really make them anymore. of course, they might and he just doesn't know where to look. so i am very interested if they are making new BB delays.
Old 10th April 2010 | Show parent
  #3
I've been really happy with my Ibanez AD-202 for a good 10+ years. Lots of control and it has roughly 600ms of delay. They can be found relatively cheap too.
Old 10th April 2010 | Show parent
  #4
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mildheadwound's Avatar
I know it's not bucket brigade, or analog even, but i'm pleased as **** with the pigtronix echolution. It's multitap, with loop and reverse functions. Plenty of modulation options, super long delay times, a full analog audio path, except the delay, (~ bork!) but the greatest sound. A regular dronebox. 'Can't argue with the moogerfooger, but it really flavours the output. This thing keeps it clean and pristine. It's doing wonders with my wimpy analog drum machine.
Old 10th April 2010 | Show parent
  #5
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Tomkeen's Avatar
 

I'm using a MXR carbon copy for my Nord Lead 2x. It works great and sounds great. 600ms of delay, pretty much for an analog delay, right?
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #6
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GotGear?'s Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by soundxplorer View Post
I've been really happy with my Ibanez AD-202 for a good 10+ years. Lots of control and it has roughly 600ms of delay. They can be found relatively cheap too.
I bought one of those in '86 or so. I really liked it and wish I hadn't sold it. They're getting harder to find.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #7
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Memory Boy £50 cheap as chips. Nice ad grungy as well.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #8
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Gribs's Avatar
 

There is much discussion at muffwiggler on the Doepfer BBD units e.g. here and here. It is reported that significant clock noise bleeds through at longer delay times and requires filtering.

I have a vintage MXR analog delay pedal and a modern Maxon AD900. I don't use the MXR any more because it has sentimental value (I received it as a gift in high school ~1982 from a manager at the original MXR company in Rochester, NY for spending a couple of days helping his son - a buddy from my high school - to do inventory in their factory). The Maxon has a nice classic sound. If I were to buy another for delay purposes and not Karplus-Strong style synthesis then I would buy a Moog for its patchable modulation capabilities.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Proton View Post
Memory Boy £50 cheap as chips. Nice ad grungy as well.

Agreed, same here. Nice and warm.



.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #10
run, megalodon
Guest
I don't want to high-jack here, but I doubt this warrants a new thread: What are some options for more cleaner sounding analogs? I have a memory boy and I find it a bit to "grungy." I guess what I'm looking for is a happy medium between this and a digital.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by asynchro_nous View Post
Any thoughts on the various flavors available and which are best for studio work?

Aside from that Aphex on top, the whole rack is BBD based.

Dynacord VRS-23
- Vertical Reverberation System (mid two)
This think makes all kinds of forbidden planet echos and delays or simple chorusing effects. But what's best is that it can do Reverbs as well (and in stereo!). Sick machine that goes as cheap as 250. Liked them so much that I had two actually: the old and new revision. The old one is capable of some wild self oscillations. Needed the cash, sold one to Entrainer.

Dynacord TAM-21 - Time Axis Manipulation System (bottom two)
Analog time machine, 3U, full stereo. It will do choruses, stero doubling and one of the best flange machines around. You have to hear it to believe it. Had two, needed cash recently so i sold one to Beermaster for about 400 bucks.


Still a bargain...
Just because this does not have a SCI or Moog sticker on it, for 650$ you can end end up in analog FX heaven. Add a simple passive effects loop and you are done. You should try german ebay.


