Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Dharma Sound Phaser (1974)



Next up is the elusive and way cool Dharma Sound Phaser. These little puppies were made in the mid 70's out of Kent, UK. There has been much speculation on the net about the history of this company, and as much as I would like to add to the lore, I have decided to keep my assumed facts to myself...

But! What I can tell you is this is one thick, fat, warm juicy sounding phaser. It's in the Phase 90, Maestro PS-1 family, but goes a bit deeper than both of those. I have quite a few olde timey phasers (to be explored in later posts!) and although the typical clean-signal-into-phaser sound is cool, I tend to get the most use out of them when smashing the front end with a fuzz pedal, or vice versa. There is just something about that sound where it seems to take your brain, pull it into a black hole and spit you out into another dimension. And for that tone, the Dharma Sound really excels.

I'm not sure how many of you have seen the movie "Flight of the Navigator", but for some reason the graphic on the front of this pedal reminds me of it? Whether it does that for you or not, trust me, this is really the perfect visual representation of how this pedal sounds:


so..... It's running off of two 9v batteries and a bunch of awesome.
Take a look for yourself:





Thanks for reading!
-ed

1 comment:

  1. I bought one of these new as a teenager in Liverpool, UK in 1975 or '76 from Hessy's, then Liverpool's most famous guitar shop. It would have been inexpensive as I was still at school and had very little money at the time. I used to play it with a ram's head Big Muff, which I bought new for 19 GBP around the same time. A great sounding combination. However, I later sold the phaser because I couldn't afford to keep buying two nine-volt batteries to run it! I also sold the Big Muff for 10 GBP because the internal wires kept coming off the control knobs and I got tired of resoldering them. I replaced the Dharma sound with a four-knob Pearl phaser in the 80s, which I still have and use - a great pedal. I replaced the Big Muff with an MXR Distortion+ which was more restrained but much more reliable than the Big Muff. I later sold the MXR and bought a Boss SD-1 in its place, as the MXR didn't have a mains adapter socket. Happy days.

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