10 Of The Best Chorus Pedals On 2017
People who are in dire need to color the tone of their guitar must have the best chorus pedals. If you are aiming to mimic the glorious shine of the "Come As You Are" of Nirvana or emulate the beautiful tones of psychedelic rock, then these pedals are a must have.
Chorus pedals will let you explore the undiscovered sonic charters of your instrument. In addition, as long as you own a quality unit, you can produce ecstatic rich tone anytime you want. Moreover, it can also provide noticeable interference and thickness in your instrument.
Because of these features, chorus pedals became a favorite accessory of rock ballad bands in the 80s. But don't get us wrong. These pedals are still widely used today, especially by professionals in the scene.
A guitar geek would not miss the chance to grab an excellent model of chorus pedal. Furthermore, with all the perks that it can provide, buying this pedal will never become a wrong investment!
In this article, we listed down ten of the best chorus pedals out there. Out of the dozens of chorus pedals out there, only the units on the following list were able to make the cut. See all of them for yourself.
10 Of The Best Chorus Pedals
One of the best analog pedals on the market today is the MXR M234. It can efficiently compete against the highly acclaimed TC Electronic Chorus. Most of the MXR products are labeled as clean and straightforward.
However, the M234 is a bit different. This is due to the authentic analog design and sophisticated controls that this product has.
We all know the expensiveness of an analog pedal. With the release of the MXR M234, getting an analog chorus pedal is not a dream anymore. Moreover, this particular unit is easy to find the market.
When it comes to performance, the MXR M234 is truly mesmerizing. It can generate a mixture of subtle sounds, with hints of warmness and smoothness.
Despite such lavish, the sounds from this chorus pedal have no artificial flavoring. It is an excellent choice if you are recording or doing some live gigs!
- Sound production is limitless, thanks to its Mix knob and various filters.
- Highly tweakable setup (rate, chorus components, and levels of wetness and dryness).
- Can make full sounds due to its treble and bass controls.
- Works well when complemented by an overdrive or distortion pedal.
- Robust and ergonomic construction.
- LED indicators are too bright.
- The footswitch has an awkward location.
When it comes to function and downright application, the Sea Machine V2 of the EarthQuaker is an excellent option. It can provide you with an umpteen selection of controls.
Moreover, it will also let you choose between analog and digital circuitry as well! Now, it is not something you can see every day!
At first, this particular chorus pedal looks like it is not meant to be mastered by everyone. But once you use it, you will realize that this effects pedal is easier to master compared to its counterparts.
Aside from that, the Sea Machine V2 also has the innovative sound augmentation technology. Such feature will allow you to produce bone-chilling chorus effects up to more aggressive sounds!
- Small footprint.
- Can complement to any setup on your pedalboard.
- Highly extensive set of controls.
- Comes with unique sound modification technology.
- Ideal choice for experimenting guitarists.
- Pricey option.
- Does not have a power supply.
We mentioned earlier that one of the pedals that the legendary Kurt Cobain used is on this list. Well, it is pretty evident that the Electro-Harmonix Small Clone is the guy!
This particular pedal board is a true-bypass and using analog circuitry. Such features alone would not make you wonder anymore why Cobain preferred this chorus pedal.
This chorus pedal can emulate professional tones such as of John Fogerty and J Mascis. Moreover, it is a good choice if you are usually doing live gigs and performances.
Despite such kinds of applications, the setup of the Electro-Harmonix Small Clone is pretty basic. In short, it is a natural choice that allows anyone to use it easily.
Of course, the quality of this chorus pedal is unquestionable already. It has a vast tone range. It comes it more subtle effects compared to its counterparts. You will certainly love the variety of sounds that the Small Clone can generate.
Overall, the Electro-Harmonix Small Clone is something that your pedal board needs.
- Excellent tonal variety.
- True bypass and analog design.
- Comes with AC adapter and 9-volt battery.
- Interface is pretty simple to understand.
- Capable of producing classic chorus sounds.
- The hardware is not as robust as we expect it to be.
- This pedal tends to produce unwanted noises.
Aside from the Boss CE-5, you recommend that you should check out the Boss CH-1 Stereo Super Chorus. This particular guitar pedal represents the identity that the brand Boss always pride: consistency.
Moreover, it has a straightforward design that gives off the feeling of simplicity and power.
You will certainly get hooked to the organic sounding that this pedal can produce. Moreover, the subtle chorus effects that it creates are ideal for various applications.
Of course, nobody can just overlook the sound clarity and distinction that this pedal possesses.
One of the selling points of the Boss CH-1 is its compatibility with other effects pedals. Furthermore, it can work well regardless if you are using a distorted channel or a clean one!
- Works great with acoustic and bass guitars.
- Decent tonal range and versatility.
- Comes with adequate controls for a myriad of applications.
- Straightforward and intuitive design.
- Excellent choice for those who are doing studio recordings.
- Does not come with any power supply.
- Generates noise when you pump up the volume.
Another MXR product that is worth your attention is the MXR M134 Stereo Chorus. It can provide you quality chorus effects that your ears are craving for. Aside from its tonal variety, this particular chorus pedal has a lot of steam to offer.
