|Steven Williams works for Dawsons Music in the UK. Writing about gear is one of his passions.|
The new Vox Lil' Looper is a very cool and compact little effects pedal and one that I've been looking forward to for a long time. It has many of the features that made the Dynamic Looper, which is a very good start. It has the dual-pedal design to record and overdub loops so the vocalist or guitarist can create harmonies with themselves. There are of course many other pedals that have this feature but the Lil' looper has a few tricks up its sleeve which I will talk about in detail. So it seems Vox have improved on an already very impressive effects pedal.
It's easy to be fooled by the Lil' Looper's size but I assure you big things come in small packages. This in itself is an advantage really, when you bare in mind its lighter, easier to transport without sacrificing any quality in turn for space. I do think it is predominantly aimed for playing at home though with the addition of the headphones slot so you can quietly practice, for those late night strokes of genius.
Inside the magicians hat there is a surprising amount of space, the Lil' Looper can record up to 90 seconds of audio through two independent loops and then an unlimited amount of takes can be overdubbed. Then it's down to you and you can create some very far-out and unique sounds as complex as you want them by switching between different patterns. One of my personal criticisms of its older brother the Dynamic Looper was that it didn't have an undo/redo button and to a perfectionist like myself that is imperative! Believe me there is nothing more
annoying than when you're layering a harmony and you screw up and the final one and have to start over again. But luckily VOX have included this feature into the Lil Looper.
But it doesn't stop there… oh no! The Quantize feature automatically synchronises your samples and loops them to the beat and even allows two loops to be paired at the same tempo. Vox have also managed to squeeze 12 effects that simulate acoustic or bass guitars to a higher standard than I was expecting. It does come with the standard effects such as Crunch, Chorus, Distortion etc but it's the manipulation of the vocals where the Lil' Looper excels, watch this video for a cool demonstration:
I'm sorry to end on disappointing note but unfortunately the Lil' Looper doesn't come with an equally small price tag, leaving you with a very touch decision because at that price range there are some very cool effects pedals. That's not to say that the Lil' Looper isn't worth it but personally I'd have a look around and try before you buy.
- More info: Vox Lil' Looper - Looper Multi-Effect Pedal