EHX MEL9 - Mellotron pedal

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felixer
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Post by felixer » Tue Mar 15, 2016 9:09 pm

oh boy. i think i just wet my pants. this is wonderful. already own the superego (stupid name but lovely sounds) and this is even better for old farts like me :hihi: they are going to sell truckloads of this one ...
so if it's not some ex- eventide, who did the coding? is David Cockerell still involved with EHX?
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Post by smetak » Tue Mar 15, 2016 9:22 pm

GovernorSilver wrote: - Bill demos stuff better than most other guitarists (chops and music selection alike)
Ah, you can say that again!

His intro for the Octavix fuzz is absolutely stunning!



Spent a good deal of time on the piece until I was able to (sort of....) nail it - brilliant!

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Blue Meanie
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Post by Blue Meanie » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:48 am

Yeah Superego isn't the best name. A better name would have been Deep Freeze or something along those lines. It's basically a deluxe freeze pedal.

Yes, the ex-EMS engineer strikes again.

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Post by emdot_ambient » Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:09 am

Great sounding and inspiring pedal!

Even though it can be used w/synths, it makes me wish I played guitar because the best sound in that demo was when both dry and wet were played together (the sax portion of the video). That kind of complex texture is very appealing, I'm sure you could base an entire band's sound around that.

All these cool pedals. I really wish there was a youtube channel that did nothing but demo pedals being used on synths.

JohnLRice

Post by JohnLRice » Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:37 am

emdot_ambient wrote:All these cool pedals. I really wish there was a youtube channel that did nothing but demo pedals being used on synths.
FWIW there is a Facebook group called "Guitar pedals on Synths and Drummachines" https://www.facebook.com/groups/423621474388277/

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smetak
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Post by smetak » Wed Mar 16, 2016 12:21 pm

Blue Meanie wrote:Yeah Superego isn't the best name. A better name would have been Deep Freeze or something along those lines. It's basically a deluxe freeze pedal.

Yes, the ex-EMS engineer strikes again.
Love the thing! I use it with an Afterneath in the loop and a Geiger Counter right after it - the sound is HUGE! Kevin Shields in a box!

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GovernorSilver
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Post by GovernorSilver » Wed Mar 16, 2016 1:24 pm

smetak wrote:
GovernorSilver wrote: - Bill demos stuff better than most other guitarists (chops and music selection alike)
Ah, you can say that again!

His intro for the Octavix fuzz is absolutely stunning!



Spent a good deal of time on the piece until I was able to (sort of....) nail it - brilliant!
On another forum, somebody outed his dark secret: He once recorded on Shrapnel Records, that label infamous for shred-metal guitar instrumentals. He owned up to it, but I was amused that he wouldn't have volunteered that info if nobody brought it up. The damning evidence though has been there for all to see - his Ibanez Vai guitar!

http://www.truthinshredding.com/2010/06 ... -with.html

His work for EHX though is a fantastic example of how to do guitar pedal demos - play music that a wide range of musicians can relate to, not just metalheads and jazz fusion freaks (though I enjoy those musics myself). This is where Roland has struggled in trying to sell guitar synth products - the music that their guys prefer to play is for such a limited audience.

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Post by felixer » Wed Mar 16, 2016 1:30 pm

JohnLRice wrote:Guitar pedals on Synths and Drummachines
the 'freeze deluxe' (aka superego) works great on drums (both live and machine) and any sort of metal percussion! usually i have it on an fx send from the mixer with the 'auto' switch on. the only thing missing is a threshold control. you have to do that by setting the send level carefully ... oh and the 'gliss.' control is labeled and explained totally wrong: nothing to do with portamento type sound. more a sort of crossfade-speed ...

here's a track with metal percussion thru freeze-deluxe. this is what the source looks like ...
Image
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Post by smetak » Wed Mar 16, 2016 4:04 pm

felixer wrote:
JohnLRice wrote:Guitar pedals on Synths and Drummachines
the 'freeze deluxe' (aka superego) works great on drums (both live and machine) and any sort of metal percussion! usually i have it on an fx send from the mixer with the 'auto' switch on. the only thing missing is a threshold control. you have to do that by setting the send level carefully ... oh and the 'gliss.' control is labeled and explained totally wrong: nothing to do with portamento type sound. more a sort of crossfade-speed ...

here's a track with metal percussion thru freeze-deluxe. this is what the source looks like ...
Woe! Great track! Getting myself a mic just to try this out! Must do!!!!

