What is it?
The Old Blood Noise Endeavors Minim is one of a new breed of reverb/delay units that takes these natural bedfellows out of their comfort zone and introduces some new features that put a fresh twist on electric guitar tone ambience.
Among the tone-tweaking options, you've got modulation to open up the wormhole, then a reverse feature to push your tone right through it.
Performance and verdict
Let's look at the reverb side first. The Reverb control behaves as you would imagine, dialling in the amount of effect you want. Decay sets the length of its decay, while the Modulation knob brings in a harmonic tremolo effect to the decay, as you turn it clockwise the speed of the harmonic tremolo increases as the depth decreases, and vice versa.
If you want to use the Minim's reverb for a more vanilla hall-style sense of space, turn the Modulation knob all the way. You might well, however, find something beautiful en route that will catch your ear, as the faster settings add a lovely shimmer quality to the 'verb.
With your dry sound always present, the Delay knob sets the level of the delay sound versus your dry sound. At two o'clock, your repeats and dry sound should be of equal volume. Thereafter, all travel clockwise on the Delay dial sees repeats gradually drown out the dry signal.
The delay is always modulating. With the Time set at its minimum, the effect is chorus, but as you dial in longer repeats, say around 400ms, that modulation gets deeper, with a more pronounced detune effect at longer delay times.
While you can set the delay for infinite repeats there is no self-oscillation. With Feedback set at its lowest position, you'll get one repeat; simply turn it clock-wise towards infinity.
These effects are impressive in their own right but it is in how they are combined that makes the Minim a quite transformative proposition. The reverse function is very cool. It takes the signal from your guitar and plays it back after a half-second or so, with the Blend control on hand to dial in the mix between the reversed and dry signals.
Even without the delay and reverb engaged, it can make an excellent option for backwards guitar effects. Pretty cool. But then the Speed switch on the rear panel will blow your mind. It introduces a double-speed mode in which the pedal repeats everything you play twice an octave up.
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• EarthQuaker Devices Dispatch Master
As both effects combined share a set of controls, you'd get more sonic variation by using two pedals, but the Dispatch Master's format has other advantages and it's great for cloaking your sound with ambience and space with one footswitch press.
• Eventide Space
If you want a stompbox for reverb and other ambient effects, Space is the most comprehensive around. End of story.
Again, put the magic dust of delay/reverb on that and some very strange textures can be found – you can imagine the possibilities of using this in some multi-tracked guitar parts.
That the Reverse mode has its own independent footswitch with a momentary action, making this a more musical effect and one that should jive well with performance. Hold it down and release it when needed. You can also hook this Reverse mode up to an expression pedal for controlling its blend of wet/dry with your foot.
It won't be to everyone's taste. It's too weird for regular users of delay and reverb. But added together, the Minim is a really fun little unit that makes little secret of its many functions. It won't take long to get to grips with its full creative potential, and having these all-new ambient textures so easily to hand is inspiring.
MusicRadar verdict: If you find the hall/plate/spring reverb trifecta too tame and want something more from your delay, the Old Blood Noise Endeavors Minim might just be the pedal to stake out new frontiers in ambience.
The web says
"The Minim is more something that will complement those existing effects by adding in its altered ambiences, while the reverse side of things offers very playable backwards guitar stylings that can compete with some dedicated pedals that offer that same effect. Put it all together and you’ve got an inspirational pedal for anyone who enjoys a bit of sonic exploration."
Old Blood Noise Endeavors
The Pedal Zone
- ORIGIN: USA
- TYPE: Delay and reverb pedal
- FEATURES: True bypass, 400ms delay time, expression pedal control of Blend
- CONTROLS: Blend, Delay, Time, Feedback, Reverb, Modulation, Decay, Order switch, Speed switch, Reverse footswitch, Bypass footswitch
- CONNECTIONS: Standard input, standard output, EXP
- POWER: 9V DC adaptor, 159mA
- DIMENSIONS: 117 (w) x 92 (d) x 60mm (h)
- CONTACT: Old Blood Noise Endeavors