The Reverb Thread


Sean Costello (the wizard behind Valhalla DSP) gave a great talk about the history of reverb at an AES PNW meeting in 2015 – this is a fun & interesting listen; slides & audio are still up on the AES site:


It’s the most self-consciously 80s look I’ve seen since the old ART and Ensoniq stuff, and it will look dated as hell in a few years, but holy carp, I love it. The Stranger Things-esque music was perfect, too.


Just wanted to add that I really hate that the Z-DSP won’t recall which of the 8 presets you are using. It’s not hard to mash the button to get where you want, but it’s also feels like an incredibly weird feature to omit.

Otherwise, Halls of Valhalla does not disappoint.


I recently traded my Strymon Flint off my guitar board for a Meris Mercury 7. I ran my Eurorack through it for a couple days and it did not disappoint. A very fun and inspirational pedal. I’d love to use a Polymoon as well!

Unfortunately I needed a reverb in my guitar band, so to the practice space it went. Right now Clouds is the only effect I have in my rack. It feels like a waste to use it for reverb and delay when the granular mode is so fun to play as an additional voice.

I did a random Reverb search for a piece of gear I’ve been interested in for a long time, the Alesia Wedge. Lo-and-behold I found one for <$100, so I bought it. I plan on using it as my synth reverb, and I’m really excited to have a big, stupid, dated effect unit propped up next to my modular. Once I get some furniture sorted out in my home office/studio, I’ll be recording my first solo record. I plan on using the Wedge on everything :grin:


anyone have any thoughts on BAM vs mercury 7? ill be getting one or the other fairly soon…


I don’t own either but the BAM seems more versatile and sounds, across the board, better to my ears. The Mercury 7 is nice, but it seems fairly one-dimensional to me. The BAM also can do some beautiful crunchy stuff that I’ve never heard from anything currently shipping. I have some gorgeous Eventides and I’d still consider getting a BAM too.


I had the Mercury 7 for a while, and although it sounden very nice, I didn’t really gel with it. Sold it and have a BAM on the way. Like @studiodc says, I also belive the BAM is more versatile😊


Most of my BAM exposure comes from @stripes and @fourhexagons music. Maybe I’m not hearing something, but they seem to use them for pretty realistic sounding space. I haven’t really checked out that many demos, can it do more out-there spacey stuff or does it just add that nice texture and and depth that I associate with it?

Now I’m wondering how a pair of Caroline Meteores would get along with synths :thinking:


@emenel might be a good candidate to weigh in on BAM here. If you’re looking for heavily modulated reverbs or shimmer, I’d strongly suggest an Eventide Space which is the King of modulated (and glossy realistic) reverbs. If you’re looking for a flexible, beautiful vintage sounding reverb which can add some gentle warmth-all-the-way-to-crunch, which can put the shine and glue on your sounds, and which can still get HUGE and VAST then the BAM is pretty much your toy.

I’m an Eventide 'verb guy (although I’d love to have some vintage Lexicon units too) - I love deeply modulated reverbs and shimmers and stuff. Nothing else even comes close (not even Strymon’s stuff, as hard as they try), to me. But BAM has this beautiful analogueish sort of sound that’s just got something special to it, too. Both have their place, both are fantastic, but they’re each unique, too.

And then there’s pretty much everything else, like Empress, EHX, Meris, Strymon, etc. They’re fine. But I don’t hear anything special in them, personally. Which might be precisely what some people want - a good, clean, controllable reverb with one or two sounds they love and a couple other options. Space and BAM are deep. You’ll get huge range from them. But they don’t really overlap.


yesssssss. the key is treating it like a physical instrument – it’s incredibly playable. especially fun to use the ‘freeze’ button amid knob turns for weird pitch shifts and sampled-in-the-moment warbles.


Yeah, it doesn’t get as big as SPACE, but the Ambient algorithm can get pretty big. I haven’t used it that way much, though because I tend to fill up the space with more sounds leaving less room for a huge verb.

But I’ll just say, wait til you hear what @stripes did with BAM at Commend over the summer. Our cassette from that show is dropping possibly as soon as next week. Basically, she ran her entire setup through it and opens the set with this short verb that she then modulated by hand (Size param and Freeze button, for sure) and it’s the best sound. Doesn’t sound like a reverb, really, at all. More like a doubling effect with chorusing. Such a warm sound she got.

Whatever the case, it’s really great, as is the rest of her set. Keep an eye out on Commend’s socials and newsletters and stuff, or our respective social feeds to find out when it drops. It’s a limited run and there’s no digital distro at this time, so it’s a catch it while you can sort of party.


@fourhexagons - just a quick note to say I caught that show last summer during one of those NY torrential downpours, and it was beautiful.

I saw you record it, and have been hoping it would pop up on your youtube channel, so it’s great to see it getting an official release!


It may be low-rent for this thread, but I recently picked up a Digitech Polara for less than $100 and it’s been wonderful. I like minimal controls, and it just sounds good no matter where you put it. The “Halo” (shimmer) effect is not as over the top as other versions, and the spring reverb is really nice. I usually camp out on Plate, but all of its modes are terrific with very little fuss. For less than some reverb plugins, it’s been a good buy IMO.


Some of the low-end 'verbs are fantastic. Old Alesis units (Midiverb, etc), even some Boss stomps, Lexicon MX/MPX are all fantastic and still quite affordable (saw a Midiverb I for $35 Canadian recently).


Oh, awesome—you were there!

Yeah, I’m grateful that Commend is releasing it. I, unfortunately, can’t release the video of my full set (which, because of the flourescent lighting I chose to leave on in the room, I spent countless hours editing with overlays of plants and light to make it look better) but excerpts of each of our sets will go on my YouTube and I’ve been given the green light to put the entirety of my own set on my Patreon, so at least a few people will be able to see it.

Thanks for the support ~


Yes! I’m a big fan of the Alesis Midiverb 1 (set me back $25 CAD about 6 years ago).

It looks like a boring box of reverbs that you can’t edit, but it just sounds great with synths. It’s noisy and artificial and weird. Perfect! :slight_smile: The 99 presets are basically variations on “bright/dark” and “small/medium/large” with increasing decay times (up to 20 seconds). You get a small handful of weirdo algorithms too (gated, reverse).


BAM is a magical playable instrument that goes well beyond set + forget reverb duties.


100%. All of the OTO boxes have a magic quality that’s hard to quantify.


I kind of assumed that OTO stuff was “more than meets the eye”.

Guess I’ll start saving up for a BAM :relaxed:


I need to do more of this.