Review of MangledVerb H9 Signature Series reverb effect by Eventide

Review of MangledVerb H9 Signature Series reverb effect by Eventide

Introduction
Eventide have released MangledVerb reverb plug-in as the newest in its H9 Signature Series.

MangledVerb is available as an AAX/AU/VST plug-in for Mac OS X 10.7+ and Windows 7+ at an MSRP of $79.00 USD from Eventide dealers and its website. A fully-functional 30-day demo version is available; MangledVerb is also available as part of Eventide’s Ensemble Subscription bundle.

For more in-depth information, please visit the dedicated MangledVerb webpage.

Overview
MangledVerb combines reverb and distortion, providing power to create unique spaces full of beauty or drenched in mayhem, with complete control over all the elements. Eventide has repurposed MangledVerb for anyone working ‘in the box’ by following in the footsteps of the first H9 Signature Series plug-in, UltraTap, drawing from some of the most popular and powerful algorithms from its award-winning H9 Harmonizer® Effects Processor stompbox. Similarly, MangledVerb makes a signature effect first popularized in its rack mount Eclipse Harmonizer® Effects Processor available as a namesake new plug-in.

Designed for real-time manipulation, MangledVerb features The Ribbon, an innovative control that allows anyone to program two settings for any combination of the controls to transition between them. The programmable HOTSWITCH helps push creativity further still by enabling users to instantly jump to an alternative setting at the push of a button. Other controls include PRE DELAY, reverb DECAY time and enclosure SIZE, OVERDRIVE, and pre- distortion (post-reverb) equalization, as well as a proprietary WOBBLE parameter. This combination of controls is intended to make MangledVerb as close as possible to the experience of tweaking real hardware.

In-depth Review
I was delighted when I heard about the release of MangledVerb, it follows hot on the heels of the recently released Ultratap.

MangledVerb

The GUI has a very similar look and feel to Ultratap, so if you’ve used that effect you’ll instantly feel at home.

MangledVerb is a superb sounding reverb effect which is easy to use and get to grips with. It comes complete with over 180 presets from acclaimed artists including Christian Cassan, Richard Devine, and Vernon Reid which give an indication of what this effect can do.

It can produce a huge range of reverb effects from subtle ambience, huge ambience, large spaces, distortions, metallic sounding, subtle movement to more swirling effects. Using the ribbon to change various parameters emulates hardware and offers great flexibility and usability.

I’ve really enjoyed using MangledVerb and have created a demo album which is embedded at the top of the post. I’ve created this in Sensomusic Usine Hollyhock 3 using a variety of samplers and MangledVerb as the only effect. I’ve subsequently mastered it in MuLab 7 using Elevate and Stage.

MangledVerb has a clear, well defined interface although it isn’t resizable. The control knobs are large and allow easy adjustment of the controls to shape your sound as desired. There are 2 additional controls which give you further control over your sound. The ribbon allows you to program 2 settings for any controls and morph to any sound between the two. Hotswitch is programmable to instantly change to an alternate sound. This hardware emulation is an excellent feature that MangledVerb handles seamlessly.

The input level is on the left hand side with a meter above and the output level is on the right hand side also with a meter above.

The signal flow is essentially input -> pre-delay -> reverb -> EQ -> distortion -> out.

The controls are pretty self explanatory.

Mix is the dry/wet setting. This control has a non-linear taper which puts most of the knob travel in the most usable range.

Decay is the length of reverb decay scaled from 1 – 100. Higher values give a traditional reverb tail whereas lower values can result in reverse reverb with more build up.

Size determines the size of the reverb. Low settings (<15)enable use as a distortion effect.

Pre-delay is the amount of delay before the reverb section.

Lows / Highs are controls to boost/cut the low or high frequencies before distortion.

Softclip is a dual control with the first half of travel determining the softclip gain level from 1 – 100. When you pass 100 the distortion changes to overdrive and the second half of travel controls distortion gain from 1 -100.

Level – controls the output level of the distortion section from -18dB to +6dB. It is used to compensate for changes in level when using softclip or overdrive.

Wobble controls depth and rate of reverb modulation. Increasing the value can create some interesting detuning effects.

Freq sets the centre frequency (300Hz – 2kHz) for the mid-range EQ before the distortion section.

Mids boosts or cuts mid-range frequencies before the distortion section.

Tempo sync has 3 settings. When off, the tap button adjusts the pre-delay. You can also choose sync to sync to your host DAW tempo or manual to set times as required.

The Ribbon is an innovative feature designed to emulate hardware. You can program left and right ranges and morph between them with the ribbon which looks like an electric arc.

ultratap

It’s as simple as clicking on the white dot in the arc which shows the position of the knob dial in the range of travel and dragging it to the left hand side of the ribbon. You then click the blue dot on the opposite side of the arc and drag it to where you want the right side of the ribbon to represent. You can then adjust the range of ribbon settings by moving the dots or right click to delete them.

Active turns the effect on and off.

Hotswitch allows you to adjust settings so that you can switch between effects. It’s easy to set up, long-press to enter programming mode, make the required changes and then long-press to exit programming mode. When you press the hotswitch button you toggle between the two settings.

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