The Soft Focus patch on the Yamaha FX500 was widely used in the ‘90s by early shoegaze bands, most notably Slowdive on Souvlaki. With its roots in that patch, the Catalinbread Soft Focus is intended to be an instant shoegaze button, while addressing the most glaring issues of the original unit: no mix control, a sub-par preamp, and a ghastly tone-sucking bypass signal. At its heart, the Soft Focus is a heavily modified plate reverb with adjustable time, which is subsequently split into three paths. One path contains a multi-voiced chorus modulator, another features a well-appointed octave-up mixed in with the reverb, and the third path leaves the reverb untouched. The Mod knob controls the rate of the chorus on path one, and the Symphony knob controls the level of the octave on path two. All controls are “coupled” to the tone of the reverb to give users an expansive playing field of sounds to discover and fine tune. Our Soft Focus is not an exact recreation but was exhaustively
compared with our own FX500; the difference is that a fairly generic fixed-time digital delay is present on the Soft Focus patch. We found that leaving this feature intact ate into the circuit’s memory just a little too much for such little payoff, so we leave that addition to you and your favorite delay.
- SYMPH(SYMPHONY): This knob mixes in a slight octave effect on the wet reverb signal. While subtle, this shifts the mood and character quite a bit. This is also tied to some frequencies in the reverb for more harmonic content.
- MIX: This a wet/dry blend. Turn all the up for 100% wet and all the way down for 100% dry.
- MOD: This parameter controls the rate of the multi-voiced chorus and changes some of the frequencies in the reverb oscillation.
- VERB: This controls the decay time for the reverb.
- VOL: Adds a bit of gain to the dry signal pre effect; can be used when bypassed in buffer/trails mode as a clean boost.
- * For full quintessential shoegaze sounds, max all the knobs and adjust the mix to taste. However, every knob is musically interactive with one another for a truly versatile palette usable in a wide variety of styles.
Pedal Chain Placement
- In short: Put the Soft Focus with your other reverbs, which typically come after your delays.
- There are no hard and fast rules with pedal order, because whatever sounds good IS good.
A GOOD STARTING POINT IS:
- 1. OTHER: Your compressors, filters, synth emulators, pitch shifters and other things like this go here.
- 2. DIRT: This is your fuzz, distortion, overdrive, etc section. For headroom’s sake, you might want to place pedals that run at higher voltages near the end of this section. Order within this category is not crucial and up to your judgement.
- 3. MODULATION: This is where your choruses, flangers, vibratos, tremolos, etc go. Modulation pedals notoriously accept very hot signals with ease, including effects loop outputs, so running them after dirt just makes sense. Order within this category is completely subjective, so try different stuff until you dig it.
- 4. SPATIAL: Spatial pedals include delay and reverb. This is where the Soft Focus could go. Typically, delay comes before reverb because natural reverb occurs after the sound is produced or mechanically within amps, which is typically the last stop for your signal before it hits your ears.
- What about reverbs that have modulation like the Soft Focus? We would still put it in category 4, but feel free to experiment until you get the sound you like.
Shipping & ReturnsFree Shipping
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As a security precaution, orders over $200.00 will only ship to the address your credit card company has on file for you.
*Korg and Mesa/Boogie products are only available for shipment within the USA. Returns
We want you to be completely happy with your purchase, so we offer a 48 hour approval period on most purchases (see exclusions below). The 48 hour approval period begins when your purchased item is delivered to your door. If after 48 hours you’re not happy with the item, just contact us via phone, email or live chat on our website to arrange for a return authorization (RA#) and return shipping instructions. Any package sent back without prior authorization will be refused.
Returns must be shipped back to us within two days of the RA being issued. Items must come back to us undamaged and in the same condition they were shipped out. All manuals, paperwork, cables, tremolo arms, wrenches, etc… must be included or full credit will not be issued. Any items not conforming to this policy will be subject (at our discretion) to a restocking fee of 20% of the purchase price.
Refunds will be issued minus all related shipping expenses, if free shipping was initially given, the cost we incurred to get the item to you will be deducted from your refund. A 10% restock fee will also be deducted from your refund. Restock fees will be waived for full value exchanges.
Here are exceptions to our return policy.
- Custom orders of any kind are non returnable and non refundable. We often charge a deposit before we will place a custom or special order. All special order deposits are NON REFUNDABLE, no exceptions.
- Microphones, Harmonicas, In-Ear Systems and any other items that come into contact with your mouth or ears.
- Items labeled as BLOWOUT, are non-returnable. These are often being sold below cost and are considered “all sales final”.
- Software (this may also include hardware that includes software), unless still in shrink wrap with barcode affixed.
- Guitar strings, blank media, and other disposable merchandise.
- Guitar or bass pickups that have been installed or used in any way.
- Any item advertised as “USED” is non returnable.
*Payments for music lessons are non refundable, no exceptions.
View our detailed Return Policy here. Early Order Cancellation
All deposits are non refundable. Lots of our products are special orders and in many cases your order has to be built for you at the factory. This is what makes a lot of our products special. Once your order is started, it's being put together just for you. For this reason we ask that you don't cancel your order after you place it with us. If for some reason you absolutely have to cancel your order with us, we will assess you a 25% cancellation charge. This amount is equal to 25% of your total order amount. Ask us before you place your order to see if what you're purchasing is considered a special order. Damaged Merchandise
Do not accept your shipment if the package shows any signs of external damage. After the item is returned to us we will ship you a replacement. If you receive incorrect or defective merchandise, please call 781-335-0700 within 5 days for a return authorization number.