Magazine article Guitar Player

Stompbox Fever

Magazine article Guitar Player

Stompbox Fever

Article excerpt

Fans of classic pedals know Maxon as the Japan-only brand of the Nisshin Corporation, from which the first great Ibanez stompboxes evolved in the late '70s and early '80s. Our review samples are newcomers to the 9 Series, and they are entirely new designs with true-bypass switching and 18-volt circuits (for added headroom and reduced noise). A voltage-doubling circuit allows the pedals to run on either a single 9-volt battery or standard center-negative adaptor input. Both pedals eat batteries, so use of an adaptor is recommended.

MAXON CP9PRO+ COMPRESSOR/LIMITER

The CP9Pro+ ($300 retail/$225 street) boasts a circuit patented by the legendary studio-gear manufacturer dbx, and this compression pedal indeed produces a lot more clarity, linearity, and dynamics than most of its ilk. I was able to cop anything from a smooth, springy, chicken-pickin' squash to a ringing indie jangle with little trouble, and by advancing Gain to about 20 with Threshold at -30 and Ratio at 4:1, I could even emulate a spongy, tactile blues sound reminiscent of a small tweed amp pushed hard. Full limiting works smoothly, and, at 1:1, you can use the unit's 30dB of available gain as a clean boost. While the CP9Pro+ is more open and linear than most comps I've tried, it definitely adds a welcome degree of sweetness and thickness to your tone. It also has the lowest operational noise of any comp pedal I can recall. Excellent stuff. Its only drawbacks are some intermittency in switching when the battery is low, and the fact that you need a firm foot for positive engagement at all times. …

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