I decided that I didn’t really care for the Catalinbread Montavillian Echo – at least, not in the context that I was using it. It seemed to overlap too much with the tones that I get out of the Brigadier. It excelled at spacey, atmospheric self-oscillation. It sounded really good at those settings, but not as warm as what I can coax out of the Brigadier. There are lots of other settings of course, but I wasn’t really pleased with it. Also, there was a substantial volume boost when the pedal is active that I just didn’t bond with. Since I was within the return/exchange period over at Tonefactor, I decided to return it.
I ended up buying a used Line 6 DL4 over at TGP. I know that these things are getting kinda long in the tooth, but they’re still on a lot of boards. I’m gonna give it a shot. I had one for about 5 minutes a couple of years ago. It was an early model (one that still had the tone sucking capacitors in the post-delay section) and I didn’t bond with it. I liked the way that it sounded, but it didn’t work out due to the volume drop when the pedal was engaged.
The one that I have is a more recent revision, and I don’t really notice a volume drop. However, I decided to be proactive and replace the switches that are failure-prone. I bought some SPST momentary switches from Small Bear Electronics and switched them out. The new ones feel much better and should never break on me. I may end up doing other mods to it down the line if I decide to keep it.
It’s too early to really say anything definitive, but I like this pedal so far. I like the fact that you can have three different presets available at any given time. I prefer separate switches for presets as opposed to the way that other pedals such as the DD-20 handle it, where you have to scroll through your settings. Most of the models sound really good, and they are extremely tweakable. You can go from really subtle, conservative slapback delays to truly chaotic noise-pop settings. Of course, I live somewhere in the middle of those worlds, and it seems to suit me just fine.
One reason that I wanted this pedal was for it’s capabilites as a looper. I’m not very good at live looping just yet, but it’s good enough for me to use as a composition/practice tool. I wish that it had slightly longer loop times (without using the 1/2 speed trick) and I wish that it had an undo function. If you make a mistake, you have to start your whole loop over.
Anyway, it’s a cool piece of gear, and I hope that it’ll work out for me. If not, there’s always something else around the corner.