Best reverb pedal – Buyer’s Guide

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Reverb is another popular guitar effect that gives the guitar sound a sense of ambiance. The effect can emulate different spaces such as halls and cathedrals. In addition, you have your spring, hall, and shimmer tones.

Now the reverb pedals do stay popular among musicians: particularly, post-rock and synth-wave bands rely heavily on reverb pedals.

It might be hard for a lot of people to choose a good quality reverb pedal with so many options available. In this guide, we will review some of the best reverb pedals and point out their strengths and weaknesses

Best reverb pedal — the comparison table

When trying to purchase the reverb pedal that will last long, it helps a lot to get a clear view of how the products stack up against each other. 

So, here’s something that might be useful for you.

You can take a look at the comparison table that lists the basic features of the presented products. You can find more detailed reviews in the article.

Product Material Sound Features Ture Bypass
Electro-Harmonix HOLY GRAIL NANO Metal Spiring, Hall, Flerb +
Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Metal Hall, Spring, Plate, Revs, Echo, Trem, Mod, Dyna, Auto-Inf, Poly +
Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb Metal Grail Spring, Accu Spring, Hall, Room, Plate, Reverse, Grail Flerb, Echo +
TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 Metal Mod, LoFi, Church, Plate, Spring, Hall, Room +
TC Electronic HOF Mini Metal Reverb intensity +
BOSS RV-6 Metal Modulate, Spring, Room, Hall, Delay, Shimmer, Dynamic -
MXR M300 Metal Plate, Spring, Epic, Mod, Room, and Pad +
Zoom MS-70CDR Metal 137 options +
Strymon BigSky Metal Bloom, Swell, Spring, Plate, Hall, Room, Reflections, Nonlinear, Magneto, Shimmer, Chorale, Cloud +
Eventide Space Metal Mix, Decay, Size, Delay, Low, High, Preset, Xnob, Ynob, FxMix, and Contour +
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Best Reverb Pedal — Electro-Harmonix HOLY GRAIL NANO

HOLY GRAIL NANO is one of the best when it comes to balancing the set of features while keeping the clutter and the size of the device minimal.

At this price, all of the major features are here: you have true bypass wthat keep the tone clean, and a set of three reverb modes with a intensity knob. The combination of reverb modes and contol knob allows for producing unique sounding effects that fit any style of playing.

The pedal does all of this and retains minimal looks.The device has a simple and compact casing made of metal, with everything in it’s place.

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Electro-Harmonix HOLY GRAIL NANO — Great Value

Design

The pedal features a metal body with an overall simple aesthetic. On each side of the device, you will find input and output jacks, with the front panel covered by a true bypass switch and sound control toggles.

Features

Even though the reverb pedal does not have a plethora of flashy sound settings, it does well with covering the basics. Here you have a toggle that allows you to switch between three reverb modes: Spiring, Hall, and Flerb. Spring reverb is a recreation of classic tone, while Hall produces a classic, dense sound. For those looking to try something new, there is a Flerb effect. The Flerb effect can be categorized as a “strange” effects. Its sound can be described as a ringing reverb with a quivering tail. What is it for? Flerb effect due to the quivering tail makes the sound deeper and more powerful.

The Reverb Knob is here for controlling the intensity of the reverb effect. The first half of the dial adds a subtle amount of reverb effect, while the other half changes the tone drastically.

Positive
  • Power supply included.
  • Compact size.
  • Realistic reverb effect.
Negatives
  • Longer tail sound with no option to adjust.
  • No depth or rate controls.
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Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 — Swiss-Army Knife

Design

This pedal has a classic metal build with input and output jacks on the sides, with the front housing 4 sound control knobs, an LED that displays the working state, and a true bypass switch.

Features

The device offers an abundance of reverb modes to satisfy the needs of even the pickiest musicians. Here are the modes that you can use:

  • Hall — the common effect of a grand concert hall;
  • Spring — another traditional sound of Fender 6G15 tube spring reverb;
  • Plate the lush and warm sound;
  • Revs emulates a reverse sound when the reverb note fades in backward;
  • Echo the recirculating echo of the Plate reverb;
  • Trem — adds tremolo to the reverb;
  • Mod — modulated reverb that features three modes: chorus, flanger, and a combination of both;
  • Dyna — adds swell, gate, and duck effects to enrich your playing;
  • Auto-Inf — triggers a reverb wash, with each new note, the previously resounding reverb crossfades from the new note;
  • Poly — polyphonic reverb.

