The late 1970s and early '80s produced some legendary flangers. Those effects utilized bucket brigade device (BBD) chips that allowed them to produce super wide delay sweeps from 15ms all the way up to 0.4ms (about the limit of perception by the human ear). Unfortunately, by the mid '80s those BBDs were out of production and since then most analog flangers have been limited to minimum delay times of well-above 1ms. Some perfectly fine flangers have been made with those limitations, but truly versatile flanging requires more.
Another key in flanging is that the ideal modulation sweep character changes as the speed setting of the flanger is adjusted - very slow and wide settings sound best with a hybrid triangular/sinusoidal sweep waveform, whereas fast and narrow settings sound best with a triangular shaped oscillation. No analog flangers to date fully account for this, most get by simply because they have limited speed and depth settings or are optimized for a certain range.
The AXiom Flange-Chorus FC-1 was designed to address these issues by dissecting the greatest flangers of all time and matching or bettering their critical characteristics. It can produce delay times from 0.35ms to 20ms (meaning it can produce a flange effect so rich it seems to be coming down from the stratosphere or authentic chorus depending on how you set it). The DWELL control allows you to adjust the oscillation character from triangular to an optimized hybrid wave with a gently extended dwell time at the bottom of the sweep; the MIX control lets you adjust the precise blend of dry to effected signal so you can go from the subtlest effect to dramatic flange or chorus; the REGEN control allows you to dial in the 'swoosh' from chorus to jet-plane flanger levels; the RATE control lets you adjust the speed from 0.07 seconds to almost a full minute (59 secs); the MANUAL control adjusts the sweep center (delay time) of the modulation; the DEPTH control determines the range of the sweep; and it features a SENSitivity control that senses your picking dynamics and applies flanging/chorus based on how aggressively you strike the strings (with this control fully CW the FC-1 operates as a traditional flanger).
Simply put, the AXiom Flange-Chorus FC-1 was designed to be the most powerful 100% analog flanger ever made. You don't have to spend a fortune on a vintage flanger to get the performance standards of the analog glory days, you don't have to go digital to get the advanced control you want, and you don't have to buy another pedal to get a first-class chorus along with it.
Question: I don't get it. Is the FC-1 a flanger or a chorus?
Answer: It's both. Flangers and choruses are actually very similar in design. Both are based on modulation of a delayed signal mixed with the dry signal. The main differences are that flangers typically sweep across a wide delay range whereas choruses tend to sweep through a much narrower range and flangers have internal resonance feedback whereas choruses do not. The AXiom Flange-Chorus FC-1 gives you precise control over all of these parameters so it can be set for truly authentic chorusing or flanging as you wish.
- 100% analog circuitry
- True bypass
- A unique DWELL control that lets you adjust from traditional triangular wave modulation to an optimized hybrid sinusoidal waveform.
- A SENSitivity control that applies flanging/chorus based on how aggressively you pick. With SENS fully CCW there will be no flanging/chorus effect at all. With SENS fully CW the FC-1 functions like a traditional flanger. Anywhere in between dials in how strongly the effect is applied in response to your picking.
- A REGEN control that dials in the internal resonance feedback from chorus to jet-plane flange levels.
- A MIX control that lets you go from dry to subtle to maximum flange/chorus.
- Additive or subtractive (ie. odd/even) flanging
- BBD delay times from 0.35ms to 20ms
- Oscillation speed adjustable from 0.07 to 59 seconds