The Strymon DECO is an UFO among hundreds of other pedals available on the market. Concretely, what is it? DECO recreates the sound and behavior of 2 vintage "reel-to-reel" tape machines as well as the possibilities linked to their common interaction. DECO reminds us of the forgotten art of manipulating old tape machines from the 50's / 60's by bringing you the vintage tape effects of the early recording studios, right on your pedal board.
So we have a "dual" pedal with a Tape Overdrive on one side that sweetens your sound with soft, warm and naturally musical compression and saturation. This can simply color your sound or serve as a drive just like a classic overdrive would.
On the other side, a tape machine called "Doubletracker" which makes it possible to obtain a whole range of tape modulations (Flanger, Chorus...) and a tape delay of the Slapback or Tape Echo type. The Doubletracker offers the power to shift your sound in time and achieve fabulous effects.
For this version 2, Strymon has remained faithful to the original box by adding an additional control. Beautiful aluminum chassis, ultra light, PCB at the top, the manufacturing quality is there, it's Strymon, we are at the top of the basket. With its ultra-quiet, high-performance 24-bit 96 kHz A/D and D/A converters and a frequency response of 20 Hz to 20 kHz, the DECO is as at home on a studio console as in front of a tube amp. . It is made for duration.
The new functions of version 2:
More options - A new Tape Cassette mode has been added which uses an automatic level control (ALC) process found on many high end tape machines. This gives a more compressed and fat sound. Also, a Tone button has been added to adjust the tone of the drive slice.
MIDI - USB - Instrument / Line Level - The addition of MIDI protocol and a USB-C port gives you the ability to control every parameter on the pedal and recall them via 300 presets. There are two input modes to choose from, each optimized for a specific type of setup (bass guitars with active pickups, synthesizers, effects loops, vocals and more…)
Hardware - A new premium JFET analog input stage ensures superb responsiveness to your playing, and lets you select mono or stereo input at the push of a rear panel button. You can now control the a DECO with an expression pedal or a MultiSwitch Plus. An all-new ARM processor delivers more processing power for every nuance of sound, with less power drained from your pedalboard.
- The buttons: Saturation to adjust the drive, Volume for the output level, Tone to add more or less treble. Time lets you adjust the delay time, Wobble adds a random modulation, Blend lets you mix the two slices together. Blend type adjusts the phase of the effect and its distribution within the stereo image.
- Many secondary functions are available.
Tape (analog) overdrive has a very wide operating range. We can obtain a whole range of nuances ranging from ultra-transparent clean boost to thrust overdrive. Indeed, the overdrive delivered by the DECO is extremely malleable. Set to 9:00, the Saturation knob adds just a slight harmonic content to your sound. Ideal for obtaining a denser, fatter, richer clean, but without distorting it because the effect is stacked like a layer on your original sound. By pushing the gain, you get a smoother overdrive, with a slight compression that increases as you push the amount of saturation. The grit is smooth, rich in overtones and the pedal clean to perfection when adjusting the amount of gain via the guitar's volume knob.
The double tracker part takes up the basics of El Capistan with different possibilities. We find this magnificent algorithm allowing this slight "detune" which has now become one of the sound signatures of the brand. It's simple, once the Doubletracker is engaged, everything is wider, more spatialized, with a specific color typical of tape machines. The Chorus mode is absolutely beautiful and unique. The Lag Time knob is incredibly effective and really allows you to magnify everything that passes through the pedal.
All this works superbly with a guitar, but it would be extremely simplistic to think that DECO is a pedal only reserved for guitarists. Indeed, it could be defined as a "studio" pedal. The only thing to do is let your creativity speak. You can plug in what you want and process for example, a guitar, a voice, a keyboard, loops, use the pedal as an insert on a PropTools and virtually integrate it anywhere in your sound chain to give it the characteristic sounds of reel-to-reel machines.
You want to give a '50-'60s touch to your songs? Bring harmonic content and spacialization to your sound? Treat your audio chain in a subtle or more unstructured way? Whatever your register, electro, pop, rock etc... The Deco will add the "Strymon touch" and an inimitable sound signature to your creations. Matched to a Strymon Flint, your creativity will be almost limitless!
Inputs, outputs and footswitches:
● Ultra low noise, high impedance Class A stereo JFET TRS input.
● Independent low impedance TS stereo outputs.
● Input for expression pedal and MiniSitch, MultiSwitch Plus or TRS MIDI.
● USB port for controlling via MIDI from a computer or for performing firmware updates.
Dedicated footswitches for each effect/
● Premium JFET analog input stage
24-bit 96 kHz A/D and D/A converters with very low noise and high audio quality
520MHz Superscalar ARM processor
● 32-bit floating point processing
● Frequency response from 20 Hz to 20 kHz
● Audio input impedance: 1 M Ohm
Audio output impedance: 100 ohms
● Strong and lightweight sky blue anodized aluminum chassis
● 9 V DC power supply included
Power requirements: 9 volts DC maximum, center negative, with a minimum current of 300 mA.
● Designed and manufactured in the USA