The MXR M134 Stereo Chorus has various controls which are pretty standard for top-tier chorus pedals. However, this one also possesses a two-band EQ control. It is a feature that you cannot find anywhere quickly!
Because of this feature, you can modify the chorus' tone so that it can complement to the effect and the raw signal.
Meanwhile, the design of the MXR Stereo Chorus is quite larger compared to other MXR product. You can say that it will eat a lot of space on your pedalboard.
However, since the quality of this pedal is great, we know that you would take such compromise.
- Highly tweakable chorus pedal.
- It can produce warm and organic sound.
- Possesses an EQ band control knob.
- Sturdy hardware.
- Tonal versatility is almost limitless.
- Consumes too much space in your pedalboard.
- 18-volt adapter provides minor nuisance.
The Boss is among the most reputable brands in the guitar pedal industry. From overdrive to compressors, this brand has all of them. But it is not just about the name.
In fact, Boss won't be on this list if their chorus pedal fell short to our standards.
One of the brand's opuses is the Boss CE-5 Stereo. This product has been in continuous production for decades already. And until now, it doesn't have any plans to stop.
Many guitarists patronize this product for its quality design and performance. Even Jerry Cantrell and Steve Vai themselves were spotted using this pedal.
Particularly, the chorus effects of the Boss CE-5 Stereo is subtle. Meanwhile, it comes with four effects knobs (high/low cut, rate, effect level, and depth). Of course, you will also love its iconic Boss stompbox design.
The foot switch of this chorus pedal doesn't stick up compared to its rivals. It is very loveable indeed!
- Heavy-duty design (can withstand daily usage).
- Tonal range is vast.
- Value-quality product.
- Comes with stereo outputs if you want to use dual amps.
- Intuitive interface.
- Does not have AC adapter or AV battery.
- Tends to decrease the gain between your amp and guitar by a slight degree.
When it comes to simplicity and effectiveness, the Dunlop M148 MXR Micro Chorus is an excellent choice. The footprint of this product is not that big. But you guarantee that it can give you overwhelming performance!
This slim chorus pedal only offers one control knob. Therefore, you can say that it is not the most versatile option out there. However, for beginners who are just exploring the benefits of effects, this would be a great investment already.
Of course, we have to mention that this one is using analog circuitry. It can produce warm and organic sound for a price that won't rip your pocket. Meanwhile, the design of the M148 MXR Micro Chorus is an old school.
However, its rigidity is something you have to celebrate.
- Very simple design and interface.
- Highly rigid construction.
- Doesn't too much space on your pedalboard.
- Authentic analog circuitry.
- Ideal for beginners.
- Not as tweakable as other chorus pedals.
- Tonal range is quite limited.
One of the most recommended chorus pedals today is the Danelectro D-5 Fab. Nobody can just argue with that. With its simple setup, nobody would ever guess that it can produce warm and natural sounds.
Moreover, it has decent tonal variety, too. And the best of all, this pedal is a lot cheaper compared to it competitors.
The overall interface of the Danelectro D-5 Fab is not something that you can look forward to. Among all the pedals here, this one has the most unusual style. If you include style in your qualifications, then this product might not be ideal for you.
The Danelectro D-5 Fab is using a digital circuitry. It is specifically a mono chorus pedal that can produce decent sound. Its tone range is quite limited, but it is already good if you are just looking for a practice partner for your guitar.
In short, it is a good backup pedal that you can buy anytime of the day.
- Straightforward and intuitive design.
- Tonal variety is good.
- Despite being a digital pedal, it still produces beautiful sound textures.
- Can be pushed to make some intricate sounds as well.
- Best for beginners and amateur guitarists.
- Body is made from plastic.
- Design is not for everybody's taste.
- Not suitable for studio and live applications.
Most of the time, you wouldn't dare associate Fender with effects pedals. We are all well aware that this particular brand is a luminary of the guitar world. However, we don't want to discard their chorus pedal on this list.
After all, the latter has unique qualities that can certainly improve the overall tone quality of your guitar.
The Fender Chorus Pedal is among the most neutral choices that you can have. It can create warm sound without compromising the range of tone that it can accommodate. Meanwhile, its sound production is authentic and organic.
It is unlike those common stompboxes that are full of flavoring, which is utterly despicable.
Most of the glorious wonders that this pedal offers can be heard when you pair it with an acoustic guitar. A clean channel will also do. Despite such application, you can still use the Fender Chorus Pedal in providing heavy riffs to your guitar.
Of course, you can expect that sound clarity will always be there.
Noticeably, only the Fender Chorus Pedal offers these features in its price range. Therefore, it is versatility and value seems to topple all of its competitors.
- Authentic analog pedal (low-noise).
- High-quality hardware; the exteriors are made from metal.
- Powered by either an AC adapter or 9-volt battery.
- Minimal footprint; doesn't consume too much space.
- Versatile applications due to the availability of various controls.
- Tone range is not as good as other premium pedals.
