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Post new topic EH C9, Key9, Pedal Reviews?
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Author Topic:  EH C9, Key9, Pedal Reviews?
Dennis Detweiler


From:
Solon, Iowa, US
Post Posted 27 Apr 2017 6:23 am     Reply with quote

I've noticed a few C9 pedals for sale recently on the Forum. I've watched video demo's of the C9 and Key9 and curious if any steel players are using one or both of these pedals effectively? Pro's and Con's? Thanks.
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1976 Birdseye U-12 MSA with Telonics 427 pickup, Revelation Preamp, TC Electronic M-350 Processor, Carvin HT 400 Stereo Rack Head, 15" BW, Hilton Pedal, 1949 Epiphone D-8. And, too much extra gear.
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Richard Sinkler


From:
Oakdale, California
Post Posted 27 Apr 2017 7:24 am     Reply with quote

It's not a C9, but I use a B9 pedal for a few songs. Everyone thinks it sounds great. I believe the only difference is the models of organs used as patches. I find the organs lack rotary sounds. The organ sound I like only has vibrato. It really needs that Leslie sound. Luckily, I have a Tech21 Roto Choir I'm going to add that to the mix and see what it does. Also, when picking, some notes are stronger than others. But I'm sure that's a picking issue and not a pedal issue. I'm going to see if a compressor will make things more even. The sounds are good though. It just takes some attention to how you pick.

I also have an Mel9 pedal. Has some good string sounds. I'm working on using the Cello patch to get fiddle sounds for songs like Amarillo By Morning. Again, technique is the issue, but the sound is passable. The brass and saxophone patches are passable too.

As for the Key9, it's interesting. No acoustic piano sounds which I would prefer, but they are difficult to achieve without some sampling. The electric piano sound sounds great in the demos. Problem for me is, my band does Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue. I really, really hate that song. Our lead guitar/keyboard player had to give up gigging. So, if I get this pedal, I will probably have to start doing that song with the pedal. Mad I've managed to convince them that I can't play the piano parts, so we don't actively do the song. Smile I too would like to see some info from someone who uses one.

Forgot to mention that the tracking is good. Latency is low, almost undectectable, and they track pitch bends great, unlike MIDI systems.
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Adam Tracksler


From:
Maine, USA
Post Posted 27 Apr 2017 11:49 am     Reply with quote

I have the Key9 and love it. Honestly, you haven't lived until you've played steel drums on the pedal steel. I'm considering adding a B9 (and most likely a leslie sim)

I like most of the sounds through the pedal steel and all of them with regular guitar. I have been running the suitcase and 88 at a low wetness to add some padding to the steel and I like it a lot.

I think the key to any of these pedals is you have to like the things they are trying to emulate and then you have to play a little like how that instrument plays. Playing huge full swing chords with the marimba patch sounds stupid, but playing double stops is really cool, and the pedals add a whole other dimension.

With most patches, you need to play cleanly and with a consistent attack.
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Tim Russell


From:
Pennsylvania, USA
Post Posted 27 Apr 2017 1:54 pm     Reply with quote

Google "Pedal Steel Podcast" -

Bryan Daste, fellow forum member, and awesome steel player, does a good review of the C9 pedal in episode 5 of the podcast.

Bryan, we need more podcast episodes! Mr. Green
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Tom Wolverton


From:
San Diego, CA
Post Posted 27 Apr 2017 5:20 pm     Reply with quote

I had the B9 first. Then tried a C9. I like the C9 better. You can dial out the key click better for the Hammond B3 settings.
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Dennis Detweiler


From:
Solon, Iowa, US
Post Posted 27 Apr 2017 6:43 pm     Reply with quote

The B3 and Fender Rhodes on one pedal would be great. For Country, a good piano pedal would be a plus.
I've listened to the comparison between the B9 vs C9 and think the C9 is a step up. To settle on the purchase of "one" pedal, the c9 might be more useful when working with a band that mixes classic rock and country into the sets?
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1976 Birdseye U-12 MSA with Telonics 427 pickup, Revelation Preamp, TC Electronic M-350 Processor, Carvin HT 400 Stereo Rack Head, 15" BW, Hilton Pedal, 1949 Epiphone D-8. And, too much extra gear.
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ajm


From:
Los Angeles
Post Posted 29 Apr 2017 7:48 am     Reply with quote

These were discussed in a few posts/topics in the recent past.

