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Electro-Harmonix XO Hum Debugger Hum Eliminator Guitar Effects Pedal

Musical Instruments

Price: $90 to $115 at 3 stores
Searched Electro-Harmonix XO Hum Debugger Hum Eliminator Gur Effects Pedal in Reviews


Electro Harmonix Hum Debugger - perfect pedal, jus featured

Ease Of Use The EHX Hum debugger is a really simple pedal to use. Plug it in, hit the footswitch, select normal mode or strong. Normal mode knocks out 60 cycle hum and hiss for the most part, and the strong gives the pedal a bit more kick. It really is as simple as can be.

The only annoying thing with the Hum Debugger is that it is only powered by a 7.5 volt power supply. EHX state that it's best you only use their power supply with the unit, so as to avoid damaging it.

Sound The Hum debugger does an amazing job of smacking the hum out of your rig. I A/B'ed it against an MXR Smart Gate, and the Hum Debugger is capable of knocking out a fraction more hum than the Smart Gate, without losing a real noticeable amount of sustain.

I found that there are two ways you could use the Hum Debugger, the way recommended in the manual, and the way I discovered. Both work in different ways.

The manual recommends that you place your Hum Debugger in front of your amp, and first in the chain from your guitar. This works great if you are the sort of player who loves vintage type single coils (like in a Strat or Tele) and predominately played with a clean or slightly dirty amp tone. The pedal does a brilliant job of killing off that nasty single coil hum.

This is all well and good, but if you are like me and prefer to crank up the gain a bit more issues with your tone start to emerge.

With the gain cranked right up at 3 o clock on my Blackstar HT-5 the Hum Debugger introduced a nasty electronic-like reverb sound to my tone. I liken it to the effect used for the Darleks in Doctor Who. Very cool for crazy sounds and mucking around, but extremely undesirable when you want your nice pure high gain tone. The strong setting made the effect even more pronounced.

I was starting to think that I made the wrong choice of pedals, and was starting to regret getting my parent?s to hunt this down.

In last ditch attempt to find a positive outcome I hooked up the Hum Debugger in the effects loop, and discovered a far better result. On the normal setting at high gain the hum was for the most part wiped from my sound, and my tone seemed to not be affected at all. The Hum Debugger might have lowered the amp?s volume just a fraction, but my tone was there, and sounded much stronger and clearer in the moments of silence as I played riffs.

There was still the slightest hint of the hum on the normal setting, so I tried switching over to the strong mode, and wiped the last little bit of hum out. This setting did slightly colour my tone, but not in an absolutely horrible way like the pedal did in front of the amp.

I believe that because the Hum Debugger was sitting outside of the pre-amp section, the gain created from here was not getting filtered through the pedal. I think that the gain created by a cranked pre-amp section probably covers the same sort of harmonic territory as 60 cycle hum, and this is why the strange reverb type effect occurs with the pedal in front of the amp.

I decided that the normal setting was fine as what was left of the hum was barely noticeable anyway.

The only down side with using the Hum Debugger in the effects loop is that it does not take care of the hum from your single coils so much. But in reality most players that utilise a predominately high gain tone don?t really use single coils too often. It certainly isn?t really an issue for me. If I?m playing around with single coil tones I?m either using my EMG equipped guitar, or using positions 2 and 4 on my H-S-H axes.

Reliability It is definitely built like a little metal brick. The components are definitely top shelf. The switch has a nice healthy strong click which doesn't sound like it would wear out very easily. The small switch for setting the normal and strong modes seems quite robust too.

Customer Support I haven't dealt with Electro Harmonix.

Liked about it - The pedals amazing ability to knock out hum and hiss
- Robust build quality
- Simplicity of the unit

Didn't like - Ability to only use the supplied power supply

Overall satisfaction:

By LonePhantom
Sep 17, 2009
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