I say this quite often but I’m not lazy to repeat myself: when you buy a dedicated pedal for the instrument you’re playing with, the results are way more precise and beautiful. Guitar stompboxes can deliver spectacular sounds with your bass, however, a unit that was built with low-end in mind will be able to retain the qualities of your original signal even better. However, today is the day when I have to make an exception and suggest a pedal to everyone who owns a guitar. Even though it is marketed as a bass fuzz device, it could easily become the best option for those, who own electric guitar as well. Its internal components and voicings make it suitable for both, which means it can find even wider application. It can even turn into your go-to pedal and be by your side regardless of the instrument you’re playing. In this article we’ll discuss the features, sounds and controls of Darkglass Duality. It’s an expensive treat, but its tone is worth every penny. The quality it delivers is unreal and makes a lot of difference, since we’re combining bass and fuzz here. The fact that you can utilize it with your guitar as well justifies the price even more and makes you feel less guilty about your purchase. Let’s cut to the chase and start our journey!
Darkglass Duality will start surprising you as soon as you start researching and go through its properties. It might not be distinctive with the diversity of the features it offers, however, it’s still versatile enough to lure you into its webs. The sonic quality will make you forget everything you ever knew about music and force you to learn everything from the very beginning. What I mean is that its fuzz is so powerful, you’ll have to act like a toddler and take smaller steps towards your goal. To be more specific, Duality is equipped with two different fuzz circuits: the first one features classic vibes with its saw-tooth distortion, while the second one is monstrous and frightening. This means that this puppy offers distinctive and multi-faceted sounds in a single package – competing to become an ultimate fuzz box. The best part here is that you can mix these two and achieve something that no one has ever heard before.
Additionally, this fella utilizes LPF (Low Pass Filter) quite intuitively. With this feature, you have the ability to accentuate the character of your fuzz even more and concentrate it wherever you like. It can be focused on the lower frequencies or distort the hell out of harmonics – it’s all up to your taste, preferences and music. Just as expected from Darkglass, Duality comes in a sturdy, metal chassis, which will last you through quite a bit of abuse. It will proudly withstand any kind of hitting, but I think we should all stop treating our pedals as if they were plastic, insignificant toys. When it comes to powering options, you have to keep in mind that this puppy can’t be utilized with batteries. It employs the current draw of 20mA, which limits it to regulated adapter. It’s a minor inconvenience, but let’s be honest – don’t we all stick to power supplies anyway?
The first thing you’ll notice about control panel is that the encoders are tightly squeezed on the surface. They seem to be too big for the body and are closely pressed against one another. But as you plug in the pedal and start playing, you’ll notice that such layout doesn’t cause any inconvenience and, in fact, happens to be really easy to utilize. We’ll discuss the functionalities of each encoder in a minute and you’ll see vividly what I mean.
Blend is a typical control: it mixes together your original and wet signals, making it possible to bring the qualities of your bass back into the game. Dry signal remains at unity gain, while Fuzz volume is adjustable via Level knob. Duality is a real star of the show here – it features classic saw-tooth fuzz in the counter-clockwise position, and features a higher gain distortion in the clockwise position. Last encoder we have here is Filter, which changes the amount of high frequencies in your signal. With simple modification you can enhance or tone down the presence and add another layer to your sound. I’m sure you know that this fella can be activated or turned off with the footswitch.
If Darkglass Duality didn’t have anything else rather than its sound, it would still be worth every penny. What I mean is that the quality of tone is fantastic here and we’d be happy to empty our pockets even if the chassis was cheap (luckily, it has everything it should own). It basically combines two different stompboxes in a single shell – on the one hand you get classic fuzz that can even yield synth tones; on the other you are drowned in aggressive, powerful and dimensional fuzz waves. When you blend these two together with the help of Duality encoder, you hear these two fighting a beautiful battle. They collide, crash into each other and create a distinctive, yet defined effect. The best part about Duality is that it doesn’t get noisy or muddy at any settings, which is made possible with its Blend knob. It has impeccable tracking abilities and responds to your bass accurately. It will recreate your playing techniques in a unique manner and reflect everything you wanted to say with extreme growl and distortion.
All in all, Darkglass Duality is something you should play with at least once in your lifetime. The experience you’ll gain with this one can’t be compared to anything else. It is saturated with power and dirt that we all adore so much. Its diversity lies in its dual circuitry – such configuration isn’t a mere addition of versatility, it’s what defines the character and worth of this pedal. Duality is an investment that you should think about really carefully, however, I think you won’t have any regrets if you dare to risk and commit to it. Good luck!
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