In addition, the pedal offers Tail Switch, which lets you choose between natural reverb fadeout or immediate stop.

Recommendations

o Harmonix Oceans 11 is made for long slides. Some owners complain that artifacts appear in the sound. But this is not a drawback, but a feature of this pedal. Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 sounds bright and sometimes super bright. But how varied the sound is with this pedal. Harm on the market, you can find many devices that are capable of making an organ out of a guitar. To achieve this, in the “Poly” mode, set the “Time” controller to maximum, and the “Tone” controller to 7 hours. In addition, the “secret” mode will add the ability to equalize, which will help make the sound unique. The downside of such a huge functionality is the complexity of the setup.

Positive
  • Versatile sound.
  • Sturdy build.
Negatives
  • Digital artifacts in the sound.
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Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb — A True Powerhouse

Design

Another offer from Electro Harmonics features a bulking build but makes up for it in the feature segment. Here you will find 2 true stereo input and output jacks. The front panel has a large selection of sound control knobs.

Features

The major selling point of this particular product is the high-quality cathedral stereo reverb that it produces. To control the effect, you have 5 knobs:

  • Blend — wet/dry control of the effect;
  • Reverb time — adjusts the length of the reverb decay;
  • Damping/Tone — tweaks frequency shaping;
  • Feedback — controls the amount of signal sent from the output of the delay block to the input;
  • Pre-Delay — allows putting a time delay between playing a note and hearing the reverb effect.

And that is not all.

The pedal also offers a lot of reverb modes that you can you to add more diversity to your playing: Grail Spring, Accu Spring, Hall, Room, Plate, Reverse, Grail Flerb, and Echo.

The true bypass feature is also present.

Recommendations

What you really need to know about the Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb is that guitarists aren’t the only ones using the pedal. But also electronic musicians use to make their vibes with it. This device offers such high-quality sound and fine settings. Let’s start with controllers. They allow musicians to go to extremes. For example, the “Blend” control at the maximum position will completely remove the clean sound. The “Reverb Time” controller at its maximum position will make the reverb sound indefinitely. By the way, for the convenience of musicians, the engineers have provided a separate knob for quickly switching the effect time into infinite mode. Another strong point of the Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb is its easy EQ capability. Finally, guitarists can achieve not ringing, but a deep, darker reverb sound. The “Damping / Tone” controller is responsible for the equalization. But what if the musician doesn’t want to tune his pedal for a long time. Just set three controllers at midnight and the Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb will sound lovely. Overall, the Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb is recommended for those musicians who appreciate the atmosphere. This is a very atmospheric pedal.

Positive
  • Versatile sound settings.
  • True bypass.
  • High sound quality.
  • True stereo.
Negatives
  • Some users report digital noise with the bypass on.
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TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 — Authentic Qualiy

Design

It is a rather compact reverb pedal featuring a metal build. The design is regular with a boxy feel to it, where all the switches and knobs are located on the front panel for easy access. On the sides, there are stereo input and output jacks.

Features

The highlight of this product is definitely the MASH technology, which allows the user to control the sound effect by the amount of pressure applied to the footswitch. There are easy-to-use control knobs to adjust the sound to your liking: Decay, Tone, and Level.

Shimmer reverb features a new algorithm that guarantees high quality of sound. on top of that, there are other reverb modes to choose from: Mod, LoFi, Church, Plate, Spring, Hall, Room. Just like all the previous products, Hall of Fame 2 features a true bypass.

Recommendations

The first obvious benefit of TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 is its small form-factor. This pedal is perfect for those guitarists who appreciate free space in the pedalboard. Three tone print slots are also an undeniable advantage. With their help, you can connect TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 and use a special proprietary software to set the tone settings in each slot. And the most important feature of the pedal is the “Mash” option. In practice, built in expression pedal is called by TC Electronic as a “Mash” technology. At the same time, the degree of depression can be controlled. A little light will light up and show you how hard you’re pressing on the switch. Overall TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2 is a universal pedal. But it is recommended for those musicians who appreciate the expression pedal option.

