Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Pedal (Digital Delay)

96
GEARANK

96 out of 100. Incorporating 500+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$299
Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Pedal

Meta Analysis Overview

Our rating of 96/100 is based on analysis of 500+ sources comprised of online reviews and discussions. Under the Pros and Cons headings below you'll find a condensed analysis of what those owners and users have been saying. Feel free to ask questions or add your thoughts in the comments section.

The Strymon El Capistan brings classic tape delay and echo sounds into a modern digital format.

Emulating every stage of the signal as it passes through an analog piece of gear like a tape echo is no easy task.

The El Capistan employs powerful processor chips to handle every nuance in replicating a good tape unit.

Controls for Tape Age, Wow and Flutter, Tape head, and Mode support the usual Time, Mix, and Repeats controls on modern delay pedals.

A Tap tempo is included as a second footswitch; a feature that is impossible on vintage tape units.

Features

  • Controls: Time, Mix, Repeats, Tape Age, Wow & Flutter, Tape Head and Mode toggle switches, Tap Tempo
  • Delay Time: Max 770ms for standard delay mode, 20s for sound-on-sound (looper) mode
  • Switching: True Bypass (electromechanical relay switching) or Analog “trails” Bypass (selectable)
  • Additional Inputs/Outputs: Input, Left out, Right out, EXP in
  • Power: 9-Volt DC Adapter

Pros

Users note that the delays sound "lush" and "organic" with just the right amount of modulation by default. Accessing the hidden parameters opens up options for more experimental use. Reviews note its character to be dark and rich. The hidden parameter for low cut helps clear up the repeats.

Cons

Not the most user-friendly device according to some users. Delay may be too dark for some.

Overall

The El Capistan is your ticket aboard warm slapback echos and lush soundscapes. While not the most versatile delay on this list, the richness and ambience the El Capistan brings to your pedalboard is worth the price of admission.

Although this was previously on our recommended list, there are now more highly rated options available which you can see in our guide to The Best Delay Pedals.

About the Author

Raphael PulgarRaphael Pulgar

An audio engineer of 20 years who specializes in rock and metal recordings, he also plays guitar and produces original music for his band and other content creators.