I’m just starting out with a microfreak. Huge variety of sounds – but no effects.
I have some understanding of synths (own a microKorg XL and Roland Gaia), but I’ve never played guitar, or used an effects box.
I’m expecting to play live – running into a DAW, and using its effects, doesn’t appeal to me.
What I see on YouTube, is a lot of people using the Zoom MultiStomp-70 CDR for desktop setups. It’s reasonably priced, and seems to work nicely. Online comments are that the sound quality isn’t up to much-more-expensive pedals. I think I can handle the user interface OK.
. . . Is there anyone who thinks it’s a bad idea?
It is a good stomp box, but it would depend on if you are willing to go thru screen menus in the heat of the moment (i.e. live performance) or if you would rather just twist knobs in real time, just like on the synth itself.
For me, a more pricey, but fantastic alternative would be Source Audio’s Collider pedal which is a very high quality Delay and Reverb pedal with no menu or screen at all and instead has lots of knobs you can manipulate in real time (Still, you can store up to 8 presets on it).
Similar thing with Universal Audio’s Del Verb pedal…supreme sound quality, but higher price tag.
I don’t think having Chorus is essential, since you can achieve a similar sound by slightly detuning the oscillators on the synth itself. What is cool however, is modulating the delay or reverb (not the original signal), which both the Collider and Del Verb can do, producing a beautiful 3D sound that does not wash away your core synth tone.
A further alternative would be, on BOSS (Roland) pedals, a Delay DD8 and/or a Reverb RV6, which again produce extremely good sounds and involve no menu wading at all.
Nevertheless, the Zoom, just as you say, is a perfectly good sounding stomp box to start with
Hope that helps!!
Thank you for the vote of confidence!
Oddly, it’s available via Amazon, but not in stock at local music stores. I’ll order one shortly.
PS – the microfreak is really rich in sounds. Rather than go through the factory presets (again), I’m just playing, one oscillator at a time. It’s much richer in possibilities than a traditional VA arrangement – the Wavetable samples alone have two oscillator parameters for each sample slot. Like the microKorg XL, but on steroids. And the user interface is much friendlier than the microKorg’s.
The Zoom MS-70CDR is a good partner for the Microfreak but, as @JulioEr says, it can be a bit of a pain to navigate through the menus when you’re at a live performance. I solved this by buying a second one that I set up with another set of effects.
Two points to mention
- There are some effects like SEQ, Z-Organ and MonoSynth that produce very interesting atmospheres.
- You can hack it, there is a firmware available on the internet that allows to load all the effects of many Zoom pedals like MS-50G, MS-60B and G1ON, and this is interesting, you can buy a pre loved MS-50G (cheaper than MS-70CDR) and load the effects of the MS-70CDR on it.
Good luck and have fun with it/them!
Best, J.- //
As an example of what’s possible, of the MS-70CDR, I found this video by Oscillator Sink (who also has several microFreak tutorials):
One more complex tool to learn! I’m getting nostalgic for when I only had a flute and a djembe.