Review: Eventide Space Reverb And Beyond

Studio grade reverbs and more in a pedal   11-Oct-11

12:56 mins    

You always know that when you buy Eventide, you're buying top quality studio-standard effects. The previous pedals in the range have all gone some way in proving this, the TimeFactor, PitchFactor (see our review), and ModFactor (see our review) are all great pedals, so how does the new Space pedal weigh in?

Well, the advertising slogan invites you to get lost in a “Blackhole” of a reverb. As a part-time astrophysics enthusiast (what can I say, I was listening to Brian May and Hawkwind from a young age), I found this more than a little exciting. I don't usually get excited about reverb, for me reverb has always been a studio effect, it's not something I'd use creatively on guitars, perhaps if I was recording an acoustic artist I'd dabble into some plate reverb. But that's just me, and I know an awful lot of people for whom reverb is the backbone of their sound.

If that's you then I'm going say right-off-the-bat that you should consider picking up some extra hours at work to fund this pedal. It sounds phenomenal, the basic reverb sounds are incredibly accurate, and the more extreme and 'mangled' reverb sounds are ace. There are 12 basic algorithms from which you can create your reverb sounds, these are:
  • Hall
  • Plate
  • Room
  • Spring
  • Blackhole
  • Reverse
  • Shimmer
  • ModEchoVerb
  • Dualverb
  • MangledVerb
  • TremeloVerb
  • DynaVerb

When I say “basic”, I actually mean “extremely complicated”. But the idea is that you can use a number of parameters to alter these sounds in very creative ways. My favourite example was that you could alter the tension on the 'spring' reverb and really model your own spring unit. Eventually I got it sounding like the old knackered spring in my Roland GA60!

The basic parameters are mix level (dry vs wet signal), a three-band EQ featuring 'high', 'low' and 'contour', a delay-knob which either affects pre-delay or delays the actual dry signal depending on which algorithm you are using, and a number of other effects. As with the delay, many of the other controls varied depending on which algorithm the pedal was set to, but the 'X' and 'Y' knobs controlled anything including:
  • Decay
  • Diffusion
  • Early Reflections
  • Distance (of transducer from plate driver, or room from source)
  • Tremelo Speed
  • Tremelo Intensity
  • Echo Feedback
  • Modulation Depth
  • Modulation Rate

So there you go, there's a lot you can do there. That seems to be the common theme with Eventide, I can imagine the board meetings now:

Employee A: “Okay we need to start work on a new pedal, we've booked out the conference room for an entire day so that we can get it done.”
Employee B: “How about a reverb pedal with 12 of our high quality studio algorithms and effects, and packed full of parameters which can all be easily accessed and changed to give the user a fantastic sounding and very intuitive stomp-box?”
Employee A: “Sounds great. Lets go to lunch.”

But for all of my enthusiasm over the Eventide Space pedal, there is only one problem, it really positively most definitely certainly isn't for everyone. It's for absolute effect-nuts.

A perfect pedal for those of you who are in a post-rock or a space-rock sound, in fact it's a great pedal for many hyphen-based rock genres, it's probably good for prog-rock as well... but we'll draw the line at punk-rock. I would recommend for those just looking for a relatively affordable and decent sounding basic reverb pedal that you go for the TC Electronic 'Hall of Fame'.

If you have around $570/£499 to spare, then I would recommend the Eventide Space pedal, because it rocks and almost forces you to change your normal playing style to come up with new and crazy sounds. I can't lie, you could get a pretty decent guitar for that money, or a really nice amplifier, but obviously if reverb is your priority then it's definitely worth the investment.

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