Welcome to the Rainbow Machine, in all its synthetic glory! This one is for experimenters, adventurists and noisemakers. Totally not for purists and/or tone hounds, there are no ‘natural sounds’ that will come from this box. It takes modern DSP and uses it as a tool of future past to create real time pitch shifting using digital oscillators.
EarthQuaker Devices Rainbow Machine Pedal Features
- Pitch: This controls the pitch of the harmony. All the way counterclockwise is a 4th down, all the way clockwise is a 3rd up. The middle position is unison. The pitch can be controlled by an expression pedal as well.
- Exp Jack: This is an expression pedal control jack for the pitch. The Pitch control is defeated when an expression pedal is inserted.
- Primary: This controls the volume of the Primary pitch-shifted signal. Unity gain is at about 2 o’clock, anything above will boost the signal.
- Secondary: This controls the volume of the secondary pitch-shifted signal. The Secondary controls the octave up/down from the primary pitch. At the noon position the Secondary is not present at all. However, turning the knob counterclockwise from noon yields an octave below, whereas turning clockwise yields an octave above and everything in between. Unity gain is at about 2 o’clock, anything above will boost the signal.
- Tracking: This controls the amount of lag time between the direct dry signal and the shifted wet signal. The pitch-shifted signal will track right on the dry signal when this control is all the way clockwise. It will start to lag behind the more it is reduced. This function is especially useful when the 'Magic' is engaged.
- Magic: This adjusts the weirdness of the effect. The end result is a wide variety of wild effects depending on where the other controls are set. The magic control will only work if the magic switch is engaged and the primary and/or secondary are in use. (Technically, it’s a regeneration control that creates aliasing between a mix of the primary and secondary functions feeding back against each other.)
- Tone: All the way clockwise is full signal, turn counterclockwise to soften the highs.
The sound is much different than most modern day pitch shifting devices. It was imagined to be wild and out of control and slightly imperfect while still tracking up and down the guitar neck without glitching out. A cold digital beast made to pretend it has feelings. It will do basic polyphonic harmonies from a 4th down through a 3rd up and every atonal pitch in between.
You may add in an accompanying octave of the harmony by bringing up the Secondary function control. You can take it way beyond and open up your third eye by bringing in the Magic. The Magic is the heart of the Rainbow Machine. In conjunction with the Tracking control, the Magic creates wild pitch take offs and descents, chaos chorusing, shrieks, pixie trails and wealth of other general mayhem inducing noises.
The pitch can be controlled by an external expression pedal for extra fun! The Rainbow Machine can be used on bass, keys, vocals or anything else you can dream up! This device has become a main stay of so many studios and touring musicians! All digital wet signal with an all analog dry signal, true bypass switching and handmade one at a time in the swamps of Akron, Ohio.