When I starting rehearsing and gigging with my Elmwood Modena60, I had a simple board with some pedals pre-gain and some stuff in the loop. The board sounded good but I was used to having presets in my rack-setup and I was ‘struggling’ to get used to this setup. I’m not a great dancer and tap-dancing the board was a nightmare sometimes.
So I wanted to re-build the board so I can have presets and I started reading up on my options. After finding a lot of info and testing a couple of units, I settled on the Musicom Lab EFX MkII as the heart of the board. This unit allows me to loop the pre-gain pedals, program presets and control the post-gain FX via midi. On top of that, it has 4 switching functions so it will also switch channels etc on your amp.
The next item on my shopping list was the post-gain fx unit. I looked at some different units from Line6 etc. All had something going for them but I also had to keep in mind that I had limited real estate on the pedalboard. In the end I decided to get the TC Electronic Nova System. I have always loved TC Electronic units and absolutely dig my GForce. I scored one of the red limited edition versions and am really happy with it.
And finally there were the pre-gain pedals. I lifted most of them off my original board. The CAE Wah is just an outstanding wah pedal with good flexibility, the dual-conductor setup gives you 2 different tones and I love both. Then in the loops are 4 pedals that are simply outstanding. First I have the outstanding Empress Compressor, a fantastic pedal that works great as a comp or a signal boost. Then the Red Witch Deluxe Moon Phaser gets me a lot more then just phaser. The El Musico Loco Blisterlilly overdrive went straight from the post office onto the board and is there to stay and finally one of my all-time favorite OD/Boosts, a LovePedal Eternity.
I wired up the board using Mogami cable and Neutrik/Rean plugs. It’s pretty tidy as the board is fully loaded but the outcome is more than excellent. AND most importantly, the board sounds FANTASTIC! The entire board is powered by the Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2, I have the Korg Pitchblack tuner on there and a homemade interface.
This set of tools, combined with a nice selection of guitars and my amp give me all the flexibility I could want, but the package is still relatively small to work well on smaller stages.