For the record, I have a C9 that I use with a six string. In truth, I probably would have been happy with either the C9 or the B9.

There are a few tricks to getting the best performance out of it (signal levels, compression, etc.).
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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post Posted 30 Apr 2017 6:22 am     Reply with quote

I am experimenting with the Mel9 at present.
That pedal gives you quite a variety of sounds from full orchestra to cello to clarinet and etc.
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Rick Abbott


From:
Indiana, USA
Post Posted 14 May 2017 4:01 pm     Reply with quote

Who here has decided to use a compressor with any one of these pedals?

The owner's manual mentions a compressor might even out the response, and remove unwanted noises etc from the sounds.

I pick really hard, generally, so these pedals are a bit unfriendly with me so far. I have the Mel9 and B9. I like them both. They are great if I am very gentle. Maybe I just need to pick with less gusto Laughing

I was taught to jump in and grab 'em like I mean it...
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RICK ABBOTT
Sho~Bud D-10 Professional #7962
Gibson Console Grande, Lazy River Wiessenborn
Session 400, Bassman Amp W/Altec 418,
1953 Stromberg-Carlson AU-35
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Tom Wolverton


From:
San Diego, CA
Post Posted 14 May 2017 4:52 pm     Reply with quote

I use a compressor. For me it is a must. A Hotone KOMP mini compressor. Here's my board before I changed over to the C9 pedal:


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Rick Abbott


From:
Indiana, USA
Post Posted 14 May 2017 5:33 pm     Reply with quote

As a follow up question: Do you use it before, or after, the B(C)9?
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RICK ABBOTT
Sho~Bud D-10 Professional #7962
Gibson Console Grande, Lazy River Wiessenborn
Session 400, Bassman Amp W/Altec 418,
1953 Stromberg-Carlson AU-35
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Richard Sinkler


From:
Oakdale, California
Post Posted 14 May 2017 6:26 pm     Reply with quote

Rick Abbott wrote:
As a follow up question: Do you use it before, or after, the B(C)9?


I am using one before the B9. It definitely evens out the picking response. I was having issues with strings picked with my middle finger being lower than the thumb and index finger. That string would not have the same sound as the others. Sounds like it goes an octave higher. The compressor has calmed it down quite a bit.

The other thing I feel is a requirement, is a rotary speaker pedal. The B9 has tremolo adjustment, but an organ really needs the spinning speaker effect. I use a Tech 21 Roto Choir.
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Tom Wolverton


From:
San Diego, CA
Post Posted 14 May 2017 6:31 pm     Reply with quote

Compressor before C9 or B9
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Rick Abbott


From:
Indiana, USA
Post Posted 15 May 2017 5:30 pm     Reply with quote

Thanks, Guys!

I have a Wampler compressor...gonna go hook it up.
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RICK ABBOTT
Sho~Bud D-10 Professional #7962
Gibson Console Grande, Lazy River Wiessenborn
Session 400, Bassman Amp W/Altec 418,
1953 Stromberg-Carlson AU-35
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Dennis Detweiler


From:
Solon, Iowa, US
Post Posted 15 May 2017 6:01 pm     Reply with quote

Stick a window fan in front of your speaker for a Leslie effect. Plus, it will cool your backside at the same time! Cool
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1976 Birdseye U-12 MSA with Telonics 427 pickup, Revelation Preamp, TC Electronic M-350 Processor, Carvin HT 400 Stereo Rack Head, 15" BW, Hilton Pedal, 1949 Epiphone D-8. And, too much extra gear.
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Paul Arntson


From:
Washington, USA
Post Posted 16 May 2017 4:27 pm     Reply with quote

Cool idea, Dennis. One time I was trying out a stratocaster and it had wolf tones. I lowered the pickups to no avail and then realized there was a big ceiling fan about 7 feet above me. Off & wolf tones gone...
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Richard Sinkler


From:
Oakdale, California
Post Posted 17 May 2017 7:28 am     Reply with quote

Dennis Detweiler wrote:
Stick a window fan in front of your speaker for a Leslie effect. Plus, it will cool your backside at the same time! Cool


Not a good solution. A rotary pedal works best, if you don't have a real Leslie. That way you can turn it on and off while playing, and get that "ramp up/down" sound.
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CLICK HERE to visit my website. & Mickey Adams videos.
Some anti-virus programs, like Trend and Norton, try to block my site and say it's malicious. It is not. Our computer experts on the forum have helped me and found nothing to worry about. It is safe to put in the exceptions list. See this post in Computers: http://bb.steelguitarforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=301399
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Bobby Snell


From:
Austin, Texas
Post Posted 20 May 2017 7:46 am     Reply with quote

With B9, Key9, and now the C9, IME it's helpful to have the device as the first thing from the guitar, before the VP.

