Skip to main content

Electro-Harmonix Pitch Fork+ review

Exquisite harmonies, detuning, octave shifting and more are on the menu with this dual-engined pitch-shifter

  • £199
  • €214
  • $214
EHX Pitch Fork+
(Image: © Future / Phil Barker)

Our Verdict

The Pitch Fork+ might seem like a fun pedal from the outer reaches of electric guitar tone, but its myriad functions make it one very powerful pitch-shifting processor that is practical as it is magic.

Pros

  • Two pitch-shifters in one makes for a very versatile unit.
  • Tracking is very respectable.
  • Plenty of footswitching options.
  • Expression pedal input is big for Whammy fans.
  • Bends pitch up or down three octaves.
  • Great value.

Cons

  • Extreme settings are a little warbly but to be expected.

What is it?

Electro-Harmonix's Pitch Fork+ is a polyphonic pitch-shifter that expands on the original unit with a dual-engined setup that offers a generous set of features that can take this compact pedal from a simple detune or octave effect to ring modulation and other off-piste electric guitar tones.

What makes the Pitch Fork+ such a powerful processor is its dual-engined design. These two identical pitch-shifting processors are independent of each other and can let you go up or down three octaves, with detuning of +/- 99 cents. 

This two-channel approach sees the enclosure having two volume controls (Shift 1, Shift 2), with a Dry control for dialling in how much of the pitch-shifted signal you need.

You have a lot of options here, which is why the ability to save presets is a real lifesaver. While the 10 factory-loaded EHX presets offer a nice guided tour of the pedal's potential, you can save up to 100 on the unit. 

Other controls include a Value (enter/save) dial and eight small push buttons: (Aux, Shift 1, Shift 2, Exp, User, X-Mod, Preset and Latch. The Value dial is a rotary encoder that can be turned in either direction and has a push function for entering into sub-menus and when held down in Preset mode it will save your settings.

EHX Pitch Fork+

(Image credit: Future / Phil Barker)

It will take you some time in fathoming all the features. That is the nature of the beast. But the layout is forgiving, with a bright four-character LED display to let you know which function or preset you are on. The display will have a dot in the lower right corner to tell you when there is a sub-menu to explore. Simply tap on the Value dial and you will enter the sub-menu.

There are two footswitches on the enclosure, one to engage/bypass the effect, the other (User) that be assigned to select presets, toggle between pitch-shifting channels, crossfades and more. Each has its own LED to let you know what's what. You can also hook up a triple footswitch for more options.

As for outputs, there are main and Aux outputs, the latter allowing users to choose various routing options such as stereo pitch-shifting and running wet and dry signals separately.

Performance and verdict

Where to begin with a pedal like this? The presets are a good bet, sure. But taking the features in isolation, the detune function is perhaps the most vanilla frontier to explore. Being able to detune by a couple of cents either way allows for a decent pseudo-chorus effect. Thereafter, well, things can get weird.

Also consider...

Rainbow Machine

(Image credit: Future)

EarthQuaker Devices Rainbow Machine
With slapback, doubling and some excellent detuning and chorus-like effects as well as standard harmonies, this can go from subtle to psychedelically bonkers.

Boss PS-6 Harmonist
A compact choice delivering a tasty range of musical pitch effects to your 'board.

Electro-Harmonix Pitch Fork
You can't save presets on it, but the original is more compact, retails for a little less, and is still an incredibly powerful little unit with expression pedal input and similar frequency range.

Throughout, the tracking remains impressive. Take the Dry signal out of the equation and the octave down effect can give your bassist the excuse they need to take the night off. Alternatively, turn your regular six-string into a baritone electric, or capo it at the 4th fret. All bets are off.

This pitch-shifting anarchy can be used to turn your six-string into 12-string, or an 18-string, while the harmonies can be sweet and honeyed or all anarchic and discordant. If you are really looking to torpedo the idea of regular electric guitar, choose the X-Mod, where ring modulation and frequency modulation can warp things beyond recognition.

You can run the Pitch Fork+ in latching or momentary actions, the latter putting glissando effects on the menu. Hook up an expression pedal and you can turn it into a Whammy-esque unit. At this price, that's a very attractive proposition. 

MusicRadar verdict: The Pitch Fork+ might seem like a fun pedal from the outer reaches of electric guitar tone, but its myriad functions make it one very powerful pitch-shifting processor that is practical as it is magic.

Hands-on demos

Electro-Harmonix

Specifications

  • ORIGIN: USA
  • TYPE: Pitch-shift pedal
  • FEATURES: True bypass, 2x pitch-shift engines with a +/-3 octave range
  • CONTROLS: Dry, Shift 1, Shift 2, Value, 8x buttons (Aux, Shift 1, Shift 2, Exp, User, X-Mod, Preset, Latch), User footswitch, Bypass footswitch
  • CONNECTIONS: Standard input, standard outputs (main, Aux) Ext, Exp
  • POWER: Supplied 9V DC 200mA adaptor – pedal requires 120mA
  • DIMENSIONS: 104 (w) x 119 (d) x 55mm (h)
  • CONTACT: Electro-Harmonix