Posted by
Feb 10, 2020

The Latvian inventors behind Gamechanger Audio don’t like to do things the “normal” way. After releasing a bolt-of-light-driven distortion pedal and an engine-based synth, they are launching at NAMM the first “analog optical spring reverb,” called Light, where an optical sensor is employed to “harvest the timbral and harmonic range of a spring reverb tank.”

The Light’s 6 modes

Those interested in the more technical details can read the description under the videos, but the results brought by this technology are a wider range of tones compared to a regular spring reverb, including some entirely new effects like Optical Reverb Tremolo, Optical Reverb Modulation and Optical Harmonic Shimmer – all part of the range of effects you can get out of the Light.

1,000 units are now ready for pre-order exclusively through Reverb.com, with shipping scheduled by June 1st.

Here are the video demos.

LIGHT PEDAL IS THE WORLD’S FIRST ANALOG OPTICAL SPRING REVERB SYSTEM THAT USES INFRA-RED OPTICAL SENSORS TO HARVEST THE FULL TEMBRAL AND HARMONIC RANGE OF A SPRING REVERB TANK.

IT TAKES A LOT OF ENERGY TO TRANSFER AN AUDIO SIGNAL ACROSS THE LENGTH OF A VIBRATING SPRING. BY THE TIME THE SOURCE AUDIO SIGNAL REACHES THE SPRING TANK’S OUTPUT TRANSDUCER, MOST OF ITS NUANCED HARMONIC CONTENT WILL BE LOST CONVERTED INTO MECHANICAL ENERGY.

THIS IS WHY SPRING REVERBS HAVE SUCH A PARTICULAR SOUND, SINCE WHAT YOU END UP HEARING IS LARGELY THE SPRING’S OWN RESONANT FREQUENCIES. THE LIGHT PEDAL USES EXTREMELY SENSITIVE OPTICAL PAIRS, PLACED AT SPECIFIC REGIONS OF THE SPRING TO DETECT VERY NUANCED MOVEMENTS ON THE SPRING’S SURFACE, AS SOUND-WAVES TRAVEL THROUGH IT.

THIS METHOD OPENS UP A MUCH WIDER RANGE OF FREQUENCIES, HARMONICS, OVERTONES AND TEXTURES THAT ARE OTHERWISE LOST IN THE MECHANICAL REVERBERATION PROCESS. USING OPTICAL SENSORS ALSO OPENS DOORS TO SOME NEW EFFECTS TYPES, SUCH AS OPTICAL REVERB TREMOLO, OPTICAL REVERB MODULATION AND OPTICAL HARMONIC SHIMMER.

THE RESULT IS A WIDE VARIETY OF ANALOG REVERB SOUNDS RANGING FROM CLASSIC TO EXPERIMENTAL TO PURE MAGIC.