Deluxe Memory Man 1100-TT
Electro-Harmonix created a legendary tone tool with the Memory Man. Its echoes powered the sound of early U2 and later incarnations featuring modulation dared other analog delays to compete with the incredible sound it produced. There have been many versions of the Deluxe Memory Man, including a tap tempo version that was very limited due to a scarce supply of NOS Panasonic bucket brigade chips. However, Xvive has carefully developed its own replica of that chip, and the Deluxe Memory Man with Tap Tempo has been reborn. And oh, what a glorious rebirth.
The Memory Man has all the standard controls you know and love: Blend, Gain, Rate and Depth for modulation tweaking, Feedback, and Delay. There are also five available tap subdivisions, and the option to control any parameter via expression pedal. It also features an effects loop, allowing you to have your delay repeats colored by your favorite pedals. I had a lot of fun with a reverb pedal in the loop, as my dry guitar sounded fairly standard, but the repeated signal sounded like a symphony in a haunted castle, with modulated delay drenched in ambient reverb. And let me say this about the tap tempo: It works great. We’ve all had a pedal where the tap function was wonky, and never seemed to capture what we tapped into it. Nothing is more frustrating when you’re in the middle of a song with the band and you can’t get your delay tempo right. No such problem with the Memory Man, and you have the convenience of running an external tap switch if that’s your style. I also think the two-tone blue design looks really cool, and it reminds me of a winter coat I had as a kid that I wore to brave the Michigan winters.
But enough jibber-jabber—let’s talk about the sound. This thing sounds magnificent. If you’ve ever used a Memory Man, you know that it is brighter than most analog delays, but still has a beautiful warmth, and modulation to boot. It’s bright enough to play a rhythmic pattern with, but warm enough to sit in the background without being obtrusive. In my opinion, it is the ultimate analog delay. This version is no different, and offers deep and luscious tones as well as wacky, warped oscillations. My personal favorite setting was with Blend and Feedback around 1 o’clock, and both Rate and Depth around 9 for a subtle, yet noticeable, modulation. This gave me access to everything from wobbly slapback to epic solo echoes. The delays are warm and clear but not generic in any way; this pedal has its own character, and that’s a very good thing. If you’re into weird noises, you can push the pedal to its limits by tapping in times slower than one second, which yields dying ring-mod style notes that actually sound quite good in certain context.
The only drawback I could find with this pedal is a slight amount of noise on the repeats. There is no noise when the pedal is engaged, but there is a bit of hiss with each repeat. It didn’t bother me, and I doubt anyone in your band or the crowd will notice it, but it’s worth mentioning. However, this is an analog delay, and it is the nature of such devices to make a little noise here and there. But make no mistake—this pedal is dope, and you need to try it. Electro-Harmonix has created so many legendary pedals, and this one deserves a spot with its peers. If you’re in the market for a beautiful sounding analog delay with substantial features—and at a price that’s more than fair—do yourself a favor and check this one out. I have no doubt it will end up on my board in the not too distant future.
What We Like:
Incredible sounding delay with the ability to control all parameters. Effects loop. Tap tempo works flawlessly.
Some noise that is typical of analog delays, but if you want an ultra-clean delay with zero noise, analog probably isn’t your thing.