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I am playing a violin with a bridge sensor (currently a Schertler STAT-V http://www.schertler.com/homepage_schertler/statv-en.html). I am looking for good ideas for :

  • Delay pedals
  • Distortion / Overdrive pedals

Much of the tests available on the web are done with electric guitars and although it can help to see basically how the pedal works, it can produce a very different effect on the violin.

I am looking for:

  • A pointer to some good tests for pedals and electric violin
  • List of delay pedals (resp. disto pedals) that could give interesting sounds with a violin input (maybe even designed for violin)

[EDITED to be more specific. Since I believe the topic itself is already quite specific because people are usually asking for guitar effects (very different in terms of attack, impedance, etc...), I think this is enough]

Thanks in advance for your help,

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Consider making your question much more specific than "please give me some general advice on the subject". As it stands it risks being closed as "not a real question". See the FAQ. –  slim Apr 10 '13 at 16:34
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2 Answers

As someone who uses various effects with my electric violin as well as with electric guitars, I can tell you that you don't need any special tests or reviews.

  • Delay pedals

You are right that without the pick attack, a delay sounds different for a violin than for a strummed guitar, but it does sound very similar to a bowed guitar, or when you use volume shaping, so don't worry about this factor. Concern yourself more with quality of sound, accuracy of echoes etc.

If you prefer analogue delay, use that. If you prefer digital, use that, but above all - test a few to see what you prefer.

  • Distortion

Very similar guidance here but the source of sound is less important. As you have less strings, you will have less notes clashing with each other, but you have a wider variety of notes as a guitar is mostly fret-based (excluding bends etc)

Play with some pedals - decide whether you like distortion, fuzz, harsh, buzzy, squealing etc etc etc

tl;dr - follow guitar pedal reviews for general quality guidance, then play with some to find out what you prefer, as effects are incredibly subjective

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I'm in agreement with Dr. Mayhem, but want to add: You won't get the U2/Pink Floyd sound with delay on a violin, because your instrument is all about the sustain, but with say a 300-400ms delay, you can approach the big rock, echo off the back of the the arena sound. And, with distortion, few people use as much as you think they do, so start with the pedal set low, then build to what you need, instead of starting with it dimed. Good luck. –  VarLogRant Apr 11 '13 at 14:57
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Many years ago in the 1980s I favoured a cheap Phaser pedal and processing through an old analogue synth to filter the sound. At the time I was pleased with the unique quality I obtained by this novel combination. I recommend experimenting with unlikely combinations of processing but try to keep it subtle.

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