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 EHX "9" Pedals 
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Post EHX "9" Pedals
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I just got the Electro-Harmonix SYNTH9 pedal. It's my first EHX pedal. In fact, it's really only my 3rd guitar effects pedal I've ever bought in my life (after a BOSS distortion pedal in the 90s, and recently an X2 Ditto Looper pedal). My effects are all digital now, but as a keyboard player, I've always envied the pedal boards of the guitar player. I really liked this demo at the bottom for the new EHX Synth9, and I really, really like those old analog synth sounds.

In college, I learned Digital Sound Synthesis with a working ARP 2600 in the studio basement of Kansas State University (and we had the BIG one, not one of the portable gigging ARP 2600s, but the one that took up an entire table). Using nothing but patch cords, we learned to connect sound modules to keyboards and LFO oscillators and HFO oscillators, and reverbs, and phase rings and a bunch of stuff and terms that I haven't used or thought much about since the 90s, like ring oscillators and Robert Moog's 4-pole "ladder" VCF.
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I have an 80s Van Halen-ish song I was working on that needed some analog synthing, and I do play keyboards, and I do have several analog synth emulators and also sample banks, but I wanted to play just my Sticks and sound like keyboards. And also track with the Stick output as a regular Stick. And not use MIDI or have another separate hex pickup.

I've only noodled for a couple of hours last night with my NS using just the melody pickups. And it tracks pretty fricking incredibly! No lag whatsoever that I can detect, except for the synth sounds that have a slow attack. And the two dials that control 2 parameters per sound really add to the customization of the sounds.

I've barely scratched the surface of the SYNTH9. Which is merely the latest in a long series of these pedals. A few people on Facebook have asked about how it works compared to the Roland V series, VG99, BOSS GP10, and other hex pickup MIDI trackers.

What's been your experiences with the EHX 9 series (B9, C9, KEY9,)...
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and now the MEL9 and SYNTH9 pedals?

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SYNTH 9 INFO
Sound on Sound article: http://www.soundonsound.com/news/ehx-in ... er-machine
Quote:
Using the same technology that powers the acclaimed B9, C9, Key9, Mel9 pedals from Electro-Harmonix, which make your guitar sound like classic keyboard instruments, comes the Synth9 Synthesizer Machine. This new pedal emulates classic synthesizers and features nine of the most distinctive vintage-synth type sounds. A nine-position rotary switch allows the user to select from the following presets. It shouldn’t be too hard to guess where the inspiration for these lie: ‘OBX’, ‘PROFIT V’, ‘VIBE SYNTH’, ‘MINI MOOD’, ‘EHX MINI’, ‘SOLO SYNTH’, ‘MOOD BASS’, ‘STRING SYNTH’ and ‘POLY VI’.

Like the previous 9-series pedals, the Synth9 works on guitar or bass without modifications, special pickups or MIDI implementation. According to Electro-Harmonix, its usable tracking range extends up to about the 23rd fret on the high-E string of a standard guitar and down to the open A-string on a bass guitar — so there’s more than enough range for the most ear-piercing synth leads and the most trouser-wobbling synth bass.

The pedal has a simple user interface featuring ‘Dry’ volume, ‘Synth’ volume and two control knobs that provide control over each preset’s parameters.

Electro-Harmonix Founder, Mike Matthews, stated: “The Synth9 may be the greatest member of our 9 Family of pedals yet! From searing lead synths to spacey synth pads and deep, funky synth bass grooves, it’s all accessible.”


Demo Video

Electro-Harmonix SYNTH9 Synthesizer Machine


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Fri May 12, 2017 4:46 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
got the C9-another great EHX pedal !

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Fri May 12, 2017 6:19 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
paigan0 wrote:
Posted: Fri May 12, 2017 7:46 am
EHX "9" Pedals


but as a keyboard player, I've always envied the pedal boards of the guitar player.

I have a Nord Lead II, early virtual analog synthesiser that has no "effects" built in, so I run it thru my PODX3 Live which gives me a "pedal board". Fun. I've always loved EHX, every pedal i've ever had was a gas. Even modified a Delux Memory Man, putting the footswitches "outboard" so I could tweak the knobs on the fly for crazy bass guitar effects back in the day. Those new pedals sound COOL. Congratulations on getting into the stomp of things!

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Fri May 12, 2017 8:59 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
As I've mentioned elsewhere, I have the Mel9 and C9, and really like them both. Would love to hear the Synth 9 on stick. Especially in regards to what it does that say, my Roland gear cant do (GP10, VG99) in regards to synth sounds.

any chance of a recording?

