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I think I'm gonna like this Whammy Pedal

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by JimmyM, Apr 14, 2009.


  1. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    So I got my Whammy IV this afternoon, and plugged it up, went through all the presets, and said to myself, "Now what?" But I just sat down with it for a couple hours, and I'm actually coming up with practical uses for it.

    The detuner is killer, for example. We've dropped the keys on a handful of songs to where I need to hit a low D, and I don't have time to detune manually or pick up a second bass that I don't want to bring. It's a tad glitchy on the D but nobody will ever notice on a gig. It's got good sounding octaves, too. Not quite as clean as the Micro Pog but they're believable on a gig. I'm finding more use for it as an octave divider than I thought I would. And the detuner makes a nifty chorus should I ever need to make people's teeth ache ;)

    One thing that I wish it would do, though, is whammy in 4ths and 5ths instead of just octaves. Molten Voltage apparently does a mod that lets you do that, but I don't dig how the knob is hard to change on the fly. Too bad they dropped those preset switches...that would have been the ticket. Got to read up on what you can do with its MIDI control. I hope it does more than just stepping through presets with a MIDI switch.

    Anyway, I might have a hard time finding a use for thise Micro Pog I got coming this week. I kind of thought the Whammy was a gimmicky pedal without much practical use unless you do solos, but I'm pleasantly surprised by its usefulness. It might actually be a keeper.
     
  2. TheMutt

    TheMutt Guest

    Apr 28, 2007
    Although it's ridiculously huge, my Digitech GNX4 does the 4th/5th 5th/1oct etc that the bass whammy is prized for. It's quite silly of them to not add it in to their standalone whammy pedals if you ask me.
    Glad that the whammy is working out for you Jimmy! Personally, I can't find a use for it on bass because the tracking is not as good as my micro POG.
     
  3. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    San Francisco, CA, USA
    Jimmy, the MIDI footswitch option is only for switching between presets. You won't be able to get anything more than those presets without modification (a la Molten Voltage).

    The only inexpensive pedals I know of which will let you whammy in any semitone you like are the Boss PS-3 Pitch Shifter/Delay and the Boss PS-5 Super Shifter. But for those, you need an expression pedal to do that, and they don't sound anything like the Digitech Whammy.
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I was afraid of that. Well thanks for the info, Boo.
     
  5. Thats not what the manual says. The manual says you can use midi to sweep through the stages of the expression pedal (really cool), and to bypass the pedal.

     
  6. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    San Francisco, CA, USA
    [checks manual]

    I forgot about this section. :D

    It requires extensive MIDI programming and experimenting to get the desired pitch-shift results. I'm also not sure how this is affected by the actual treadle position, and what might happen when you move said treadle physically after making adjustments via MIDI...

    Anyone here on TB ever tried this?
     
  7. i know matthew bellamy has a midi strip on some of his guitars that controls the whammy via midi. i have NO idea how they programmed it, but instead of foot on pedal, its finger on strip. no idea how it deals with tracking exactly.. does the strip default? does it resume from the last position? does it jump to wherever he sets his finger?

    if 0-64 turn it off, and 65-127 turn it on.. what changes the patch?
     
  8. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    San Francisco, CA, USA
    What I posted was only part of the manual. You can use MIDI program change commands to change presets.

    I don't really know much about MIDI other than the bare basics... so if you're curious to learn more, check out the manual and start hunting for MIDI threads!
     
  9. B.C.

    B.C. Supporting Member

    Jun 28, 2005
    Indiana
    Correct, and I've found various codes for this using a P Basic micro controller. It can be done and tracking isn't bad. The strip acts as a voltage divider so whereever your finger is set the corresponding resistance(hence voltage) controls the pitch.

    I'm sure people make this stuff and if you wanted to do it on your own, it would be cheap and easy. :)
     
  10. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    If anyone knows how to program it to where you can go up a 5th, please divulge that info! I'd also like a 4th up as well if you know how to do it. Also, can you go somewhere and actually download the programming to it?

    Also, how the hell do you do MIDI programming for it? ;)
     
  11. B.C.

    B.C. Supporting Member

    Jun 28, 2005
    Indiana
    Well, the Midi is not bad, basically all you are doing is telling the micro controller to crunch numbers for you. I have the code for said number crunching, and I can explore the 5th option. I shouldn't be to bad. :)

    I'll get back to you on that.
     
  12. kevteop

    kevteop

    Feb 12, 2008
    York, UK
    Funnily enough I was reading the Whammy IV manual yesterday trying to figure this out for myself. The business about using a MIDI signal to pitch shift did pique my interest at first, but I don't think it would have enough granularity to accurately set up different pitches. MIDI values range from 0 to 127, 12 notes in the chromatic scale, 128 into 12 is likely to leave you with some ugly-sounding fractions on some pitches. The tones that would work out would be the minor 3rd, flat 5th and major 6th.

    I think if it was practical, Molten Voltage would've done it. Although I don't know how their pitch limit mods work.
     
  13. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Well thanks folks...no need to jump through hoops or anything...I just figured if someone had this info handy I could give a shot at trying it out.
     
  14. B.C.

    B.C. Supporting Member

    Jun 28, 2005
    Indiana
    I'll post the code for you, and the chip, just let me find it.

    The chip is like 10 bucks from Paralax :)
     
  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    That's cool, BC...thanks if you can, no biggie if you can't. What is the chip? Is that something I need installed in it before I can do this?
     

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