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MXR Phaser owners. 90 or 100?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by MGR, Apr 15, 2015.

  1. MGR

    MGR Banned

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    Yes, I know this has been asked a million times, and yes I've read those other threads, but I wanted to ask now for some updated opinions, so please bear with yet another MXR Phase 90 vs 100 thread.

    So, that's out of the way. MXR Phaser owners, please compare and contrast the 90 vs 100 in your experiences. I am leaning towards the 100 for the added control, but the 90 is so simple and good sounding I am finding it hard to pass up. I cannot and will not buy both.

    Basically what I am looking for is a phaser that does not drop low end or volume, actually grabs the signal rather than impose a swooshing LFO on top of it, and sounds downright funky and mean. The bumped up mids of the 90 sounds so amazing, but would I be missing anything that the 100 offers?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Can't answer your specific question, but I'm trying phasers out now myself and I can say that the Mooer Orange 90 definitely drops some low end compared to the MXR Phase 90....just in case you were thinking about the Mooer :)

    I have both right now, along with a VFE Enterprise but I wouldn't consider the Mooer or the MXR 'funky and mean' which is what I'm looking for. The Enterprise by far is the best of the phasers I have (although I love the orange look of the MXR!) but I want something more like an envelope filter but not that quacky. From what I'm seeing in the effects forum, the Mr. Black Gilamondo is THE phaser to do that.

    But, of those three, the Enterprise is the funkiest and meanest because of the feedback control. It can get nasty. For now, I'm going to stick with flanger, so my Enterprise is in the classifieds but I want to try a Gilamondo some day!
    RiZzBot and Somnambulance like this.
  3. Somnambulance


    Jun 6, 2014
    Mr. Black does all kinds of discount days and stuff too if you sign up for the mailing list.
  4. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Oh cool, I'll do that. Thanks!
    Somnambulance likes this.
  5. i want to get a phase 100. i also want to try out my bro's evh phaser. i can't try it out at the moment.i if you want me to try it out, i'll actual put in effort into finding the cables to use the effect.

    from what you say, i'd say the phase 100 is what you're looking for.
  6. I have been looking at the Phase 99, 2 Phase 90 in one box double the sweepness.
    punchclock likes this.
  7. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    Keep in mind that the Phase 100 is fundamentally different from the Phase 90. It's a 10 stage phaser where the 90 is a four stage phaser. In general as you go up in the number of stages (2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 etc) the phasing tone becomes brighter and more "shimmery" and a bit less "warm" or "organic" sounding as well. The Phase 100 (to my ears at least) sounds more like other 6 stage phasers than a 10 stage but in that pedal four of the stages are "fixed" and I'm not quite sure what that means.

    But the larger point is that it's not just a Phase 90 with extra conrols.
    Billy C., CPplaysBASS and mouthmw like this.
  8. Mosfed


    Apr 21, 2013
    Chamonix Mont-Blanc
    Partner - CCP Pedals
    I like the Phase 90 script custom show reissue. Perfect 4 stage phasing.

    I got the Analogman version with an internal volume trim pot, true bypass, an orange Led and a boss power jack added. Sound awesome!!!
    punchclock likes this.
  9. BazzTard

    BazzTard Banned

    Love my Phase 90, always sounds just right in the mix, my MIJ Boss PHR1 stays in it's box.

    The Phase 90 doesn't lose the low end, and is not too 'shimmery'.
  10. MGR

    MGR Banned

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    Yes, understood. Of the two then, which is better suited to my need for no low end loss and a more "grabby" sound? BTW, are you the guy who returned the Gilamondo for the Bad Stone? My Small Stone just doesn't fit the bill for me with bass, but that Bad Stone seems intriguing. How does it stack up to the MXR sound?
  11. mouthmw


    Jul 19, 2009
    Aaah, I can chime in here. Keep in mind though, this is all pretty subjective and personal opinion.

    I started on Phase 90, and it's a great plug and play phaser, no doubt. In fact, I wouldn't mind using one if I had no choice. It sounds great on bass, works well in the mix, but it has a mid bump which at times became a bit annoying to me. I'm talking about the block logo version here, I was never really interested in the script version since it's more mellow (although that might work better for some). So with the mid bump, it sort of became a bit of an annoyance and I grew tired of the tone somewhat so I decided to get something else.

    Enter Earthquaker Devices Grand Orbiter. A really nice sounding, but very dark sounding phaser. More mellow than the Phase 90, but boy it could go deep. Unfortunately, for my needs and taste, it didn't work in the mix. Vibrato option was cool, but ultimately useless to me. Sounded a bit too mellow and too dark for me to have any use for it with the band. So I sold it, and got...