The boxes are all sensitive to how vigorous the strings are picked, with compression or other magic to emulate the sustain for those organ patches, so the usual VP technique of milking sustain may be counterproductive.

Also, I had experienced the 'whistle' when powering from my board power supply, and use a separate Boss-type 9V.

They're all a little cheezy, but fun!
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Ben Waligoske


From:
Denver, CO
Post Posted 22 May 2017 12:04 pm     Reply with quote

I agree with Bobby, having these types of pitch-tracking pedals as close to the front of your pedal chain as possible (or using a good buffer like a Black Box or etc) helps with their accuracy. I'm not a huge fan of compression with steel but it has its place, and this might be one of them, so I may try that at some point...

Anyways, I have a C9 on my steel board and dig it. I actually tend to use the Mellotron Flutes setting quite a bit, but can also get some pretty convincing Hammond tones out of it when a particular song or part calls for it. I've found that it helps to "think like an organist" when using the pedal, IE, some of the inversions that we normally use on a pedal steel don't sound very natural with a "Hammond" effect on... but if you think about ordering the scale tones of a particular chord the way that a real organist would play them, I think this box gets pretty close (for what it is).

I also own a Hammond A100 and a Leslie 142 and have been around Hammonds for many years, so there's that... but still, nothing beats the audio-physical nature of a real doppler effect on a Leslie cab!
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Chris Johnson


From:
Davie, Florida, USA
Post Posted 23 May 2017 3:04 pm     Reply with quote

100% agree with Bobby.

I have the B9 on my rig. I made a weird whistle when powered by power brick but worked fine with a wall wart 9v.

Fun pedal though. Engineers look for a B3 during sound checks.



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Erv Niehaus


From:
Litchfield, MN, USA
Post Posted 24 May 2017 6:59 am     Reply with quote

Do you use the Keeley compressor with it?
Erv
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Chris Johnson


From:
Davie, Florida, USA
Post Posted 24 May 2017 7:39 am     Reply with quote

I don't. The pedal responds to pick dynamics. The compressor before would hurt that
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Jim Sliff


From:
Lawndale California, USA
Post Posted 4 Jun 2017 9:47 pm     Reply with quote

Most compressors placed before any of the EH organ emulators - or any other dynamically-sensitive effect - will hurt the effectiveness. Others are envelope filters (aka "auto wah"), wahs, most fuzz pedals, and many overdrives, clean boosts and EQ pedals.

Some compressors that are exceptions - if set up properly - are ones like the Xotic SP with a separate attack control. Many of these types allow you to maintain full pick attack and simply use the "sustain" part of the effect.


I use the C9 and it's excellent. The organ sounds are incredibly realistic, down to the Hammond" dirty keys" noise4 (the "click" knob).

But it's not the best pedal steel effect IMO. It sounds great with non bending, single notes on a 6-string guitar, 2 and 3 note chord "stabs" - but doesn't sound right at all with sliding or "bending" notes/chords or complex chords.
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Ron Kassof


From:
Las Vegas, NV, USA
Post Posted 5 Jun 2017 9:26 am     Reply with quote

The E-H Lester K rotary sim pedal has been getting good reviews lately.
http://www.ehx.com/products/lester-k
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David Gertschen


From:
Phoenix, Arizona
Post Posted 6 Jun 2017 9:00 am     Reply with quote

Agree with Jim, any bar movement with the organ simulators sounds like an over-used pitch bend wheel on a synthesizer.

Speaking of which, Electro-Harmonix has brought out the Synth9 pedal. Can't wait to hear somebody do an Emerson, Lake and Palmer tribute on their D10 Very Happy
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qebnkmvjiw
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