Banshee Talkbox review by Rocktron

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Ease of Use: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.5 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (7 votes)
Rocktron: Banshee Talkbox

Price paid: $ 100

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 8
This pedal provides a very cool talking effect. Basically you use your mouth to form vowel shapes and words and the guitar produces sound instead of your vocal chords. This pedal does a great job of accomplishing Peter Frampton solos as well as "Sweet Emotion" by Aerosmith and "Hair Of The Dog" by Nazareth. The one thing I must say against it is that it is kind of hard to make out words or anything with pedal. My band and I do a cover of "Do You Feel Like We Do" by Framton, and I can say "Do you feel like I do?" and everyone understands it and cheers. Any other phrases in the song such as "I want to thank you" and "That's alright" just sound like gibberish. It's also very hard to say "Sweet Emotion" like in the beginning of the Aerosmith song and have it come out right. These aren't deal breakers at all, just keep in mind that if you're buying this expecting to talk with your audience or anything with it like Framton does, this talk box doesn't have the clarity of upper end ones. However if you're just looking for the normal talk box sound done by simply opening your mouth and closing it like in Living On A Prayer, this is the pedal you want. Also on a side note, this pedal is very distorted. It think this is what contributes to it's lack of clarity, but I also don't know how well it would work if it didn't have as much distortion.

Overall Impression — 10
I am really impressed with this pedal. It makes a talk box very easy to use and approachable to the every day guitarist without breaking the bank or running a complex amp set up. While it is not the absolute best on the market, any other competitors require one and a lot of the times both of those problems. It's also worth mentioning that this thing can double as a practice amp if you have a guitar cab to plug it into. This pedal is an absolute showstopper live because no one really uses talk boxes anymore. (At least in my local gigging circuit). Everytime I use this thing the crowd is stunned and loves it, so it very much so gets the job done. If your looking for a really unique and usable guitar effect and want to take a stab at some of those famous talk box riffs from over the years, you can't go wrong with this pedal.

Reliability & Durability — 8
I've had this pedal for about 2 or so years and haven't had any problems out of it. It's in a metal casing and seems to be built very solidly. This tube will probably need to be replaced at some point, but this is to be expected since it's a rubber tube. You should be able to Pick up a tube that worked at your local hardware store if the original ever got really nasty or cracked or anything.

Ease of Use — 8
The Banshee is a fairly easy to use pedal. It has Output, Tone and Distortion knobs as well as a line out to an external speaker. You simply plug you're guitar into is like any other pedal and run a cable to your amp like any other pedal. When you switch the effect on it cuts the signal to your amp and instead runs noise up the tube and into your mouth where the microphone is. Rocktron did a great job with this pedal by taking the iffy and complicated traditional way of hooking up a talk box and made it very easy. The only hit the Ease of Use takes is that it's a bit of a learning curve to figure out how to effectively position the tube on the mic stand, in your mouth and to the microphone. There are times that you can accidentally twist your head or mouth a certain way and cut the sound out right. This is not really the pedals fault but I do suggest that you practice with this pedal a lot before yo play live.

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