Empress unveils studio-quality Reverb guitar effects pedal with Beer mode

Canadian guitar effects ace Empress is known for its superlative stompboxes - including the Superdelay, Nebulus and MultiDrive - and now it's added a similarly multifaceted reverb pedal to its stellar line-up: the, erm, Reverb.

12 "studio-quality" algorithms are onboard the Reverb, with multiple variations taking the total count up to 24, updateable via an SD card slot.

The usual hall, plate and spring sounds are complemented by ambient settings including modulation, Ghost (a spooky combination of resonant and modulated elements) and Sparkle, which is Empress's take on octave-up shimmers - there's even a Beer mode, consisting of filters, gates and "sounds that don't fit one of the other categories".

Many of the algorithms have infinite hold settings or the ability to tap in delay time via a footswitch, while a cabinet simulator with three variations allows for amp-free playing.

35 presents and two preset modes are onboard - bank or scrolling - for saving sounds, and an analogue signal path keeps players' guitar tone intact.

Connections include stereo inputs and outputs, and Empress's Universal Control Port, which allows users to connect an expression pedal, external tap switch, control voltage, external audio input and MIDI all using a standard 1/4" jack - natty.

There's also a choice of true and buffered bypass, and the pedal runs on 9V power supplies capable of providing 300mA.

All in all, the Empress Reverb looks like a serious contender for a place on our list of the best reverb effects pedals in the world today. It's available now from Empress Effects for $449.

Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as a decade-and-a-half performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.