Retro sound
Sometimes i don't use any input. I just connect them together. One is set to very short, one to long delay, both have LFOs that can be applied to modify the delay time for some sick stuff. I got the whole Forbidden Planet soundtrack in patching similar to the pic above. Luckily BBD chips used in these units seem to last for quite a long. Never had a single problem.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by run, megalodon View Post
I don't want to high-jack here, but I doubt this warrants a new thread: What are some options for more cleaner sounding analogs? I have a memory boy and I find it a bit to "grungy." I guess what I'm looking for is a happy medium between this and a digital.
Malekko made an 'Echo 300/600' in 'Bright' and 'Dark' varieties-- one of the Brights might replace the MB well. I see them pop up on guitar/bass forum classifieds from time to time. If that's not clear enough, you won't likely find it in an analog pedal.. maybe rack but probably digital either way imo would be the happy medium for the desired coloration with clear repeats, longer delays, etc.
Old 11th April 2010
  #13
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Odey's Avatar
 

I own and use a Diamond memory lane 2 and it sounds amazing. In fact its permanently plugged into my prophet 5. Next I will be buying a roland space echo 201 and MF 104. Both of which think will sound really good.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #14
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badmark's Avatar
MXR carbon copy here
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #15
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Rust Creep's Avatar
 

Maxon makes a killer delay pedal.

but...

Don's post has me really interested. The guy knows his stuff and I think this is one of the tips I'm going to write down. I've never even heard of those units or manufacturers.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #16
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Rust Creep's Avatar
 

Don Solaris,

quick question. I own an Eclipse. any overlap with those units or do they have a a very distinct character?
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #17
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doorknocker's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Proton View Post
Memory Boy £50 cheap as chips. Nice ad grungy as well.
I'll second that but be sure to check the DELUXE Memory Boy as well, it has an addiitional Tap Tempo function.

I went through an intense 'Delay Shootout' phase for my guitar pedalboard and one thing that happened is realizing how great the 'Bucket Brigade' Delays are. There are some great new digital pedals out there like the T.Rex Replica and the Empress Superdelay but to me, nothing beats the Bucket Brigade Analog stuff, it's just more musical sounding.

I also rediscovered my Deluxe Memory Man that's been sitting on the shelf and now use it along with the new Deluxe Memory Boy. They sound different, like Proton said the latter is very grungy and dark but in a really musical and useful way. The Memory Man is soemwhat sparklier and brighter (these are relative term fof course, we're talking analog pedals here) sounding but still very organic.

One thing to know is that the tolerances of these IC chips are pretty wide and there are better and worse sounding Memory Men and I guess the same is true for the Memory Boys. To make matters even more complicated, the larger Deluxe Memory Man is now discontinued and I'm sure that the new, smaller version is probably different sounding.

I also bought a Way Huge Aqua Puss MK II recently but sold it again immedeately. A lot of people rave about this pedal and while it certainly is good sounding I vastly prefer the EH Memory 'Familiy'.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by LinearAggression View Post
quick question. I own an Eclipse. any overlap with those units or do they have a a very distinct character?
The units i listed are analog BBD delays. There is no software in these units, just analog components. And as such, yes they have a very distinct character.

Never had Eclipse...
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #19
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shadowfac's Avatar
 

I have a Yamaha E1010 and although it is very noisy, I like it a lot. It has an LFO to modulate the delay time, which is great for spacey effects, and the feedback goes "above 1", meaning it can really build up and f*ck your speakers if you're not careful.

I've also read good comments about the Behringer VD400 Vintage Delay. Seriously, for only $40 or so. Someone even converted it into a modular panel.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #20
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asynchro_nous's Avatar
 

Lots of great input, thanks.

The Dynacord stuff looks amazing -- I'll keep an eye out for these, but they seem extremely rare (I'm sure people hold on to these if at all possible).

The Ibanez is of course a classic and hard to find as well, especially in good shape...

I'm thinking about getting two of these



for dual mono modulated analog vortex madness. The small footprint is very appealing as well since my studio is getting a bit cramped.

Any feedback (har, har) on the quality of the Malekko delays would be most appreciated.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #21
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doorknocker's Avatar
Disclaimer: I'm in a kind of experimental mode right now and I tried out all kinds of pedals and setups, so I hope that this is not too 'specific':

As I said I've been very fond of the new EH Deluxe Memory Boy pedal and I just discovered soemthing today. The MB has an Effects loop and as I have a spare Z.Vex booster around, I inserted that just for experimentation's sake.

