I find myself in two modes when it comes to gear. Buying fun, creative or tone building pieces of gear. Or buying stuff to tighten things up, which I call utility gear. This could be cables, line selectors, splitters, etc. Stuff that makes what you have perform better, cleaner, easier. This morning, I came across an interesting demo of the ZVex Loop Gate. I’ve never been too keen on gates in the past. I seem to always struggle with the right amount of gate, where it’s too tight, cutting stuff off, or too loose where you hear it chattering. This pedal though, has really gotten me to think about this.
Where this pedal differs than the rest, it’s similar to a true bypass pedal. Basically, the pedal has a loop where you would put your noise pedals or chain of texture pedals with delays, etc. The whole noise gate can be bypassed with the bypass switch or gated with the gate footswitch. Additionally, there is a switchable buffer that is found in the Lo-Fi Loop Junky. The guys at ZVex even took the gate a little further with a ‘chop’ switch. This will hold the gate open (set by the release knob) and will close. This gives an interesting tremolo effect if you have an oscillating signal within the loop.
Here is the video by hiwattbob demonstrating some of the features of the ZVex Loop Gate: