Tone Report Weekly Issue 144 - Page 13

MXR M117 Flanger This big grey box is easily one of my favorite pedals of all time. Ever since I heard John McGeoch weave his twisting spires of sonic sorcery on Siouxsie and the Banshee’s Juju I have been hooked. So much so, that at one point I had two vintage variants and a reissue. The old ones were perceivably warmer and sported the impossible-to-find SAD chips, but they were noticeably noisier and prone to breakdown, so I moved on to the reissue eventually. The reissue possessed a slightly brighter characteristic that bridged the gap between Electric Mistress and M117 to my ears. The M117R can be just as subtle and watery or capable of crazy alien steel drums at the other extreme, but much more reliable than the original. There is also way less volume drop when engaged, making this a fine example of the evolution of a classic circuit. Respect to proto-boutique originators Terry Sherwood and Keith Barr. Also thanks to current Dunlop and MXR designers Bob Cedro and Jeorge Tripps for keeping this one alive. The choice between vintage and reissue on this one is weighing up the pros and cons of reliability—hey, the old ones lasted 40-plus years—subjective sonic difference and of course, cost. All versions of this pedal sound amazing to my ears because it is a great circuit design that has evolved over the years. 13