Everything begins with your first guitar.
You receive it as a Christmas gift; your older brother moves and leaves the instrument to you; you save enough money to buy it yourself.
It’s a beautiful experience, and an unforgettable memory craved in one’s heart.
Unfortunately, getting your first guitar is a bit risky, because suddenly, you’re getting your first pedal effect too.
This seems unimportant but trust us, is a one-way ticket.
Years pass by, and you end up accumulating dozens, even hundreds of these!
But take it easy, we’re not here to blame you. On the contrary, we understand the importance of pedal effects!
They grant so many possibilities to the world of music…
Now, if you’re a guitarist who likes pedal effects, then you most probably have a delay pedal effect in your gear collection.
Not to mention, you may even have more than one.
So, if you happen to have so many of the same kind, what could you do with them?
Simple, just stack them and play unique melodies.
There are various ways in which you can use more than one delay pedal. You can set them up simultaneously, have them at different tempos, mix digital pedals with analog ones, or stereo with mono. Each combination will lead to a unique result.
If you were expecting to cure your effect-pedal addiction, you’re in the wrong article.
Time to dive into the world of delay pedal effects!
What’s the point of using more than 1 delay pedal?
The main reason why some guitarists combine two or more delay pedals is because of the particular sounds and tonal benefits that they achieve.
Naturally, a guitarist can combine two delay pedals (each for a different function), and obtain interesting results.
The idea is to set the delay pedals in different configurations. As a result, one effect will modify the guitar’s sound, and then, the second delay will alter the effect once again.
This can be done multiple times, depending on the number of pedals the player is using.
Also, consider that some musicians have certain pedal preferences over others. Delay effect addiction is dangerous, be careful!
Now, time to be serious once again. Let’s describe these interesting sound results in a more detailed way.
What kinds of sounds can you achieve by stacking delays?
One of the main sounds achieved with this hybrid is the rhythmic pattern.
This is obtained when the second pedal mirrors the first one but at a different tempo. Of course, this tempo differentiation has to be compatible.
The result is an atmospheric, galloping effect.
The second effect is a mellower sound, obtained when combining a digital delay with an analog one.
The best thing about this effect is that it helps to cover for a second guitar. This warmer sound is also fuller and gives the feeling that there is more than one guitar playing simultaneously.
Stacking delay pedals is great for making an ambient effect. Naturally, this reaction comes when combining a delay pedal and a reverb.
However, it’s possible to achieve the same goal with two delays.
For this, you need to configure one pedal at a short tempo, and another one at a long one. Luckily, the tempo doesn’t need to be as accurate as with the rhythmic pattern effect.
So, you can experiment a bit more with this one, and lean a bit from perfect timing.
To sum it up, you can achieve these three unique sounds:
- Rhythmic pattern
- Warm / mellow / fat sound
- Ambient effect
How to use 2 delay pedals together?
You can use two delay pedals just by stacking them, or using a rack effect (or both, why not?).
Now, you can set up both simultaneously, to create rhythmic sound. In this way, one of the pedals feeds into the other one.
Also, you can set them at different (but compatible) tempos to find the galloping effect we described before.
What’s more, even if the tempo is not alike, and barely compatible, you will find interesting results too.
You may also vary the decay times, the delay repeats, mix analog pedals with digital pedals or combine stereo and mono.
We encourage you to try as many alternatives as you can, to see what interesting results you find.
Here is a great class on the alternatives and how to do it by That Pedal Show:
Can any 2 delay pedals work together?
Any delay pedal can be stacked to play with.
As we have already mentioned, even mixing stereo with mono, or digital with analog will be possible.
There’s no need to buy two of the same kind, brand, or mark.
Is there a limit on how many delay pedals you can use together?
The limit to the number of delay pedals you can have is just the space you have on the floor and the space you have on your effect pedalboard.
If you cannot move without stomping on one of your many pedals, then that means that you have surpassed the limit.
Jokes aside, the recommended number of delay pedals is 3 or 4. You could add more, but it would be too much.
Stack gaining many delay pedals is satisfactory, and it’s a fantastic approach toward self-discovery. You may end up finding new sounds to use in your band, solo project, jam sessions, or just to enjoy yourself.
It’s worth mentioning, though, that although there is a relative limit to how many pedals you can use, there is no limit to how many you can own.
Indeed, effect pedals are beautiful collection items. If you have the money (and the room), you can own as many delay pedals as you want to.
So, what’s your limit? How many will you have?
Hello there, my name is Ramiro and I’ve been playing guitar for almost 20 years. I’m obsessed with everything gear-related and I thought it might be worth sharing it. From guitars, pedals, amps, and synths to studio gear and production tips, I hope you find what I post here useful, and I’ll try my best to keep it entertaining also.