It’s perfectly possible that J Rockett decided to put a Uni-Vibe effect and a digital spring reverb in the same pedal just because they thought it would sound good. But isn’t it possible that on some level they really did it for the pun?
Either way, Uni-Verb is a product name – and this hybrid device reckons it has the tones to knock two pedals off your board… which is just as well considering its price without compromise.
The format is exactly the same as J Rockett’s Clockwork Echo: a large case with three footswitches, four small buttons in the middle and two larger ones near the edges, with all the sockets at the top. But this time the steel case is gray, just like an original Shin-ei Uni-Vibe, with a black control panel and the name in that familiar italic script.
There are two important things to note about the way the vibration and reverb effects are arranged: first, each has its own bypass footswitch, so you can use one without the other; and second, there’s a built-in loop between the two – so if you’re also using fuzz or overdrive, you can keep the ambience at the front of your chain and the “verb” at the end.
The third footswitch is the same “chorus/vibrato” switch found on most pedals of this type, allowing you to switch between the full-phase Uni-Vibe effect and something more like a pitch vibrato. Beyond that, the vibration circuit has controls for intensity, speed, output level, and mix (to adjust the wet/dry mix in chorus mode), while the reverb gets level knobs. and maintenance separated.
This unit runs on a standard 9 volt power supply, internally boosted to a decent vintage 24 volt. So is it a good optical vibe? It’s not clear from J Rockett’s press release, but remove the four side screws to peek inside and you’ll soon notice that distinctive arrangement of four LDRs huddled around a bulb like cowboys. boys looking into a campfire. That’s the trick!
The good news is that the Uni-Verb’s vibe half has a generous velocity range and an overall tone that matches the lead signal well. The even better news is that it’s delicious.
In chorus mode with high intensity and mix, it’s as deep and throbbing as you’d ever want, with that particular asymmetry to phase-shift modulation you can hear in Uni-Vibe tracks going all the way back to Hendrix and Robin Troyer. Naturally, adding fuzz brings different results depending on whether it is placed before or after the ambience, but both are valid options and it’s good to have that choice.
Reverb aims for realistic elasticity and hits the bullseye, but with the addition of a substantial pre-delay to enhance clarity. It’s big and bouncy, with a hint of drop, and the dwell control – although it’s theoretically there to let you adjust the length of the decay – seems to have more of an effect on shaping the low density of reverb range.
What we really like about this pedal, however, is how it works as a texture sweetener at relatively tight settings – in chorus or vibrato mode. If you’re looking for a one-way ticket to 1969, the Uni-Verb will serve you well; but if your priority is to give movement and depth to clean chords and arpeggios, you may find this single pedal to be much more modern than it looks.
- THE PRICE £465
- THE DESCRIPTION Digital vibration and reverb pedal, made in the USA
- CONTROLS Reverb level and delay, vibration intensity, speed, output and mix (only for chorus mode); footswitches for reverb bypass, vibrato/chorus mode and vibration bypass; internal potentiometer for ambient tone
- FEATURES Effects loop between vibe and reverb; true bypass, powered only by 9 volt mains
- DIMENSIONS 131 x 123 x 49mm
- CONTACT rockettpedals.com, face.be