Electro-Harmonix Flanger Hoax Pedal
- Ethereal flange and phase effects, great for guitar, bass, and keyboards
- Feedback from wet to swept and bypass Direct, blended, and effect outputs Blend control 18DC-500 18v power supply included
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|Item Dimensions||12 x 4.25 x 9 in||8.5 x 3.8 x 4.2 in||8 x 7 x 3.5 in||5 x 3 x 4 in|
Incredible? The most unique modulation pedal ever designed. Performance controls and parameter interaction allow you to create new over-the-top sounds. Ignite frequency collisions that range from beautiful shimmers to war of the worlds assaults - flanging is just one of the many possibilities, limited only by your imagination. The Hoax is the pedal you've dreamed about but never knew existed.
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Cons: Unfortunately, your dues don't end there. Immediately after plugging this effect in and cranking up my amp, the FH starting hissing something fierce. I'm not talking sweep either, I mean a hiss. A loud, constant, obnoxious, un-changing hiss. I actually had to turn it off and put it down a couple hours after getting the pedal because it was giving me a headache listening to the constant hiss. I know EHX's mantra of "pedals are meant to be noisy," or whatever, and I can dig that an off-the-wall phaser will have a little noise, but when the hiss renders the pedal nigh unusable, that's not a mantra as much as a cop-out. I'd be interested to know if that hiss was the result of not wanting to limit the pedal's potential to rock or of just using cheap, crap parts to keep production costs down and profits high.
The documentation/instructions that come with the pedal are woefully insufficient and EHX must assume that you have a degree in electrical engineering, throwing around a lot of technical terms and even some schematics. On the other hand, consider how much time you've actually spent looking at directions of other pedals you've purchased vs. just plugging it in and twisting some knobs around. Most of us hardly look at the instructions, but on a pedal this complex with as many knobs and widgets, a little reference guide would've been appreciated.
Conclusion: The Flanger Hoax is great at what it was designed to do and it's an absolute tragedy that it's nearly prohibitively noisy. If not for the hiss, this little space-case would be a 5-star review. I'm going to keep experimenting with limiting the hiss and I'll try it on some different amps to see if it just doesn't get along with my Vox AC30. If I can't get it squared away, I'll be returning it... but I'll be sad while doing it.
After owning it for over two years, I'm still not exactly sure how to use it. The online sample settings have been helpful in dialing in multiple phasing, tremolo, flanging and weird alien sounds, though. I higly recommend that you research these setting suggestions to help point you in the right direction and hopefully reduce a great deal of frustration over trying to navagate the F.H.'s oddly grouped control layout. The included "manual" from EHX will only add to your frustration, IMO.
While the word "flanger" is in the title, I have yet to dial in a flanging tone I'm happy with. It will do through-zero flanging. Unfortunately, I have about "zero" interest in the TZF tones this box produces; low in level compared to the dry signal, background hiss, and an annoying pitch bend that occurs no matter how you adjust the sweep of the flanging. Some people claim you can nail Electric Mistress tones with this pedal. I've tried a few of the online E.M. sample settings and have not been impressed.
The F.H. does a much better job with phase shifting effects, which makes sense given that the circuit consists of fixed and swept phaser stages. I have been able to get very nice Small Stone, Uni-Vibe, auto wah and tremolo/vibrato effects that aren't too noisy and only a bit lower in level than unity gain. Often, a single flick of a switch or turn of a knob will significantly change a setting's tone and create new and interesting sounds. A little patience will be rewarded when it comes to developing your own unique settings.
Other people will surely disagree with me on this. But, IMHO, the Flanger Hoax is just that-a "hoax"-when it comes to good flanging tones. If you are mainly after that kind of effect, get a dedicated flanger like the MXR four knobber or EHX Electric Mistress. You may like the flanging this unit produces. It just sounds too noisy and anemic to me. If phase shifting and related modulation effects are your cup of tea, however, then this huge, all analog, pedal board UN-friendly, ungodly beast of a pedal should satisify nicely.