Modifying the Electro Harmonix Stereo Memory Man w/ Hazarai delay pedal for external tap clock. A follow-up to this post.
Two years on from blogging Rechner7's project, I've finally modded my SMMH, a delay which features heavily in my recordings and live sets. I'd never found the original tap tempo function a hindrance to getting interesting echo, but was inspired to give the mod another look after seeing Mr Biggs' video of his project. I'm glad I did, as the additional inputs have yielded a few surprises.
Here's how it sounds:
I kept my mod simple, adding one external clock jack, a three-position switch (on + HP filter, off, on without filter) and a softer response tap button. The internal changes consist of Ken Stone's Gate to Trigger and Doepfer's Gate to S-Trigger circuits. Here's my perf-board layout. As r7 originally warned, the most difficult part of the operation was removing the PCB from the enclosure. After a few frustrating attempts, I gave up, masked the PCB with paper and drilled my holes with the board in place.
So, was it worth it? Yes, but not for the reasons I originally assumed. While tempo-syncing is nice, I actually prefer the sound of echos which are not perfectly in time. The new momentary switch was a last minute decision and I'm glad I added it. It's less clunky than the original foot-switch and makes tapping easier. That doesn't mean the clock input is redundant - it comes into its own when fed with random gates, for example from a tail-chasing Wogglebug. As you can hear, this is where the real fun starts:
Thanks to Rechner7 and Mr Biggs for answering my questions and for their encouragement. It's a simple project that helps integrate the SMMH with the modular, so highly recommended. As ever, the usual disclaimer applies: modding you pedal will void your warranty and is carried out at your own risk!