- Not a good choice for amateurs and practicing guitarists.
TC Electronic Corona is the bomb of chorus pedals. We can say that it comes equally with the MXR M234. Just think of the qualities that this pedal could possess for reaching the acne.
Many pros recommend the use of TC Electronic Corona Mini Chorus in live gigs and recording sessions. It can also be an ideal partner for your distortion pedals, considering its versatility.
Moreover, its subtle effect is something you cannot find on any other pedals. With this feature, you can provide a bit of shimmer to your sound without actually disrupting the original tone.
Most of the controls of the Corona Mini can unleash whole new sounds to your instrument. In short, it can create any chorus that comes into your mind. However, we have to tell you that this pedal is using digital circuitry.
If you are a big fan of analog pedals, then this unit is not the one for you.
For beginners, such kind of nuance is hardly noticeable. Unless your ears are already trained to distinguish the sound between two, you won't spot which is which.
Despite this, the quality of Corona Mini is truly one-of-a-kind. You won't regret if you buy this one!
- Comes with four chorus knobs (speed, depth, tone, and FX level).
- Ideal for professional usage.
- Ergonomic interface and highly intuitive setup.
- Sound range is vast and accommodating.
- Comes with TonePrint feature with lets you download custom chorus on the internet.
- Not using an analog design.
- Quickly drains battery.
The Best Chorus Pedals
Best Chorus Pedals Buying Guide
What is the Function of a Chorus Pedal
An amateur guitarist should know the essential functions of a chorus pedal before buying one. Otherwise, the full potential of this device would never be unleashed.
Also, as its name suggest, a chorus pedal aims to emulate the sounds produced by string sections and choirs.
Specifically, it lets your guitar blend with the tone of a myriad of instruments. Bluntly, that is not how a chorus pedal works. However, you can say that such mechanism is the main idea for this effects pedal.
Fortunately, you don't need to become an audio engineer to understand how a chorus pedal works. Moreover, a chorus pedal separates the signal of your guitar into two. The first one is the actual signal (clean and unflavored).
Meanwhile, the other one is colored with pitch augmentations and delay.
When all of these tones blend, it gives birth to whole new sounds. Of course, the distinctness of such sounds is intricate. However, you can guarantee that they have you can use them in almost any applications.
For example, you can use the effects given by the chorus pedal in beefing the tone of your instrument. Moreover, you can use it as a means to alter the overall guitar's voice.
The most familiar scene of a chorus pedal is found in the "Come As You Are" of Nirvana. In the song, you can immediately notice the shine of the riff on the opening part.
As a matter of fact, the very chorus pedal used by Kurt Cobain in the song is among of our recommended products. You can find out the identity of the chorus pedal later.
Considerations in Buying a Chorus Pedal
Unlike other effects pedal, you can never fake out a chorus. Moreover, you can never settle for cheap brands if you are aspiring excellent results.
A chorus pedal should possess commendable components and design for it to perform its intricate function. On the flipside, a cheap and substandard guitar pedal will sound dull and bland.
Overall, a quality chorus pedal should have an innate range that can accommodate various sounds and effects. Regardless how subtle or intense the tone you want to produce, your chorus pedal should be able to handle it.
Of course, you have to consider this aspect if you love to experiment.
Meanwhile, you should never ignore the harmony of your rig and chorus pedal. Specifically, the voicing of the pedal should be in sync with the rig.
If the pedal is giving too much emphasis in low-mid and bass frequencies, the latter could disrupt your entire arrangement. Also, the same thing will happen if your pedal shines too much.
Therefore, it is your responsibility to assess your usual type of setup. After that, you can look up to our recommended chorus pedals and see which ones can cater your needs.
If you this contemplation, you will be able to save a lot of money. Thus, always remember that you are looking for the best value here, not the price.
Analog and Digital Circuitry
When the topic is about effects pedal, the debate between analog versus digital circuits rises automatically. As a general notion, analog pedals will give better sounds compared to its counterpart, regardless of the application.
Although many pros hold such statement as a divine truth, there are still some who opt for digital pedals.
Analog pedals became famous because they are the pioneering models. Seasoned guitarists can immediately identify an analog from a digital just by hearing the sounds they produce. Analog circuits can generate warm sounds while the digital ones are bright.
Of course, some new models of digital effects pedals can emulate the warmth of analog circuits. As a result, the choice between the two will boil down to your preference and experience.
We recommend that you should try different models and see which one has a better reaction to your rig.
For now, here are some of the best options you have for chorus pedals.
A chorus pedal is a must-have if you want to give character to the sonic vibes of your instrument.
This musical accessory can induce subtle to wild effects to your mix. As a result, you can create a whole new universe of sound, regardless of the genre that you are in.
Among the stomp boxes that we featured, we deem that the MXR M234 Analog Chorus is the best chorus pedal. From functionality down to performance, this particular product is killing the charts. It is ideal for practices but at the same time, it also usable for professional applications as well.
However, we still recommend that you should try the rest of the guitar pedals we recommended. You must check which one can accommodate your greed for sound!
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