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Any opinions on Arion Flanger? Or other flangers?

10/13/2000 12:17 AM
Any opinions on Arion Flanger? Or other flangers?
I haven't used any effects except fuzz and wah for 20 years. So I'm trying to make up for it now I guess. Trying to find a few starting points. I know Arion is a cheap name but does it sound good? I haven't had a chance to try any out.  
10/13/2000 3:46 PM
Mark Hammer

Most flangers use the same core technology. If a 3-knobber is designed well, yo can probably get the kinds of sounds out of it that please you, but if it isn't designed well then a 4 or 5-knobber may be required to tweak to comfort level.  
Things to watch out for:  
1) Degree of tone-sucking or volume change in bypass mode. Phasers, flangers and chorusses often use FET switching to simply cut the wet signal in and out, leaving the straight signal untouched whether in effect or bypass mode. Some do a better job of managing the straight signal than others.  
2) LFO speed and waveform: Moreso than for chorusses, the characteristics of the LFO really matter. Having a wide range of sweep rates is important for usability, and the waveshape of the LFO can make a big difference in sonic quality and character at slow sweeps.  
3) Initial delay: The tonal character of a flanger changes dramatically when the delay sweep starts from different points. Having an initial delay control is mandatory for a decent unit that will make you enjoy having it.
10/13/2000 7:48 PM
Setting the initial delay on a "modern" flanger
Just curious, would it be possible to add an initial delay control to a "modern" flanger (post SAD-1024 design, ie Ibanez Soundtank FL-5). I guess its really a two part question:  
1) usually would it be controlled by a resistor, or would it be a capacitor thing?  
2) what part of the circuit would it be in: the LFO, the interface, or the delay part?  
Actually, this brings up an interesting question: how do modern flangers work? The BBD scenario is pretty cut and dry but how do you do it without BBD?
10/13/2000 8:09 PM
Mark Hammer

In most instances, the initial delay control is a pot which introduces an additional control voltage that is summed with the voltage coming out of the LFO. What you end up with, once you adjust the sweep width, might be say...a 2-volt triangle wave, sitting on top of a half-volt DC voltage, the latter being introduced by the initial control. Depending on the actual individual design, the initial delay control might have the outside lugs tied to V+ and V- or toe V+ and Gnd. Get a copy of the BOSS BF-2 schematic - available at many archive sites - and look in the lower left hand corner for the initial control to see how it works.  
I'm still trying to get V2 of the Auto-Wah article wrapped up (High Holidays sort of got in the way), but once that gets done, I'll see if I can get back to the BBD article I started which details a bit of how flangers work, in a technical sense. RG has a nice paper on how they work in a conceptual sense, though. Do take a look at it.
10/13/2000 4:43 PM
Matthew Springer
EH Deluxe EM
I just recently aquired a RI Deluxe elctric mistress. Sound sgood and gets that good "jet plane" swooshy sound (run a distortion box into it).  
Sounds ok for what I do and it was cheap. (RI is ~100 or so used)  
I almost never use it without a fuzz or distortion into the input. (Go Team Blackstone!) Can also get sick and twisted, but I find these sounds more useful in the bedroom noodling mode then on stage (at leats so far).
10/16/2000 2:11 AM
Re: Any opinions on Arion Flanger? Or other flangers?
Dave, I've got an arion compressor at home, want it? :) I don't know about the others, but mine is pretty noisy and not much good for pretty much anything. I take it out of the box occasionally and play around with it, but that's about it. They're cheap. I've heard though that the new Danelectros are very cheap, but sound quite good (if you don't mind the occassional FM station) :D  
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