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Stomp King SK-4 Anacho VST Analog Delay
Bob Leggitt | Saturday, 7 January 2012 |
The Stomp King Anacho is a departure from the boredom of clinical and precise digital delays. Instead, it takes your echo sound back to the 1970s and 1980s with a simulation of analogue delay/echo. Analogue delays did not send back accurate repeats which precisely duplicated the original input signal. The repeats had flaws – distortions and elements of analogue pitch drift – and with each repeat the sound degraded slightly further so that the tenth repeat would be markedly different in its character from the first. This is the effect you get with the SK-4 Anacho.
With the Anacho, you’ll notice a number of differences in terms of flexibilty as compared with a digital delay. Analogue delay/echo stomp boxes could not produce long delay times like the digital boxes which followed them. So in order that this effect doesn’t stray beyond the realms of authenticity, the delay times have been deliberately limted in keeping with those which could realistically be produced with retro analogue electronics. For similar reasons, you’ll also find the Repeat control won’t notch up to ‘infinite’. Finally, the Anacho is a monaural effect. If you want to use stereo effects (such as a stereo chorus or the SK-2 Sympho) in conjunction with the Anacho, place them after the Anacho in the chain. If you want to go for the full retro feel, place the Anacho last in the FX chain. It will then convert every preceding effect into mono format. The Real Rotor rotary speaker effect should always be placed after the Anacho in an FX chain.
The first knob (going from left to right) adjusts the delay Time. The higher the value, the longer the delay between each repeat.
The second knob is labelled Repeat, and determines the number of repeats. The higher the value, the more repeats you’ll hear. With Repeat set at zero, the unit produces a single slapback echo.
Next comes the Amount knob. This is effectively a volume control for the echo circuit. With the Amount set to 100 (its highest value), the first repeat (echo) will match the volume of the original input signal. With the Amount set to 0, you’ll hear no echo at all.
Finally, the Original knob controls the volume of the original sound. With Original set to 100, the output volume of the original input signal with be unchanged. Reducing the Original parameter steadily takes down the volume of the original signal, until it reaches 0, when you’ll hear no original signal at all. Being able to take down the volume of the original signal helps in simulating some dub style effects.
Time: 88, Repeat: 46, Amount: 46, Original: 100.
A great working patch for adding classic analogue echo to percussive and staccato sounds (particularly synth arpeggios). The Time is set to roughly match a track with a tempo of 160bpm. Increase the time value for slower tracks. Reduce it to match something faster. Analogue delays didn’t have precise syncing of course. Getting a rough tempo match rather than a precise one adds to the retro ambience.
Time: 0, Repeat: 10, Amount: 28, Original: 100.
Classic analogue delay doubling. These settings will make any staccato or percussive attack instrument sound bigger and thicker.
Time: 155, Repeat: 75, Amount: 91, Original: 50.
A dub-style echo with plenty of character. The Time is set to repeat in loose triplets over a 140bpm track. Try it on a sparse rhythm guitar stab in a track of that tempo. Notice how the repeats get dirtier and more grungey as they die away.
A higher volume input signal is likely to produce a more grungey delay. You can therefore control the grunginess of the effect by tailoring the volume of your VSTi to suit. This will not affect the fidelity of, or in any way distort, the basic instrument sound – it just adds extra grit to the repeats.
DOWNLOAD, INSTALLATION AND USE
To download, click the download link at the bottom of the page and then follow the prompt(s).
Place the .dll file in your VST Plugins folder, and when you start your VST host it should detect the new software. If you normally have to add your VST instruments and effects manually, you’ll need to use the same process here.
Please be aware that the Stomp King effects are home-made products, released as freeware, with no guarantees of any kind. Every effort is made to ensure that the effects work well and enhance your recordings. However, they cannot be tested on a wide range of systems, and therefore there exists the potential for problems. In downloading, you agree to absolve Planet Botch of all responsibility should a problem of any kind arise as a result of you downloading, installing and/or using the .dll file.
Once the effect is installed, simply switch on the SK-4 by clicking its On/Off stomp component, then use the four parameter knobs to adjust the effect to taste. The SK-4 has digital readouts under its parameter knobs, allowing you to note your settings (and perhaps pass them on) when you dial in a combination you really like.
Download the Stomp King SK-4 Anacho
The rest of the range is available via the main VST FX Download Page.