When looking into the effects list of multi-effect pedals (ex: Boss Gt6, Zoom ms50g...), the manual clearly identifies the effects that the original pedals were modeled from. And recent multi-effect pedals with their modern audio processors are able to highly imitate the original effects(amps, drive, reverb, delay).

Do these companies pay royalties to the original manufacturers when they include copied sounds from them? If I buy multi-effects due to their practicality in size and cost, am I supporting the original pedal/amp makers who have been manufacturing for years and deserve credit for the signature sound they made?

  • 1
    This is a question of law so it is not on topic here. You could try law.stackexchange.com. – Todd Wilcox Dec 12 '17 at 13:05
  • 4
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about law or business. – Todd Wilcox Dec 12 '17 at 13:06
  • I doubt it. After all, analog pedal manufacturers don't pay a license to ibanez for making a green overdrive pedal. If somebody rips off a patented circuit, then maybe the original designer deserves some compensation, but I've seen so many copied circuit designs yet no lawsuits. But law might disagree. – Ye Dawg Dec 12 '17 at 23:18
  • Ok I'll move the question to law. just thought it needed a musician background to at least understand single pedal vs multieffect. – Alexander Dec 13 '17 at 10:15

The credit they deserve is legally called a patent. It is the time granted to the developer of an original idea to have the exclusive right to produce things and collect royalties from others who use their work. In the US that period is currently between 14 and 20 years. I’m willing to bet that if the effect is older than 20 years nobody is paying the original people royalties anymore.

I could be wrong, but other manufacturers Legally would not have to. An effect might not even be patentable now that I think about it but that’s another story.

If you really want to support the originals then you can just buy their pedals In addition to the combination one. I’m willing to bet that side by side they won’t sound exactly the same.

  • surely the name is also a trademark ? The design would have to contain a new and inventive step to gain a patent. – bigbadmouse Apr 17 '18 at 12:59

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.