Opinion Sought: How important is stereo output on a Chorus pedal?

mayfly

Senior member
Messages
8,302
Hi Folks,

As some of you know, I design and build a line of effects pedals. What you might not know is that I'm working on a chorus pedal. A foot-switchable dual chorus to be precise. The prototype sounds glorious - it's really awesome. Killer, actually. But - it's got a mono output. Yes, it's a dual-mono chorus.

Many choruses out there are stereo. Now, I could design a chorus with a stereo output, but having two outputs makes things like true bypass difficult. Dare I say impossible in the size of enclosure that I'm using. So my question for the group. Would you rather:

1 - A dual chorus with stereo outputs, but buffered bypass.

- or -

2 - A dual chorus with true bypass, but mono output.

What do you say?

Trevor
 

Spud

Senior member
Messages
1,268
I realize you don't want to hear from me, but mono is better.
 

Rick

Senior member
Messages
4,508
For me stereo chorus is only useful when I play at home. At home stereo reverb and delay is also fun. I love it. Playing out makes no difference. That said your goal is to make a pedal that's not only cool but will sell. So maybe stereo is the way to go. I have buffered pedals and honestly I like them alot ... I'm told they boost the signal down the line so you don't have fall off. It's fun to play something thru two amps and hearing it shift around the room. I guess my vote is for stereo buffered ... You can still play it mono and you get the buffered signal boost. Win win.

I have the tc electronics stereo chorus pedal and I wish it wasn't so subtle. Years ago I played a Roland stereo chorus combo and it was divine
 
Last edited:

TBurst Std

Senior member
Messages
2,661
Trevor, is creating 2 different versions viable?
I say this as well as stereo is cool, at least for the venues I play, 95+% are a mono presentation.

I could see those playing at home desiring stereo, but those who gig wanting dual mono.
 

DuckBaloo

Senior member
Messages
299
The stereo option is a big plus but, like most stereo pedals, one option 99% of players will never use. DPDT relays could offer true bypass with one switch, but that's probably the space issue you are having. When will you add a third chorus and go full '80s?

Personally, I prefer the single stereo chorus, where one amp/cab/speaker gets 100% dry and the other amp/cab/speaker 100% wet — like a Boss CE-1/CE-3, Roland JC-120, or a Fender Princeton Chorus. I think a) it retains more definition and b) it feels more spacial since the effect isn't created until the soundwaves from each speaker meet in the audience. I find stereo dual chorus can get so layered it starts to get muddy.
 

mayfly

Senior member
Messages
8,302
The stereo option is a big plus but, like most stereo pedals, one option 99% of players will never use. DPDT relays could offer true bypass with one switch, but that's probably the space issue you are having. When will you add a third chorus and go full '80s?

Personally, I prefer the single stereo chorus, where one amp/cab/speaker gets 100% dry and the other amp/cab/speaker 100% wet — like a Boss CE-1/CE-3, Roland JC-120, or a Fender Princeton Chorus. I think a) it retains more definition and b) it feels more spacial since the effect isn't created until the soundwaves from each speaker meet in the audience. I find stereo dual chorus can get so layered it starts to get muddy.
Well, that's interesting... and a lot easier to do as well. For the stereo out I had planned to mix two 180 deg out of phase chorus sounds, one right and one left. The one side dry and one side wet thing might be just the ticket here...
 

Jebberz

Senior member
Messages
266
For me, the ability to go the stereo route would be useful only in a recording context, live, I'm 100% mono (I play bass). And since in a recording situation, most of the time we now record dry and aply effects after... I guess mono would be fine.
 

bagman67

Senior member
Messages
8,353
I'm just here to say it's awesome you're continuing to make neat stuff, Trev; and I'm still in line for the reverb pedal when it comes along.
 

Spud

Senior member
Messages
1,268
Will one side be capable of doing the "Blue Hippo" sort of organ/rotory thing? That would be cool.
 

mayfly

Senior member
Messages
8,302
I'm just here to say it's awesome you're continuing to make neat stuff, Trev; and I'm still in line for the reverb pedal when it comes along.
Thanks man. And yes that reverb is in the wings for sure! Several people have been using the prototype and they don't want to give it back!
BTW, the reverb has stereo outs ... but should it also have stereo ins?
 

bagman67

Senior member
Messages
8,353
I dunno, man, I'm a guitar-pedal-amp-speaker guy. If I need stereo swirliness it'll be as Jebberz said above, and I'll apply it to the dry, recorded signal.
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,453
I think modern reverb should have the option of stereo in, as should most time based effects that may be post pre amp (FX loop) pre power amp(s).

For modulation e.g. there may be different use cases, perhaps consider two versions of chorus a smaller mono version and another with stereo I/O

Probably also worth looking at larger and smaller manufacturers to see what they are offering, especially those well established pedals which have become that for a reason.
 

mayfly

Senior member
Messages
8,302
I think modern reverb should have the option of stereo in, as should most time based effects that may be post pre amp (FX loop) pre power amp(s).
Yep, that's the feedback I've been getting from local stores regarding the reverb.
Probably also worth looking at larger and smaller manufacturers to see what they are offering, especially those well established pedals which have become that for a reason.
Yep, already did the survey of the competition so I know what's going on there. In a nutshell it's either stereo out and buffered bypass, or mono out and true bypass. Just wondering what folks here have to say.
 

mayfly

Senior member
Messages
8,302
OK Thank you all for your comments, especially DuckBaloo who legitimized the whole chorus stereo outs as 'wet on one side and dry on the other'. This is going to be my solution. The output is going to be a stereo jack with the existing mono out on the tip, and the wet side on the ring. The unit has a 'mix' control on the existing output allowing you to dial pure dry, pure wet, or anything in between. For stereo use, just dial that to pure dry and you're set!

But what about that full bypass you ask? Well, I figure if the unit is in bypass, there will be no wet sound no matter what (I ground the input of the effect circuity when in bypass). This allows me to just let the 'wet' side go quiet - no need to switch that with anything else. So, the normal effect out is full bypass with a relay, but the wet side is buffered - it's just that there is no wet sound when the unit is bypassed. Done! Fully bypass, and stereo outs! Best of both worlds baby.

Finally, I made sure there was enough resistance on the driver driving the ring as to not overload the op-amp when a mono plug is plugged in (which would ground the wet side output). Should not affect the normal operation of the unit.
 
Top