    Phase 100. Oh yea baby. Now that thing is IT for me. Amazing liquidy pronounced sounding phaser. Different flavor from Phase 90, but sound oh so good on bass. I can do those crazy fuzz + phaser sweeps or just add some funky modulation or even do great Lesliesque stuff by upping the rate. In fact, I use it on our "No Quarter" cover since we don't have a keyboardist and it sounds great. No mid bump, and it's still awesomely pronounced in the mix, but it doesn't overwhelm it like Phase 90 did sometimes. And with different controls on how pronounced you want it, I can also use some slight modulation for quieter passages when I feel like it. Juan Alderete sold it for me, check out his short video on his Phase 100. If you dig that tone like I did, than that's it man. A few The Mars Volta songs also feature it, and it sounds great.

    Ultimately, get what sounds better to you I guess.
    MGR likes this.
  12. LeonD

    LeonD Supporting Member

  13. MGR

    MGR Banned

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    OP here. As far as subjective and personal opinions go, this was exactly what I'm looking for. My inclination leans towards the 100 and Juan's vid did push me towards that. However, doesn't the mid-bump in the 90 cause it to become more pronounced in a live setting? If so, isn't that somewhat desirable? Or is it just that the 100 simply beats out the 90 for you in sound, mid-bump or not?
  14. mouthmw


    Jul 19, 2009
    A very fine question indeed! The mid bump definitely makes it more pronounced than say darker sounding phasers. Phase 100 sits also very nice in the mix but I simply prefer the sound of it. I feel like I have more dynamic (loudness wise) control with Phase 100 for when I don't want it to stick out as much, even on the most pronounced setting. If I can sort of put it bluntly - Phase 90 tone wore me off a bit and I ended up using it less and less, Phase 100 doesn't make me grow tired of it but instead I keep finding new ways to use it. That said, Phase 90 is a great phaser, and if you want a really pronounced phaser, it's a great choice.
  15. MGR

    MGR Banned

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    op again. Thanks for that answer. Sounds like the 100 is the way to go because while I do want something more "pronounced," I understand how that can get old real fast. Probably best to go with a slightly subtler, but ultimately more musical pedal, and that sounds like the 100.
    mouthmw likes this.
  16. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    Many years ago I had both.
    The added sounds of the 100 were not all that useful to me
    Honestly, I didn't like either one that much for bass and needed up trying to make the 100 sound like the 90

    If you have the 90 and expect to hear miracles with the 100 in the band mix, I would suggest looking elsewhere
  17. MGR

    MGR Banned

    Jan 18, 2015
    Bronx, NY
    Fair enough. So what would you suggest then?
  18. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    Yeah, I did have a shootout between the Mr. Black and Bad Stone. Both really nice and the Gilamondo is a far better constructed pedal with a great 8 stage sound. But the waveshape is simpler than the Bad Stone and I simply prefer six stages to eight.

    And to be fair, the Phase 90 (and nearly all of the vast number of clones) has never worked for me as far as what I like in phase tones on bass though I've always liked it on guitar. And conversely I liked the Small Stone sound. So take my opinions with a grain of salt since we obviously have different tastes in phasers. To me the Bad Stone is essentially a six stage version of the Small Stone. Relatively dark, warm and chewy but with increased sparkle and shimmer. It does what I'm always looking for in a phaser in terms of sounding connected to the notes I play vs a modulation doing its LFO thing on top of my sound.

    Comparing the two MXR pedals the Phase 90 is more subtle but being 4 stage is also sounds a bit thicker (though compared to the EHX phasers it's brighter and thinner). The Phase 100 is more liquidy, more lush and more peaky. Between the two and for what you're describing I think the 90 is probably what you want. If you want a clone that doesn't have the mid hump the Retro-Sonic is a great phaser based on the script circuit. Slightly more subtle and with a cleaner tone it also has a level knob that I think more phaser pedals should have. You can set it for unity gain or a slight boost which I prefer due to the nature of phasing seemingly dropping your overall level when engaged.
  19. mistergoats


    Jun 24, 2014
    Vancouver BC
    @MGR Not sure how helpful this is, as it's a bit of a custom job, but I had an old DOD FX20B stereo phaser modded for true bypass. The pedal was cheap, and the controls allowed me to dial it in WAY better than a Phase 90. All that tone suck was gone. The bass comes through nice and mean and it does shimmery, but can easily be dialed back for a bit more darkness. The weird part is that there is no volume control. It used to drop volume like mad before the conversion. I left the controls original and doffed the additional out. I use it mostly for guitar now, but I'm very surprised how good it sounds with bass.

  20. bassrich


    Nov 20, 2011
    Sarasota, FL
    I have a P-90 and it is what I expect a phaser to be
    punchclock likes this.

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