Cathedral Stereo Reverb review by Electro-Harmonix

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  • Ease of Use: 8
  • Sound: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9 Superb
  • Users' score: 8 (4 votes)
Electro-Harmonix: Cathedral Stereo Reverb

Price paid: C$ 300

Ease of Use — 8
I cannot overstate this: my first immediate impression was awful.

When I started: As a good player with little knowledge of effects I loved the sound but just couldn't tame the beast. It took me a while to really get to know it and be able to transpose what I was looking for on the pedal's 5 knobs.

1 month later: Great! I can easily get a good sound out of any reverb/add a good reverb to any lick!

Now: With my eyes closed, I can get an expectational sound fitting any occasion.

So take your time with it. It's not rocket science, it's tone science!

Sound — 9
First of all this reverb pedal is a tweak beast. It took me a while to be able to really dial in the sounds I wanted but when I was able to I just couldn't get enough. You can put a little subtle backing on your blues solo, make a whole lot of noise shoegaze style, have a solid textured rhythm rock slapback, I even used it with a whole lot of distortion on solos to give a feel that a delay or a chorus can't quite achieve. The quality and versatility are present needless to say.

There are 8 kinds of reverbs, each with its own charm:

  • Grail spring
  • Accu spring
  • Hall
  • Room
  • Plate
  • Reverse
  • Grail Flerb
  • Echo
I could explain what each does but honestly you have to hear to have a good Idea. I'll just say the reverse is my guilty pleasure. I think everyone should have one but these are my feelings talking. Makes a little noise on activation if there is any current build up in the circuit (my explanation is flawed but I'm not sure how to say it in English). So I advise to switch in on/off before staring playing but other than that very transparent, although I'm not sure if it's true-bypass or not seeing that it doesn't let the signal through when unplugged, either way I didn't notice signal colouration at all.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I had the pedal for 5 years. I've turned it on/off countless times and the only thing I have to say is that If I had to hang on to a cliff with a guitar pedal I would choose this one, because I don't believe it will ever fail me. I did some research on the side and I don't have any problems to reports so I can't give it any less than a ten. It has two footswitches: On/off and Tap/infinite (about to be explained). It's a little big, but light, sturdy, easy on the eye and it has stereo (2 inputs/2 outputs) if that's what your into.

Overall Impression — 9
3 key features make me love this pedal:

- Tap tempo
Great for improvising and changes in a song's rhythm or tempo.

- Infinite reverb (by holding tap switch)
Has many uses. Can be used to hold a chord or note in the background while you play over it. A great feature in between songs live to keep the tension of the last note ringing until the next song.

- Storing one presets for each reverb type
Incredibly easy: click and hold to store/click to load. As I said, it is a tweak beast and it's a breeze to keep these tweaks you just tweaked. Cause tweaking isn't everything! You gotsta tweak yer tweaking methods. (I like that word, sorry).

Finally, reverb isn't for everyone, especially elaborate reverb. I just love this pedal but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. Some may think it's overkill, some may think it doesn't fit their need if they need to program thousands of MIDI presets into a controller. And so I give it a 9. It's great! But not essential. And if you wonder, I play every genre, I'm just an amateur of good sounds so if you like good sounds, this pedal may just be the spark we are all looking for! I hope this review helps!

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