Positive
  • Can be used with both a battery and a power supply.
  • Great reverb quality.
Negatives
  • Power supply not included.
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TC Electronic HOF Mini — Younger Brother

Design

Portability is definitely the name of the game here. The reverb pedal is much smaller than a regular Hall of Fame model, and it features fewer buttons and knobs to fiddle with. It has single input and output jacks on the sides. On the front, there are only a reverb adjusting knob and a true bypass footswitch.

Features

In terms of the supported technology, there’s not much missing. You still can use TonePrint, and a true bypass feature will help you avoid tone discoloration.

As for the reverb tweaking, you only have one knob that controls the intensity of the effect.

Positive
  • Compact size.
  • TonePrint.
  • True bypass.
Negatives
  • No additional sound settings.
  • Subpar sound.
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BOSS RV-6 — Get Your Money’s Worth

Design

Here we have something more of an industrial build. On the sides, you will find dual input and output jacks for the true stereo effect, and 4 sound controlling knobs on the front of the device. The footswitch is large and easy to hit.

Features

To adjust the reverb effect, you have E.Level, Tone, and Time knobs. The fourth knob on the right allows you to choose different reverb modes to get different tones. Here you have: Modulate, Spring, Room, Hall, Delay, Shimmer, Dynamic. The pedal delivers lush and immersive sound.

Recommendations

Boss RV-6 appears to be a real ambient guitar gear. If you need to describe the Boss RV-6 in a nutshell, it is definitely would be an “industry standard reverb“. Nothing extra. No obvious flaws. Standard settings that sound great at midnight position. Expression pedal is present. And it adds to the sounding versatility. But there is a strange feature in the Boss RV-6. There are dual inputs and dual outputs let you run Boss RV-6 from a mono or stereo signal. This connection will work if the signal passes through the pedal without processing. But the reverb itself in the Boss RV-6 only works in mono. This must be understood. Boss RV-6 is recommended for aspiring musicians because there is nothing superfluous in it. In doing so, it gives you the opportunity to experience all the benefits of a good reverb pedal.

Positive
  • Stereo.
  • Battery included.
  • Lots of reverb modes.
  • Compact build.
Negatives
  • No true bypass.

Design

M30 reverb pedal has a rather minimalist build to it: you get neither a ton of audio inputs nor an abundance of sound knobs. Yet the product can boast a sturdy build with easily accessible switches.

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MXR M300 — No Surprises

Features

To cycle through the reverb modes, there’s is a Tone knob on the upper side of the front panel. You can choose between Plate, Spring, Epic, Mod, Room, and Pad. For further adjustment, you can rely on Decay and Blend knobs. A true bypass feature helps to keep the tone clean when you’re not using the pedal.

Effects are switched by pressing the “Tone” controller. LED indication has two modes. If the indicator opposite the effect is lit in green, then the effect that is located to the left of the indicator is on. If the color of the LED indicator is red, then the effect to its right is turned on. When the rest of the effects are familiar to other pedals, then the “Epic” effect is proprietary to MXR. It sounds like a lot of “delay” superimposed on the top of each other with a crisp and long tail. This effect is great for long chords. The “Tone” controller allows for simple equalization. We are especially pleased with the possibility of connecting an external expression pedal. For these purposes, there is a special input on the side cover. The most useless effect is the “Pad” effect, which is basically a “shimmer” effect. The fact is that in the MXR M300 it cannot be adjusted, and at standard settings it sounds harsh. The pedal is not powered with the battery. Only an adapter can be used. With regard to the length of the tails, they can be adjusted. As well as the mode of operation. The MXR M300 allows you to switch between mono and stereo modes. And all these features are included in a small box. This is impressive!

Recommendations

Of all the modes, it is worth highlighting the “Spring” mode. Probably the MXR M300 has the most natural spring reverb, imitating the sound of expensive analog pedals in the most detailed way. This is why the MXR M300 can be seen on the pedalboards of many artists. In general, the pedal can be recommended for those guitarists who play in bands. The DUNLOP MXR M300 is great for both concerts and rehearsals. For rehearsals, in order to make the electric guitar sound less sonorous and more natural, the “Room” mode with the settings of all controllers at 10 o’clock is suitable. For concerts, you can connect an external expression pedal and turn the MXR M300 into an expensive sound device.

