|LievenDV sings and plays guitar in the Belgian band Point Fifty. He is a reverb nut and enjoys discovering innovating technology.|
As a rhythm guitarists, I'm always very interested in thickening my sound with some texture and yet I've never been a big fan of chorus and flanger, probably because it reminded me too much of the excessive use of the eighties and nineties. I tried adding lower and higher octaves or some harmonies in any possible conceivable combination but I always felt like a hair metal lead player when I turned them on.
I was wondering if this pedal would be for me then...
The Digitech Luxe is a straightforward detune pedal. Its detune function is similar to that of the Whammy. It comes in a very basic layout and frankly, that's all you need for this.
You'll find two controls, "Level" and "Detune".
Level is the amount of the detuned signal in the blend with the dry signal. 12 o' clock gives you 50/50, just as you would expect.
The Detune can go from 50 cents below to above the original pitch. The design and build quality of Digitech products is great these days. Haters gonna hate when they read this but quality digital effects like this are no cheapo, retarded little brother to "original", analog effects. I even believe Digitech is one of the handful of brands that, through their own learnings over the years, helped to affirm the street cred of digital on the pedalboard.
This pedal doubles up your instrument, any instrument actually. I can see guitars but also keyboards or even saxophones using this pedal. For electric rhythm playing, I got nice chugging riffs with a slight detune and a fair amount of mix. An interesting way to fatten up single coils, as your sound won't go to "digital" or "new wave" like a chorus.
A detuner like this is an excellent option for the modern player with a nostalgic taste. (I can't believe I wrote that just now). Fans of 70's rock will dig this pedal, as they will quickly be inspired to try some licks from their favorite classics.
Don't think as it of a lead guitar doubler; clean or slightly overdrive guitars will add flavor and originality to what you might think is the most boring strummed progression.
Even though tuning up instead of down isn't the most intuitive thing to do, you should really try it. If you play along a bass player and you have a reverb with shimmer effect, you two can cover quite some "sonic ground" when using this pedal. I might be a fan for tools that have specific soundscaping possibilities but this pedal could easily be switched on on half your band originals because it helped to define your sound.
I -had- to plug in my electro-acoustic guitar as well. I haven't tried it with a 12 string but a bit of detune (up or down and amount to taste of course) gave my guitar a bit more to carry my vocals.
To answer the question I started off with; yes, this pedal is something for me. Usable toneshaping with the ability to be refreshing or downright cliché when you want to, on various instruments in various styles. I think the amount of practical applications drops as you go more into extreme settings but that's the case with most pedals.
I predict this one to be one of the most underrated pedals of this time. Don't be fooled by the "mere" two controls. Much is up to your own creative applications and other pedals like overdrive, distortions and especially time based effects like reverb and delays with their shimmers, wobbles and tape age functionalities.
Great for: players bored with chorus and flanger but in search of texture and "fattening"
not your thing when: you are actually looking for that typical chorus or flanger. It might osund similar at first but that's not the point of this pedal.
- More info: DigiTech Luxe - Polyphonic Detune Pedal