Price paid: $ 50
Purchased from: Amazon
Ease of Use — 9
The Fender Competition Delay is very simple to use as there are only three knobs: repeat, delay, and mix. Repeat controls how many times the dry signal is repeated, delay determines the gap between the dry signal and the repeat, and the mix know affects how much prominence the effect has on your tone. There is also a stereo input allowing for use in two amps. The manual explained the parts but didn't provide sample settings, which I didn't really mind. If you're the kind of person who likes to turn knobs over ad over to dial in the right one, you'll enjoy using this.
Sound — 8
I am playing B.C. Rich Mockingbird ST and Fender Strat through a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe. It's analog so you get less defined repeats but a really warm sound. It offers up to 300 milliseconds, which, after some experimentation, was less than ideal for me but that doesn't mean it's useless. By keeping both the repeat and delay fairly low you can get some slapback sounds, which is great for country. Turn both up some more to add an echo effect to clean chords for simple rhythm playing and arpeggios. Max everything for some crazy space sounds.
Reliability & Durability — 8
The circuit board is housed in a sturdy die cast similar to an MXR pedal so if you drop it, no worries. The knobs are solid and won't snap off unless you try to make them. My only worry is that the switch could break if stepped on too hard since it's made of plastic. I don't feel any need to bring a backup as long as I don't literally treat this as a stompbox. I can't comment on on how it uses batteries since I pretty much always use a power source. I've only used it for one gig but I had no problems with it.
Overall Impression — 8
I have no prior experience with Fender pedals to I didn't know what to expect, but in my book this is a solid pedal which excels in slapbacks and building on simple rhythm parts. I play classic and modern rock, metal, blues, and I've dabbled in country and jazz, so I think it will work in any song I feel needs a delay effect if used appropriately. It if were lost or stolen, I might consider something new just to see what else is out there. I love this pedal's simplicity and warm tones but the delay time could be better. It's really basic but it does its job well.