Positive
  • True bypass.
  • Decent amount of reverb modes.
Negatives
  • Batteries are not supported.
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Zoom MS-70CDR — a Mixed Bag

Overview

The Zoom MS-70CDR is not just a reverb pedal, but a true multiprocessor with “Chorus”, “Delay” and “Reverb” effects and 80 more effects. Also in the Zoom MS-70CDR there are thirty presets paches ready to use. The musician can create and save 50 original modes and change their settings at his discretion at any time. A maximum of 6 effects can be used at the same time. Another useful feature of the Zoom MS-70CDR is the auto chromatic tuner.

Design

This is the first reverb pedal from our list that has an LCD display. Apart from that, you get 3 sound adjustment knobs and a footswitch on the front panel. On the sides of the device, you can find the usual input and output jacks.

Features

The LCD display allows for convenient switching between the reverb modes and sound settings. The pedal offers a lot of versatility when it comes to the reverb: with 137 options of sound shaping, it will surely suit every style of playing. The pedal has dual inputs and dual outputs, allowing to play in stereo and mono modes. The USB interface will allow to download updates from the Zoom corporate website. The Zoom MS-70CDR is powered by 2 batteries or using an AC adapter, which is purchased separately from the pedal. There is a useful function “Auto Save” for automatic saving of all parameters. The display has LED backlighting, which makes it possible to use the guitar gear in any environment. The “Power Management” function is needed to automatically deactivate the pedal when it is idle for a long time.

Controllers

The control is carried out using three controllers located in the upper part of the front panel under the display, four buttons, striped in a circle with a bypass pedal in the center. The controllers are responsible for adjusting different parameters depending on the selected effect. The “up” and “down” buttons are responsible for the selection of the effect. The “left” and “right” buttons are responsible for selecting a saved preset.

Recommendations

84 effects in one device is an absolute advantage. On the other hand, you need to understand that not all effects sound great. Moreover, the reverb sound turns out to be flat, dull. On the other hand, with the Zoom MS-70CDR, you can forget about the pedalboard. The Zoom MS-70CDR is definitely recommended for experienced musicians as a processor for music production or studio work. The Zoom MS-70CDR is best suited for studio work.

Positive
  • Preset support.
  • Many sound options.
  • Built-in tuner.
Negatives
  • Complex UI.
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Strymon BigSky — A Premium Price

Overview

Strymon BigSky appears to be a very compact pedal with fantastic studio-like quality effects and processing. There are around fourteen height quality reverberation effects. Among them there are exclusive reverberations from “Strymon”. The new generation electro chip is responsible for such a height quality sound and huge variety of options. The main feature of Strymon BigSky is a big bunch of presets. The guitarist could make his own presets with the abelite to change and save them using special memory slots. Basically, Strymon BigSky gives the opportunity to immediately access only three saved presets using the foot switches in the bottom part of the front cover. To access different sound banks there is a special knob labeled “Value”.

Design

Another departure from the traditional form — BigSky has a wider chassis but makes up for it with a selection of features. The front panel house most of them with an LCD display, 8 sound control knobs, and a reverb mode knob.

The input and output ports are found on the top panel of the device.

Features

The pedal offers a ton of options for controlling the reverb effect. There are 8 major sound settings to choose from: Value, Decay, Pre-delay, Mix, Tone, Param 1, Param 2, Mod. When it comes to the reverb modes, you’re offered 12 options: Bloom, Swell, Spring, Plate, Hall, Room, Reflections, Nonlinear, Magneto, Shimmer, Chorale, Cloud. The pedal supports stereo, as well as a true bypass for avoiding tone discoloration.

Connection methods

Strymon BigSky contains dual input and output jacks. It’s allow to play in stereo or mono mode. On the back side there is an expression pedal input, a cabinet emulation switch and MIDI input and output jacks. Such connection methods in conjunction with height quality makes it ideal for studio work. It operates on a 9VDC with 300 Ma power supply that comes with the pedal. No battery support.

Recommendations

The Strymon BigSky is the most popular pedal. It is recommended by many musicians, from the guitarist of the “Late-night show” to the former “Avicii” pianist. Indeed, the sound of Strymon BigSky is amazing. But the usability for guitarists and the price leaves much to be desire. Strymon BigSky is recommended for studio musicians. Optional for guitarists.

Positive
  • Many connection methods.
  • True bypass.
  • Power supply included.
  • Wide selection of sound settings.
Negatives
  • Bulky size.
  • Not too user-friendly.
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Eventide Space — Tech Champion

Design

This is another larger reverb pedal with a lot of features built-in. The pedal houses stereo input and output jacks on the top portion of the pedal. There are also 11 sound setting knobs on the front panel, LEDs displaying the working state, and foot switches.

