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Mini review: Groove Regulator

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by willsellout, Apr 13, 2009.


  1. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Sweetwater Sales Engineer
    Well I ordered this last week after getting sick of not having a good filter. I've owned a lot of filters including the famed Lovetone Meatball, which this pedal is based off of.

    Just based off of my initial tinkering I am tempted to say that the Groove Regulator actually surpasses the Lovetone. Not necessarily in tone (although it easily keeps up), but in usability. Think of this pedal as a Meatball without the mess. Take all of the weird or unusable sounds that come with the Meatball's unending tweakability and keep only the usable sounds, and make it easier to achieve those sounds and you have the Groove Regulator.

    This pedal comes in a relatively small package, lightweight, powder coated, overall pretty solid feeling. The input jacks and nuts look to be plastic? Not sure if that will be problematic in the future?

    The GR has a lot of the same features as the Meatball but makes them more usable. On the Meatball you have hi, a couple mid settings, and a low setting. To me they all had their downfalls and I never really felt that they overlapped well enough. The Groove Regulator takes those settings and gets rid of the middle and makes both the high and low settings incredibly useful; a definite improvement over the original IMO. It also has an up/down filter sweep that work as advertised. There aren't any huge volume spikes, which is really nice. It's not that its a tame filter, because it absolutely isn't, but its more refined and smooth.

    It can go from very thick and juicy to thin and quacky with a few minor adjustments. The down mode is one of the more useful that I've heard and you can get some really cool vowel type sounds out of it. I'm really digging the overall ease of use.

    I ordered the pedal late Thursday night and it shipped Friday morning. Spencer sent me an email letting me know that it shipped and gave me a tracking number, really excellent business practices get a thumbs up from me.

    I'm really excited about this pedal. If you like filters like I do, you owe it to yourself to give it a try. I'd take this over the Meatball any day of the week. Somehow Spencer took the Meatball, simplified it, and improved it. I'm not sure how he did it but this is the first pedal I've tried that has kept up with the Meatball; and at 200.00 bucks it's about a 3rd of the price.

    I couldn't be happier with this pedal, it really exceeded my expectations.


    Dan
     
  2. Jeff in TX

    Jeff in TX Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2000
    Lone Star State
    Your review couldn't be more timely. I have the GR and am really liking it but a little voice in the back of my head kept wondering how it really compared to the Meatball.

    You have just saved me $500 and a ton of buyer's remorse!

    And, I'll sleep a little better tonight! :)
     
  3. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Sweetwater Sales Engineer
    The Meatball is a great pedal but for me it was simply overdone. The GR is kind of a simplified version of the Meatball but it isn't lacking. I honestly feel that he did a way better job with the lo and hi settings. The Lovetone's hi setting was really quacky and a little too thin. You can get some cool sounds if you played with it enough but it didn't come naturally like it does to the GR. The difference between the GR and the Meatball is that you have to work with the Meatball to achieve the same sounds that come to the GR naturally.

    The lo settings on the Meatball also had a tendency to overwhelm my speakers as well. I had to pay particular attention to the intensity knob, especially in down mode. From what i've seen of the GR I don't really have to think about that as much.

    I definitely think that if you took the Meatball and the GR and A/B'd them, you would find that most, if not all, of the really good settings on the Meatball were available in the GR. They would also be easier to accomplish with the GR.


    Dan
     
  4. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Sweetwater Sales Engineer
    I also feel more comfortable taking the GR out on gigs without worry of some jerk trying to steal it:D
     
  5. whoatherechunk

    whoatherechunk

    Apr 4, 2008
    great review!
     
  6. Spencer!

    Spencer!

    Jun 25, 2006
    Seattle
    Owner, Pike Amplification & 3Leaf Audio
    This is the part of the circuit that's completely different from the Meatball. If I remember correctly, the lo setting is the equivalent of the mid-lo setting on the meatball, and the hi setting is something entirely different.
     
  7. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Sweetwater Sales Engineer
    Yeah I can tell. It's similar to the mid-lo setting but honestly it's waaaay better and the hi setting is really beautiful. The lo setting on the Meatball was just too much, I never used it. The high setting on your pedal gives you more high end quack and warble but still retains some thickness and low end, whereas the Lovetone's hi setting didn't do much other than offer up a little "quack" in the top end.


    Dan
     
  8. Spencer!

    Spencer!

    Jun 25, 2006
    Seattle
    Owner, Pike Amplification & 3Leaf Audio
    I've had some questions about this, but they're the same Neutrik jacks that are used by Aguilar, Epifani, Eden (ok, bad example!), and many other quality manufacturers. I haven't had any issues with them yet.
     
  9. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Sweetwater Sales Engineer
    They seem sturdy enough. If there are problems they are a really cheap fix. I'm not concerned.
     
  10. tigerbass

    tigerbass Supporting Member

    Jul 28, 2006
    Crown Point, IN
    I love mine! Very versatile...seems like just about any adjustment you do to it sounds killer! I like it WAY better than anything I've tried.
    Maybe Spencer needs to make a fuzz box next! :bag:
     
  11. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Sweetwater Sales Engineer
    I told him he needs to make a workup of the Lovetone Doppelganger:D

    If you are interested in a guy that excels at Fuzz pedals, check out Guttermouth Electronics. I have a few pedals of his including an incredible fuzz. But from what I hear, his Catastrofuzz is the bomb.


    Dan
     

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