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Post by felixer » Thu Mar 17, 2016 2:19 am

thanks :oops: btw i used a piezo on this one. it's stuck under the board with the exit jack on the back, so you can't see it in this pic. used an art mp: small desktop valve preamp with a pretty hiZ jack input and a built-in limiter. the whole track was done in one take as an impro, so i didn't want any crosstalk from other instruments ... freeze effect was added later during mixing ...
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Post by MindMachine » Fri Mar 18, 2016 10:24 pm

:waah: Im so happy. If this can make my Casio sound tronny at all I will be so :waah: with joy.

Amazing shit these days.
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Post by ersatzplanet » Sat Mar 19, 2016 4:20 pm

sduck wrote:I don't know about that - although they say it's not sampling in the video, the fundamental way the mellotron works is sampling, and the sounds are very close to the mellotron originals. I suspect there's actually some kind of sample triggering going on, but they've put disclaimers in to fend off lawyers - hence no actual mention of the mellotron name.

I think I'm going to have to grab one of these, before said lawyers make them go away.
They are probably telling the truth about no sampling being used. Using samples would be a real pain in the ass. The thing tracks the guitar perfectly, even on bent notes and slides (not to mention polyphonically). If it were using samples, that would be near impossible to pull off. You would have to tune to the samples instead of the pedal deriving it's pitch from what you are actually playing - generating the tones on the fly. Since they have a history of pedals that do similar stuff without samples, I seriously doubt they have them in here.

Also not all the voices sound that good. If they used samples from the original, ALL the sounds would sound as good as the choir, cello and strings. Some of the other sounds are pretty lame in my opinion.

I want to find what this sounds like with a bass myself. The cello and violin sounds would sound great alongside my bass sound. I play a fretless so the lack of samples makes that possible.
-James

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tthogs
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Post by tthogs » Sat Mar 19, 2016 4:29 pm

I dont get it. If it doesnt sample, then htf is it making those sounds? Digital synthesis?

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ersatzplanet
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Post by ersatzplanet » Sat Mar 19, 2016 4:53 pm

tthogs wrote:I dont get it. If it doesnt sample, then htf is it making those sounds? Digital synthesis?
Basically the way moogboy described - resynthisizing the sound in real time. They have analyzed the original samples and have made an algorithm that describes that sound and applies it to the incoming audio. They don't need to detect the frequency exactly and do any sort of pitch to anything conversion, they just add spectral noise and apply a VERY dense mult-filter transform to make the sound. I imagine there is a nice fast DSP in that box that is working really hard.

If it were sample based, the unit would have to detect the separate notes in a chord, from a monophonic pickup, extract the fundamentals, re-pitch six samples to track (and whatever odd off 440 tuning the guitar is in) that were close enough to the played pitch to not sound like chipmunks, and play those samples in real time. And deal with slides and pitch bends. It is hard enough to do that with a hexaphonic pickup.
-James

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GovernorSilver
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Post by GovernorSilver » Sat Mar 19, 2016 9:47 pm

I'm guessing they created "profiles" of the Mellotron sounds in a manner similar to how the Kemper Profiler works. The Kemper lets you record a "profile" of anything you want. Most users did the normal thing and recorded profiles of their favorite vintage amps into the Kemper so they could leave the precious vintage amps at home and just bring the Kemper to the gig.

Bill Ruppert was one of the first Kemper users to create profiles of his favorite Roland VG-99 sounds, including his notoriously good VG-99 synth patches. He might still be the only Kemper user to have done that. Very few guitarists have the kind of imagination that Bill has.

He probably presented the profiling idea to EHX and they probably did that with a Mellotron or whatever.

Here's his Mellotron flute sound on the Kemper:
http://soundcloud.com/bill-ruppert/kemp ... ron-flutes

And his Rhodes sound:
http://soundcloud.com/bill-ruppert/kemper-rhodes-rb

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Post by Crowyote » Sun Mar 20, 2016 5:56 am

Isn't this pedal just another iteration of the HOG2, using various settings and sounds that the HOG2 can generate?

Or are they adding other things to mix too?

I know the B9, C9, and Key9 are just basically HOG2 presets in a box . . .

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Post by Amer1231 » Sun Mar 20, 2016 7:14 am

Crowyote wrote:Isn't this pedal just another iteration of the HOG2, using various settings and sounds that the HOG2 can generate?

