When you see the name Fender effects pedal is not the first thing that comes to mind. They are so famous with their guitars and amplifiers that hardly anyone thinks about the accessories they create. But once we are knowledgeable about the units they produce, we cannot help but assume that they are expensive and of amazing quality, right? Not so fast. Even though the latter is definitely the case with all their equipment, the former is wrong. This well-known brand decided to surprise everybody with budget-friendly pedals. The particular model we are going to talk about today is their Stereo Chorus, which is a part of the Competition series.
Being a bit different from its siblings, this stompbox offers everything you would expect from Fender and way more than you would expect from the price. What could be better, ha? If you are scrolling through different models of chorus pedals trying to find your soulmate, give this fella a try and stay with me to find out more information about its features, controls and sound. After all, these three criteria are the key to understanding the capabilities of many musical devices. Let’s get to it and see what we got here!
Sometimes you expect a whole lot from the brand but in reality you are left with nothing. This is definitely not the case with Fender, since everything you thought initially will come true with the help of Stereo Chorus. This bad boy is way smaller than its siblings, which is always a nice thing. Nobody wants a single stompbox to take up a real estate. When it comes to appearance, we have got a hot guy here. It has a blue shell with wide black footswitch and those sweet and beloved Fender logos.
Though this feature might not be that important to most of you, it still pleases the eye, so why not. The build quality of Stereo Chorus is outstanding, hosting the die-cast metal enclosure. This way you are going to utilize this fancy as hell pedal for the years to come. Things get a bit more interesting with connections. Here, we have both mono and stereo outputs. This means that you can route it to two amplifiers simultaneously and blend affected signal with the original.
You will not know how much difference this makes unless you try to perform with it. Stereo Chorus can be powered either with a 9V battery or a power supply with the help of the DC jack. Whichever option you prefer, you have the freedom to choose. And one last thing, this pedal has LED light, which makes sure you know whether your unit is activated or not. Most of them do so. But the cool thing here is that (when employing the Speed) LED flashes according to the rhythm of the LFO. This little addition increases convenience since it makes the settings of the stompbox visible even when your own notes are not audible in the loud mix.
Just when you thought things couldn’t get any better, we move on to the control section. Fender decided to make the process of utilization as enjoyable as possible, so they incorporated user-friendly layout and included only the most essential knobs. This is not a euphemism for saying that it lacks control. It has everything you would require for creating the most beautiful chorus. We shall see below the functionalities of each and every switch.
The control section begins with the Depth knob. This little encoder changes the intensity of the chorus, makes it more prominent and alters the amplitude of its sweeps. Next comes the Speed, which alters the rate of the effect. It can deliver either slow swirls or rhythmic sounds, resembling vibrato. The third control we have here is Mix. This magical knob blends together with your affected and original signals, allowing the nature of your guitar to come through. Lastly, we have a large footswitch situated on the lower part of the stompbox, which turns it on or off. Judging by everything I have just mentioned, it is no mystery that Stereo Chorus is extremely easy to tweak and configure.
Fender Chorus Sound
The sound is where things go up in high gear. Would a leading brand in guitars and amplifiers create the unit with crappy tone? I do not think so. The guys in Fender have enough experience in sonic spaces to assemble a badass analog circuit, that also sounds analog. Stereo Chorus is rich and deep with various dimensions layered on top of each other. Its overall character is warm but hardly subtle. Of course you can achieve laid-back sounds, but the range of both depth and speed is wide enough to cover many realms and territories. Stereo Chorus performs wonderfully in stereo mode, creating a very thick and organic chorus.
This pedal does not overpower your original signal, rather, it lets it stand out in the mix. Though there is nothing special about this unit, there is something that draws you to it from the very first note. You can easily achieve the tonal outcome of rotary speakers, which is a very luxurious thing to taste. On the whole, regardless of your style, taste or genre, Stereo Chorus will sound fantastic, since it knows how to treat every single riff you create and the note you emit.
To conclude everything said above, I can only say that Fender Stereo Chorus does exactly what it promises to. You will not have any false expectations with this one, since all your desires will come to reality. Those who expect something ethereal and completely different should look elsewhere. Stereo Chorus is for those, who want a simple, wonderful chorus that does not take ages to create. Its easy control layout will mesmerize even the pickiest players and force them to fall in love with the capabilities of the unit. That’s it. Explore its capabilities further and if you get even more convinced, then there is no need to contemplate. Good luck!
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