The BOSS PS-6 Harmonist is a pedal that, as the name suggests creates harmonies of what you play. However, on closer inspection, it is so much more.
From the simple four knob set up, you would be forgiven for thinking there wasn’t too much to this pedal. The genius of the pedal, however, is that each knob has multiple functions. While there is an initial setting, there is a second layer of settings that each knob controls which have an affect on the different settings of the pedal.
Not only is it a multi-voice harmonizer, it’s also a pitch shifter, chorus and octave shifter, all wrapped up in the ubiquitous, robust Boss stomp pedal.
When you’re playing a lead line, you can dial in one harmony in the key you are playing (major or minor) making what you play sound like two guitars playing in unison. Or add another two harmonies to create a harmonious ensemble of choral proportions. Eat your heart out Keith Richards.
The PS-6 not only works on single note lead lines, but works wonderfully on chords, creating a faux-organ sound. Playing around with this effect will produce some surprising results and path the way for taking your music in a different direction.
Let’s take a close look at the pot controls. From the left you have the Balance knob, which controls the amount of blend the signal has – either dry chorus or very saturated. It also doubles as the Rise time control for the S-bend (short for Super Bend) mode which sets the time it takes the note to reach the desired pitch.
The Shift control takes care of the shift intervals as well as enabling you to dial in two or three part voicings as part of the Voice Harmony control. The Key pot allows you to chromatically set the key from C to B and also controls the Fall time of the S-bend mode – the opposite setting to the rise time.
And finally the Mode knob, which sets algorithms of minor and Major keys as well as selecting the different effects of Pitch Shifter, Detune, and S-Bend modes.
All in all you have a busy little pedal in a very compact form. Options abound for producing interesting and harmonious sound scapes as well as a few wild and wonderful ones too.
Check out the following video for a taste of what’s on offer in the Boss PS-6 Harmonist.
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