Mooer Pure Octave Polyphonic Guitar Octave Effect
By Chris Loeffler |
Featuring eleven different octave settings with up to five available octaves in a single setting, Mooer Micro Pedals tackles polyphonic octave effects for guitar with the fast and faithful tracking Mooer Pure Octave pedal.
By Chris Loeffler
Up until five years ago, true polyphonic, multi octave effects were unattainable for the guitar player without the assistance of an add-on guitar synthesizer pickup and accompanying synthesizer unit. Early units attempting to offer this effect without a specialized pickup tended to be glitchy and harsh sounding, which is a desirable effect for certain applications but lacks the natural tone many seek. Mooer Micro Pedals looks to provide as many octave options as it can squeeze into a 3” by 1” stomp box.
The Mooer Pure Octave pedal offers eleven different octave settings in their small format, 9v adaptor powered pedal. The pedal features true bypass and blend controls for the Sub octaves, Dry, and Upper octaves.
What You Need to Know
- The tone of the octaves attempts to be as natural sounding as octaves clearly outside the reach of the standard guitar can be. A single octave down offers a fairly tight enveloped, smooth octave down with a subtle, machinegun rapid amplitude modulation. Two octaves down yields deep, surprisingly throaty notes that will challenge any small speaker to spit out. The Sub control features the following combinations of one and two octaves down and (counter intuitively) one octave up- one octave down, two octaves down, and one and two octaves down.
- A single octave up produces chirpy, bright tones that are still decidedly guitar-like without the grit or limited neck range of a typical analog octave effect. Two octaves up yields a piercing, slightly more brittle tone that is undeniably synth like. The Upper control features the following combinations of one and two octaves up and (equally counter intuitive) one octave down- one octave up, two octaves up, one octave down, and one and two octaves up.
- Although all the octaves have high quality sound, the magic of the Mooer Pure Octave comes not from any single one but through the various combinations. The slight volume modulation that accompanies the octave down adds soft movement to the dry signal and fills out the frequency range in the second octave down. The octave up combines with the dry signal for a convincing 12-string guitar sound and creates a solid base for the second octave up to shimmer over to cop convincing pipe organ sounds.
- The Mooer Pure Octave tracks incredibly well, offers no latency (even when run through a virtual amp\_, and never feels out of pace with the guitarist. All notes open, sustain, and decay naturally without getting flabby or glitchy, and the subtle quirks of each octave combine to be greater than the sum of the individual parts.
- The second octave down is deeper than many guitar amplifiers and speakers were meant to handle, so extra care needs to be taken when dialing the pedal in to use the second octave down alone as the featured effect.
- Complex chords benefit from a slightly lighter touch… extremely aggressive strumming of chords can cause the multi-octave effect to be boomy at the beginning as the bass notes tend to be favored in most strumming styles.
The Mooer Pure Octave pedal, like all the Mooer Micro line, is well constructed, toneful, and extremely effective at accomplishing what it was designed to do. With the ability to have five octaves playing simultaneously and polyphonically (-2, -1, 0, +1, +2), notes can be either subtly supported or turn into keyboard-spanning chords depending on how it is blended. Although the pedal produces stellar sound by itself, the addition of external modulation can take it even further into the realm of synth and electric organ sounds for guitarists looking to bust out a few keyboard riffs.