Features

Space has many reverb effects which the user can tweak using provided knobs: Mix, Decay, Size, Delay, Low, High, Preset, Xnob, Ynob, FxMix, and Contour. On top of that, tone discoloration is non-existent thanks to the true analog bypass feature.

The device includes 100 sound presets and allows for creating new ones. On top of that, the firmware can be updated via the USB port.

Recommendations

The Eventide Space is a very specific pedal. She is able to make a cosmic, futuristic sound out of any sound. This pedal is definitely not suitable for everyone. Eventide Space is excellent. The number of connection methods is impressive. There are inputs and outputs for MIDI, stereo interfaces, external expression pedal, USB and even AUX output. In the center is a huge display that shows the level of each parameter. The pedal has 10 controllers and 1 knob for selecting an effect. But three out of 10 controllers are responsible for equalization. And two more controllers are used depending on the effect. On the one hand, it is convenient for musicians who constantly change the sound. But for most guitarists, these are clearly redundant options. And from here follows the main disadvantage of Eventide Space – the complexity of the setup. Eventide Space is recommended for professional musicians (not necessarily guitarists) who spend a lot of time in the studio or performing live.

Positive
  • Large number of presets and settings.
  • Power supply included.
  • Upgradable software.
Negatives
  • Software can be buggy.
  • Big-sized chassis.
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Conclusion

Here you have it — the best reverb pedals on the market right now. In this price range, you can find minimal yet efficient pedals with good sound quality, and true powerhouses with a ton of settings and rich presets.

It is possibe to find products that offer unique features and lack some of the major ones, so make sure to carefully study the functionality of the chosen device.

Now, let’s talk about how to actually choose the reverb pedal that will work best for you.

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How to Choose the Best Reverb Pedal — Buyer’s Guide

To make it easier to look at strengths and weaknesses of reverb pedals, let’s break down the things you need to focus on:

Price

High price does not always mean good quality — there are great cheaper options out there for sure. Even more, you don’t always need all of the features that expensive pedals offer. Nevertheless, try to avoid the cheapest options — otherwise you might have it break down on you.

Features

That step is pretty straightforward: figure out the stuff that you need and make sure that the pedal you choose has it. Those might be major reverb modes, true bypass, or stereo jacks.

Additional features

Then it’s time for not-so-important stuff. Many of the reverb pedals provide additional sound control or reverb modes that you may find temtping to try, or something that you know you will need. Those might be the ability to make presets, or an LCD display for more nuanced control.

Here you go — we hope that the information will be useful. Good luck shopping!

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FAQ

Electro-Harmonix HOLY GRAIL NANO
Does it take a battery?

The small footprint of the pedal means it does not. It only works with an adapter.

Electro Harmonix Oceans 11
Anyone use this with a bass?

Yes, the pedal is certainly usable with a bass. No issues here.

Electro Harmonix Cathedral Stereo Reverb
Does the cathedral have tap tempo?

You can use the tap/infinite stomp on the left portion of the panel to use the tap tempo. For infinite, just hold it down.

TC Electronic Hall of Fame 2
Will toneprint work with tablets such as amazon fire or samsung galaxy?

The feature works with any Android, iOS, MacOS or Windows device.

TC Electronic HOF Mini
Has anyone else had issues with your computer recognizing the pedal? If so do you know how to fix it?

This only happens if the cable is faulty. Try replacing the cable.

BOSS BOSS RV-6
Does this have dry battery? For air travel is this allowed in checked in or cabin luggage?

Yes, the pedal comes with a battery.

MXR M300
What is the power consumption?

The pedal uses 9 volt power supply at 240 ma draw.

Zoom MS-70CDR
I got and old unit with only 40 effects… return and will order again ! Does the new one has blue color?

You can access more options by updating the firmware. The pedal has a limited space for the effects, so you can change them via USB.

Strymon BigSky
What are the power requirements for BigSky?

You will need a power supply that provides 9VDC (center negative) at a minimum of 300mA.

Eventide Space
I have a classic guitar with piezo pickup. Would i have to purchase a DI or pre-amp for the piezo pickup in addition to the h9 core or beyond space?

If there is no pre-amp built into your built then you will have to buy a separate device.

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