Lexicon PCM 70
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Lexicon PCM 70

PCM 70, Reverb from Lexicon in the PCM series.

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Andrew Kirkland 02/28/2016

Lexicon PCM 70 : Andrew Kirkland's user review

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Value For Money : Excellent Audience: Advanced Users
The sound quality is the best reverb on the market even by todays standards. I have used a strymon big sky and multiple reverb pedals, and reverb racks ( FX500 yamaha, ALESIS MIDIVERB 2, ALESIS Quadraverb ( original, and 2.0 version with resonaters, and ring mod, sampling) I also use an AXE FX 2 XL PLUS and have reverbs sounds in there too that I combine/ also have presets with no reverbs, and just an amp block/fx loop. The sound quality blows everything out of the water/sounds so nice. I'd suggest putting the mix levels around 30-60% range for best results. I have lately connected my strymon timeline delay in the feedback loop mode ( fx loop on the pedal itself that syncs another pedals modulation sound with the repeats in the delay) I use the quadraverb in a stereo flange mode in the feedback loop of the strymon, then the strymon into the send of my axe fx 2 xl plus, and the lexicon pcm70 in the return. I got some extremely beautiful/crazy sounds better than anything I have ever crafted before from pedals, or just pedals and axe fx/or quadraverb/timeline with axe fx 2. The quadraverb and timeline in my axe fx 2 sound fantastic but have a more lo fi quality like slowdive, the verve, and bands from that era. The lexicon pcm70 takes me directly to Robin Guthrie Cocteau Twins tone/Pink Floyd Tone from the late 80's and 90's. Both are great tool separately, ( i havent tried them together, but I did use the quadraverb in the feedback loop of the timeline) I normally just will probably use the timeline without the feedback loop set up ( unless I am doing layering/trying to get a really specific sound with my modulation/fx) I love the lexicon with clean ambient chorus echoes, delays, and concert hall, tiled room. The fidelity is off the charts and better than what I have heard from the strymon big sky in my opinion ( big sky has some cool sounds/interesting things but the sound quality of the lexicon is amazing, that is why they cost 3000k in 1986 and the circuit board is 4-6 times the size of the strymon board) The combination of axe fx 2, lexicon pcm70,and my strymon timeline make for stellar tones in shoegaze, ambient, jazz land, all the way to alternative, indie, classic rock, shred rock, metal etc. I use all this into a metric halo uln2 via AES out of my axe fx 2 xl plus.

One disclaimer is the menu system is a bit odd compared to other rack units like the alesis quadraverb, midiverb, yamaha fx 500, axe fx 2. I managed to hook the midi out cable from my midi interface ( saffire pro 24) and send it into the midi in on the PCM 70, I then found the sysex files for v 3.0 an v2.0 so I now have all the presets from version 2/3 and still have spaces left to store more registers. You must go to control program 1.7 or 0.7, then on the control program load that, then hit the program LED/button to turn that off, then click in the number 3 so it'd be 1.3 and set your midi to OMNI. With a mac get Sysex Librarian or Sys OX on PC, connect your interface to your computer and have the midi cable set up as I described earlier with the changes on the board made. To get the device ready to receive messages all you should have to do is hit PLAY midi messages in sysex librarian ( I have a mac, haven't done it on PC). For a while I had sat stumped with trying to figure out how to get it to receive messages/the version 2 and 3 programs. My mistake was thinking there was a sysex utility or command like that on the PCM 70 rack itself. VERY IMPORTANT TO SELECT MIDI in the program sysex librarian, it is in the middle of the window and says select device or device ready with a single bar line. Click that when your interface/midi connections are set up and everything is turned on ( rack/interface) Then hit the play button, the screen will then flash on the PCM 70 and you will have all the new presets. I'd suggest getting use to a command set up turning buttons on and off ( program/register) to get to different menus,parameter controls. It can be overwhelming at first, but if you follow these steps you will succeed. I struggled very hard on the internet, because no one mentioned how to get it to receive messages, but it is as simple as making sure the SYSEx application you are using has MIDI selected.

If you are debating on getting a strymon big sky or eventide space, I'd get the PCM70 all day, better fidelity to my ears and it has delays and amazing mod fxand cool resonators, and although it doesnt do shimmer and some odder sounds. you can always use plugins, or other pedals that will do the same job better/or close. I am stoked I have 3 amazing recording configurations with rack setups/pedals. ( plus a million more with guitar choice, tuning, string guage, frequency tuning calibration, axe fx parameters, dAW parameters, the options are endless)