Take all the tape tone and character of the 60’s and 70’s and pack it into the size of a Phase 90. What do you have? One of the best delays on the market: the Echoplex Delay from Dunlop.

Tone:

The Echoplex is a gorgeous analog delay pedal meant to simulate the iconic tape delay unit of the same name, first made in 1959. The first step in getting that sound right means using an all-analog, and Dunlop/MXR have proven they are the kings of analog delay pedals.

The lush, warm sound of the tape delay can be heard on all settings, and on its fastest setting we get a very tight slapback sound. It’s a warm yet clear delay that perfectly captures the vibe of early surf and rockabilly records. At its longest delay time you’re looking at 750ms, which is pretty impressive for an analog delay – 150ms more than MXR’s Carbon Copy Delay.

What makes the tape delay sound so unique is its warbling, almost distorted character that ebbs and flows with your playing. It’s a dynamic, somewhat unpredictable delay character that simply isn’t available through other methods. Want to hear it in full effect? Crank the delay and sustain knobs nearly all the way to hear those repeats distort and flutter for days.

The quirky circuit allows for self-oscillation like the other analog delays from Dunlop, but it goes a step or two further. Not only can you get infinite repeats that build on each other, unleashing a legendary sonic landscape, but if tweaked just the right way, you can essentially create your own loops or pads to play over top of.

The Age switch allows you to get two tones going, the first being a pristine tape sound and the second allowing for your repeats to get darker and more distorted as they go on. The pristine repeats are so beautiful and clear that you can actually get some extremely convincing dotted-eighth note delay sounds a la U2’s The Edge, another feature it has above the Carbon Copy lineup. The “Aged” echoes are incredibly unique and wildly colorful, creating its own sonic signature that really stands out.

Features:

You’ve got the essentials when it comes to knobs to tweak. Not much to talk about, but there’s certainly nothing lacking.

What does set it apart are the Age switch and the external tap tempo, both of which increase the flexibility of the unit exponentially. Tap tempos are pretty rare with analog pedals, so having that option on an external button (allowing you to place it anywhere on your board for easy access) is one of the little touches that makes the entire experience better.

Closing Thoughts

If any old analog delay simply doesn’t do it for you, the Echoplex Delay is a class above the rest. It offers a consistent, pristine sound or experimental colors and textures, not to mention all the great features you’ve come to expect from a delay pedal. I highly recommend this pedal if you want a flexible analog/tape sounding delay, or if you’re searching for a new flavor that you may not have encountered before.