Using the Integrated EVP88 Effects

The EVP88 features built-in Equalizer, (Over)Drive, Phaser, Tremolo, and Chorus effects. See these sections for details:

Using the EVP88 Equalizer

The Equalizer allows you to boost or cut the high and low frequency ranges of the EVP88 sound. The Equalizer is positioned after the overdrive circuit in the EVP88 effects chain.

Figure. Equalizer prameters.
  • Treble knob: Controls a conventional filter for the high frequency range. Either shelving- or peak-type filters are utilized—depending on the piano model selected. Optimized frequency ranges are preselected for each model.
  • Bass knob: Controls a conventional filter for the low frequency range. Either shelving- or peak-type filters are utilized—depending on the piano model selected. Optimized frequency ranges are preselected for each model.

    Tip: You can achieve a very direct and aggressive sound, with a more dominant mid-range, by suppressing the treble and bass frequency ranges. If you require more precise equalization, you can insert any of the Logic Studio equalizer plug-ins into the instrument channel strip. You can also use the Tone control of the Drive effect to further contour the harshness of your sound.

Using the EVP88 Drive Effect

Electric pianos sound best when played through tube amplifiers. Tube amplifiers offer a wide range of tones—from the subtle warmth or crunch of guitar amplifiers, to psychedelic, screaming rock distortions. The EVP88 Drive effect simulates the saturation characteristics of a tube amplifier stage. The Drive effect is the first signal processing circuit in the effects chain of the EVP88.

Figure. Drive parameters.
  • Gain knob: Determines the amount of harmonic distortion.
  • Tone knob: Equalizes the sound before it is amplified or distorted by the virtual tube amplifier circuit. You can use low Tone values to set a mellow tonal color. If you find that the sound is too soft, boost the treble portion of your sound with the Equalizer effect. If you prefer harsh distortion characteristics, typical of overdriven transistor stages, use higher Tone parameter values. If the sound becomes too hard, you can suppress the treble portion of your sound with the Equalizer effect Treble control.

Using the EVP88 Phaser Effect

The phaser pedals used by electric guitarists were also popular among electric pianists—especially in the electric jazz, jazz-rock, and pop styles of the 1970s.

The Phaser effect runs the original signal through a series of four filters that enhance particular aspects of the EVP88 frequency spectrum. This filtered signal is slightly phase delayed and is mixed with the original signal, resulting in frequency “notches” in the frequency spectrum. The notches in the phase-delayed signal are moved up and down through the frequency spectrum by an LFO (low frequency oscillator) modulation. This results in the amplitudes of the two signals reaching their highest and lowest points at slightly different times.

Note: Logic Studio offers a far more sophisticated Phaser effect (and other modulation plug-ins), which can be used instead of, or in conjunction with, the EVP88’s Phaser. The parameters found in the EVP88 Phaser have much in common with the best analog phasers of the 1960s and 1970s, including subtle analog-style distortion.

Figure. Phaser parameters.
  • Rate knob: Determines the speed of the phasing effect. When it is set to 0, the Phaser is turned off.
  • Color knob: Sets the amount of the Phaser output signal that is fed back into the Phaser effect input. This has an impact on the tonal color of the phasing effect.
  • Stereophase knob: Determines the relative phase shift between the left and right channels, ranging from 0 the effect is most intense, but not stereophonic. At a value of 180 the effect symmetrically rises in the left channel while falling in the right channel, and vice versa.

Using the EVP88 Tremolo Effect

A periodic modulation of the amplitude (level) of the sound is known as a tremolo. The modulation is controlled via an LFO. The Fender Rhodes suitcase piano features a stereo tremolo, and many other electric pianos have a simple, but quite obtrusive, mono tremolo, which can introduce a strange kind of polyrhythmic feel to performances.

Figure. Tremolo parameters.
  • Rate knob: Sets the speed of the tremolo effect (LFO frequency).
  • Intensity knob: Determines the amount of amplitude modulation. When it is set to 0, the tremolo effect is turned off.
  • Stereophase knob: Determines the relative phase shift between the left and right channels, ranging from 0 changes the level of both channels—in phase. A 180-of-phase modulation, resulting in a stereo tremolo effect that is also known as auto panning. This is similar to manually turning the pan pot from side to side.

    Tip: The original Wurlitzer piano has a mono tremolo with a fixed modulation rate of 5.5 Hz. For an authentic Wurlitzer sound, select a Stereophase value of 0 degrees. For Rhodes sounds, set the Stereophase value to 180 degrees. The settings in-between result in nice, spacey effects—especially at low LFO rates.

Using the EVP88 Chorus Effect

The well-known chorus effect is based on a delay circuit. The delay time is modulated by an LFO. The delayed-effect signal is mixed with the original signal. It is the most popularly used effect on electric piano sounds.

Figure. Chorus parameters.

The single Chorus parameter regulates the intensity (the amount of delay time deviation). The LFO rate is fixed at 0.7 Hz, but it can be altered with the Chorus Rate parameter (see Using the EVP88 Extended Parameters below).

Note: High values may result in the piano sounding detuned.