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Old 4th October 2019
Gear Addict

Originally Posted by vibralux View Post
Am I the only one not feeling this delay? As much as I love Valhalla (I own Vintage Verb and Plate) and as much as I wanted
to like it, it sounds 2D and artificial to me. I much prefer Echoboy. I do love the creative presets which are often really
impressive, but the tape emulation sound silly compared to things like Outer Space by Audio Thing.
I know you went on to buy it, but I agree.

I'm not knocking it as a 'FX' box, it's clearly one of the better delays to use for fun/ease of use and sounds exciting/interesting without sounding harsh or whatever...

...but on many of the modes where it tries to get 'characterful' (i.e analog like) it just comes off as hokey/fake/plastic. Much like I hear with soft-synths vs real analog.

I've got a ton of delays and will use various ones when I need some "FX" for a specific part (inc timeless, replika xt etc) but for my main MIX delay(s) I still find Echoboy just nails it everytime.

I have to say I found the same with Valhalla verbs vs my go-tos (Relab 480, Eventide Ultraverb) the same thing applies to the verbs as to this delay, it's probably imperceptible to most but to me the v-delay/verbs both have this cheap sound that is unconvincing when used overall on a mix (as sends from many sources). As track inserts for effect, fine, like anything is... but I can't rely on them for my mix verb/delay as they do sound pasted on.

The verbs sound grainy and low rent (like cheap guitar boxes from the 80s) vs the LX480/Eventide/Exponential etc, and now, this delay at first appealing to ears in an ear candy way, soon pales next to Echoboy and even Replika XT as it doesn't have the DEPTH or character of echoboy that is just there without sounding forced or stuck on. Echoboy is better with the source and in the mix, Replika isn't quite so good but high quality for colder stuff, but V-delay sounds kinda cheap doing either type. The only high quality stuff I get from it, that compares, is with the more effecty type delays such as timeless (which I don't use that much anyway for that reason).

I can't see me ever using this as a go-to main mix delay as it just sounds TOO digital somehow, too 2-D, and the attempt at making it sound characterful/tapey just sounds like a caricature.

I'll also use the EchoesT7E (audiority) for some special 'goto' delay, and Eventide H3000 factory plug for esoteric stuff, plus their ultradelay... all of those are, imo, in a totally different league to Valhalla delay which is style over substance for me (by style I mean the easy GUI the cool presets the nice 'instant' results that fool the ear).

I also noticed the difference between eventide's black-hole vs Valhalla's Shimmer, again and again the V-stuff has an instant 'easy' appeal but just lets me down in a full mix once I've put it up against the big name stuff.

Clearly Sean can do a great coding job and knows his stuff, but I feel like on the sonics he's only managing to emulate them from a scientific angle then is pasting on 'character' in a much more haphazard way, be it grain/mud in the verbs or hokey noise/modulation in the delays.

I know from my own in-depth testing that I can do the same mix using my usual go-tos mentioned above, then do it again with Valhalla, and the Valhalla mix will sound flatter, less dimensional, less rich (yet sometimes more muddy!), less defined, less punchy, less "analog" and less professional. If you don't compare it like this yourself and just buy/stick to V stuff you'll probably never even realise...

Just my take!