Amazingly it just solved a problem I had: When palying live I sometimes need more delay signal for some Edge-type stuff and by inserting the booster (which only affects the repeats) I can switch between two settings now. I also have an expression pedal hooked up that controls the Feedback amount.

I'm pretty excited about this! Even without programmability (is that a word??) I have now a very flexible delay setup and this things sounds great! Not bad for $150.

Kudos to Electro Harmonix, they really do great work.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #22
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asynchro_nous's Avatar
 

Nice -- a creative solution that will give you a unique sound. Have you tried other pedals / effects in the send circuit? Could get really interesting.

Yeah, the send on the Deluxe Memory Boy is a great feature, one that the Deluxe Memory Man doesn't have, and the tap tempo with fractional settings is appealing, too, if it really works accurately.
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #23
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doorknocker's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by asynchro_nous View Post
Nice -- a creative solution that will give you a unique sound. Have you tried other pedals / effects in the send circuit? Could get really interesting.
Not yet but I sure will try my EH Electric Mistress as well!

Quote:
Originally Posted by asynchro_nous View Post
Yeah, the send on the Deluxe Memory Boy is a great feature, one that the Deluxe Memory Man doesn't have, and the tap tempo with fractional settings is appealing, too, if it really works accurately.
It really does work, I had problems with that on my T.Rex Replica (about twice the price of the MB) and also the Empress Superdelay. The latter just came back from repair. Empress was great and fast with doing that. But I really prefer the sound of the Memory Boy especially regarding the dry sound which stays analog whereas the Empress is 100% digital when the effect is on.

What's great is that I was planning to have a live setup with 3 delays: Slapback, 'general' enhancement and finally soemthing for swells, rhythm tap delays and general mayhem. The amazing thing is that it now seems to be able to do all that with the Deluxe Memory Boy thanks to the experession pedal and the effects loop!
Old 11th April 2010 | Show parent
  #24
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depulse's Avatar
Don't forget everyones favorite German/Chinese manufacturer that has several new products using Bucket Brigade circuits.....


Interesting to see that there seems to be new bucket brigade circuits made and they don't come from a small, expensive company
Old 12th April 2010 | Show parent
  #25
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pulsar modular's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by asynchro_nous View Post
Lots of great input, thanks.

The Dynacord stuff looks amazing -- I'll keep an eye out for these, but they seem extremely rare (I'm sure people hold on to these if at all possible).

The Ibanez is of course a classic and hard to find as well, especially in good shape...

I'm thinking about getting two of these



for dual mono modulated analog vortex madness. The small footprint is very appealing as well since my studio is getting a bit cramped.

Any feedback (har, har) on the quality of the Malekko delays would be most appreciated.
I've had a 616 for a few days. It sounds really good. The modulation is a nice option to have. It's also very quiet. The buffered/true-bypass mode switch gives you a brighter/darker tone but also it's sensitive to what it's connected to - may be more or less darker. Overall a from me.
Old 12th April 2010 | Show parent
  #26
Deleted User
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Quote:
Originally Posted by run, megalodon View Post
I don't want to high-jack here, but I doubt this warrants a new thread: What are some options for more cleaner sounding analogs? I have a memory boy and I find it a bit to "grungy." I guess what I'm looking for is a happy medium between this and a digital.
depends on what you are using it for.. I have a Keeley modded ( VERY IMPORTANT TO DO THIS ) Line 6 Delay modeler.. stereo in and out.. now has LOTS of headroom (thnaks Keeley) .. most of the patches have treble and bass controls on the regen so the repeats can degenerate like analog ..also has modulation so it will 'warble' like tape.....very good sounding with up to 14 seconds of delay..