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Fri May 12, 2017 10:05 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
Godsmonkey wrote:
As I've mentioned elsewhere, I have the Mel9 and C9, and really like them both. Would love to hear the Synth 9 on stick. Especially in regards to what it does that say, my Roland gear cant do (GP10, VG99) in regards to synth sounds.

any chance of a recording?
GM, I'd say chance of a recording in the high 90s! (Actually 100%. But high 90s that it won't suck so bad that I won't want to share it! But then 92% of all internet statistics are made up on the spot.) :ugeek:

But unfortunately, probably not this weekend. We'll see how much time I have, but it's Mother's Day weekend and I might not get to it yet. But I will definitely share what I find!

I want to hear more about the MEL9, too. That had some really cool sounds from the Mellotron.

And thanks guys, Android, Boaz!

Another review/demo:


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Fri May 12, 2017 3:05 pm
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
I have the first one that came out - the B9 and have it on my Stick pedal board. I spent decades playing a 1970 instrument called a Guitorgan which used frets and strings as a matrix of switches to activate the guts of a 60s sounding organ kinda like a Farfisa. Played thru a Leslie 147 tho it had a great jazz, blues & rock organ sound and wasn't a bad electric guitar either. It broke down a little too often and I finally retired it and got a Roland midi rig for my G&L ASAT which I also played for years in R&B, Americana Roots and Funk bands.

But this thing here works so well without all that crap it's worth every penny. I only like 3 - maybe 4 sounds on it so that's a limitation. I have it hooked up to the bass side of my bamboo Grand with a mini volume pedal to bring it in and out of the mix. I tried the C9 and it's just as good - just more different sounds. I only like 2 of its sounds so I didn't get it. There others are all good too. I just wish they had a lot more sounds.


Fri May 12, 2017 4:56 pm
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
Paigan0 - Have you tried it on the bass side of the NS?

I heard these pedals don't work for bass... I want to get synth sounds for my bass side...

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Sat May 13, 2017 7:55 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
Skydiver wrote:
Paigan0 - Have you tried it on the bass side of the NS?

I heard these pedals don't work for bass... I want to get synth sounds for my bass side...

Dean! Great question! I'm so glad you asked this, because I thought I knew the answer in advance and I was GOING to say that "It works down to what would be the A string on a 4-string bass guitar," because that's what all the reviewers--and EHX!--had said.

If you see the demo video right above your post, you'll see that they alternate between demoing the sounds on the guitar and then on 4-string bass. He plays the low string even (but above the low A of course).

But I hadn't even tried the bass side on it. So I changed plugs and found to my surprise that it tracked all the way down as low as my NS/Stick could go, even the open low B! WTF? That's not supposed to work that low.

But also, another unpleasant surprise: some of the lower notes keep ringing on the SYNTH9, even though the note was tapped and let go. It requires a very careful touch and some string muting as you go to get those notes to start their decay. I guess if I am sloppy and do a slight pull-off when I release my tapping finger, that will re-trigger the SYNTH9. A more careful technique would probably fix that.

But still, what the frickity frick-frock? I tried all 9 patch sounds and they all tracked as low as the low B! Someone write EHX and ask them WTF?

I might need to put out that video PDQ!

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Sat May 13, 2017 8:26 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
Okay, quick update: on some of the patches, some of the oscillators do indeed bottom out at that low A. I think there are 4 oscillators. One or two continue to play the low note--and it's not the dry signal of the NS, it's the synth oscillators making pitches. That makes some weird intervals in the lowest notes, where the low A plays with the even lower bass notes. But I swear some patches sound just fine, even at the lower range.

There must be an oscillator or two reserved for making the portamento sliding effect, maybe? But those notes wouldn't slide down below, would they?

I don't get it. But some patches and sounds work fine even below that low A, and with none of the dry signal. It's definitely synth. And some sounds bottom out at the low A. Hmmm. :? :?:

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Sapphire Railboard, #6763, MR
Wenge-on-Wenge NS/Stick, #170130, Bass 4ths
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Sat May 13, 2017 8:39 am
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Post Re: EHX "9" Pedals
Skydiver wrote:
Paigan0 - Have you tried it on the bass side of the NS?

I heard these pedals don't work for bass... I want to get synth sounds for my bass side...


I have used the C9 on the bass side, and get good playability down to around F# on the lowest bass string. The Mel9 is a little higher, and on both it depends on the patch you are using.

As was mentioned above, not every sound will appeal to you. On the Mel9, I use the Cello, strings and the high chorus most. The flute on occasion.

The C9 TBH I tend to your the Lord Purple and Prog sounds only. But on the bass side, both sound good when mixed with the sticks sound.

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Sat May 13, 2017 1:57 pm
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