Or are they adding other things to mix too?

I know the B9, C9, and Key9 are just basically HOG2 presets in a box . . .
I agree about the B C and key 9s but this one does sound different. The key9 does sound hog(ish) with a little filtering on top and eq but this one does sound different especially in the choir mode.
Still the hog is one of the greatest pedals in their line.
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Post by GovernorSilver » Sun Mar 20, 2016 12:36 pm

Crowyote wrote:Isn't this pedal just another iteration of the HOG2, using various settings and sounds that the HOG2 can generate?

Or are they adding other things to mix too?

I know the B9, C9, and Key9 are just basically HOG2 presets in a box . . .
In one of the Effectology videos, Bill shows how to get the Mellotron flute sound by running a chorus pedal after a POG2 - it'll probably work for any of the OG pedals.

I doubt you can get the choir sound though with your HOG2, no matter what pedals you put before and after it.

I think they all work by realtime analysis of the input pitch, amplitude, and envelope, then apply those parameters to a synthesized tone (oscillator, envelope, etc.). For the choir they probably used a waveguide (or "profile") of a choir.

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Post by felixer » Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:44 pm

ersatzplanet wrote:They don't need to detect the frequency exactly and do any sort of pitch to anything conversion
and this is the real beauty of the system.
ersatzplanet wrote:I imagine there is a nice fast DSP in that box that is working really hard.
yep. the theory behind it was pretty much cracked in the 80/90ies. it took until now to get a small&cheap dsp to actually pull it off in a compact and affordable package.
ersatzplanet wrote: If it were sample based, the unit would have to detect the separate notes in a chord, from a monophonic pickup, extract the fundamentals, re-pitch six samples to track (and whatever odd off 440 tuning the guitar is in) that were close enough to the played pitch to not sound like chipmunks, and play those samples in real time. And deal with slides and pitch bends. It is hard enough to do that with a hexaphonic pickup.
that never really worked. if you play cleanly it does a reasonable job but the playing gets boring. now you can 'hendrix-out' and not worry :tu:

i don't even want to think about the coding/math behind it. those guys must be from another planet :hail:

maybe you could recreate those sounds with a hog. but if you optimize for a known target i'm sure the programmer could (and would) throw in some nice extra's.
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/\/\/\/
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Post by /\/\/\/ » Mon Mar 21, 2016 6:48 pm

Doesn't sound so much like a mellotron to me, more like Casio tones... but pretty cool sounds in general, and a good jumping off point that is already far away from a guitar.

I'd love to hear this combined with some other pedals.

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Post by felixer » Tue Mar 22, 2016 8:19 am

/\/\/\/ wrote:Doesn't sound so much like a mellotron to me, more like Casio tones...
c'mon man, really, get your ears examined. and/or sell me your casio :lol: are we talking about the same thing :despair:
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Post by /\/\/\/ » Tue Mar 22, 2016 8:47 am

Maybe Casio is not the most apt comparison... just sounds a bit cheesy to me. (not saying they haven't done a great job for what it is...) In my opinion, Casios sound badass -- with a little further processing.

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Post by GovernorSilver » Tue Mar 22, 2016 1:12 pm

My digital piano is a Casio Privia. Pretty decent acoustic and electric piano sounds for its price range (about $700 when it was new). The current generation is even better.

I haven't heard a Mellotron choir sound from the current-gen Casios as good as that of the MEL9 pedal though... yet, anyway.

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Post by Cat-A-Tonic » Tue Mar 22, 2016 8:57 pm

I wonder how similar the mellotron flute sound on the C9 is to the one on this Mel9.
The demos sound a little different.

I like that Mel9 has an attack parameter.

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Post by felixer » Wed Mar 23, 2016 7:25 am

GovernorSilver wrote:I haven't heard a Mellotron choir sound from the current-gen Casios as good as that of the MEL9 pedal though... yet, anyway.
well, any decent sampler can play back mellotron samples. plenty of free plugins around. there is no secret. the only choice to make is which tapes you use: old/battered ones with lots of 'vintage aroma' or newer/cleaned-up ones so it sound like new-from-the-factory ...
but then you are bound by playing a keyboard with midi. the mel9 should work with any guitar, electric piano, stringensemble. even with a voice. imagine a single singer being able to produce the choir sounds :hyper:
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