been at this since Echoplex and Space echo days.. have had many analog and digial echo units ...this is the best most usable, best sounding, most versitile echo unit I have ever had.. ..I can get it to sound like any of the old (pieces of crap) units I have had ..plus nice pristine echo's if you want 'em
Old 12th April 2010 | Show parent
  #27
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ChristianRock's Avatar
Whatever you do, don't get the Korg Toneworks delay pedal - "Dynamic Echo". It's well documented that these all fail - I have one and it's dead also.
Recently I traded my Boss Digital Delay (ok but nothing to write home about) for a Memory Boy - whoa, what an improvement
I wonder if all those 600ms analog delays actually use the same chip and a similar audio path and are just sitting in different boxes with slightly different controls...
Old 12th April 2010 | Show parent
  #28
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LameAim's Avatar
 

Nice to see this thread. I've also been looking into a pedal-based delay, really intrigued by the Red Witch Titan at the moment. Looks like it operates like the Deluxe Memory Boy except it has two additional delays in addition to the first. No tap tempo, though.

Old 12th April 2010 | Show parent
  #29
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steelyfan's Avatar
 

I use these for delays.

DMM (new smaller version) Analog
LIne 6 DL4 (killer)
TOnelab LE (digital = +10)
MPX-1 (nice digital rack mount)
Roland SP-404 (amazing little effects box and sampler)


I would get a less expensive analog, like a MXR Carbon Copy and then a great digital like maybe an Eventide Time factor or an MPX-1 rackmount. You'd pretty much be done with delay........until you heard the modulation on the DMM or the glorious sounds of Diamond's Memory Lane that is.


Moog's MF-104 delay has and an output to run ONLY the modulated delay through, so you can put a fuzz or pitch or verb or another delay on ONLY the echo of the effect....... it's sick.

Watch Proguitarshop's delay pedal videos, they're pretty informative.

steelyfan
Old 13th April 2010 | Show parent
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by pendejo View Post
I've had a 616 for a few days. It sounds really good. The modulation is a nice option to have. It's also very quiet. The buffered/true-bypass mode switch gives you a brighter/darker tone but also it's sensitive to what it's connected to - may be more or less darker. Overall a from me.

i've been looking at 616 for a while now. sounds like a winner. esp the new version on steroids called 919 - with tap tempo, that everyone is eagerly waiting for.


however, ive been reading the guitar fx forums about some QC or even design problems with 616.. some very pissed off customers.. can't recall what the issues were right now.. you could probably google it. but a good number of pedals were returned for an hardware "update" or fix.

i mean, i've never heard of such a thing before - except with software (and jomox products) - what is the world coming to? couldn't they done it right the first time?

can anyone chime in on this subject, are 616 okay to buy now?

and when is 919 coming out ?


i still GAS for their pedals, seems like the perfect combination of features and sound i want, just wanna be sure everything is ironed out now.






back to topic - as far as vintage versus new BBD designs, there is one or two differences. first, most BBD chips made today work on 9V, whilst older ones like the famous MN3002/3005 etc.. worked on 15V. more headroom, less noise etc. there are also differences in their respective maximum frequencies i.e. bandwith. which brings me to the second point,

and this is strictly from my subjective experience: older stuff like vintage DMM from late 70s, Boss DM-300, IBanez 202/230 etc.. are somehow warmer and more organic than the new ones. just bigger sound overall. if you put a Memory Boy next to an old DMM, it is pretty obvious. not that i wouldn't find use for MB character as well. esp tempting in the new deluxe version.


atm i am using a late70s DMM with Reticon chips, i think a first ever version of DMM, a Boss DM-300 (that also has a phenomenal chorus). those are true classics. sonic heaven. I also have a dual BBD Dynacord SRS-56, but its psu is busted - need to fix it. if money were no object i'd snatch an Ibanez 230 or Yamaha E1010 too.



of the new ones, i'd probably go malekko, or DMB. diamond and moog are veeery nice, but i'd rather get another (vintage) monosynth instead.




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