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Chorus pedals can open up some previously unexplored sounds in your rig.

If you've always been curious about the effect but have been hesitant to make a purchase, or haven't had the time to do the proper research to see if you'd even like it, you're in the right place.

To help you explore your options, we asked 8 guitar players what their favorite chorus pedals are, and why they love them.

Before we get into the responses, let's cover a bit of basic info about what chorus pedals actually do, and how you can get the best one for your style of music.

What does a chorus pedal do?

A chorus pedal is meant replicate the sound of large choirs and string sections of music by giving your guitar the tone of dozens of different guitars playing together at once. In its most basic form, a chorus pedal attempts to achieve this by splitting your guitar's signal into two or more parts, then detunes and adds color to one (or all) of them. You can also use them to add subtle modulations to your sound or in more radical ways for more drastic effects.

The chorus effect is difficult to explain in text form, so to get a better idea of what the chorus effect actually is and how it changes your guitars tone, check out this video.

Should I get a digital or analog chorus pedal?

Among guitarists who use chorus pedals, this is an ongoing debate. Some guitarists swear by analog pedals because they think it maintains a more natural sound, while others prefer the digital route.

If you listen to analog chorus pedals, they tend to sound warmer, while digital chorus pedals sound brighter. One isn't necessarily better than the other - it's mostly preference. Choose the one that's best for the sound you're going for.

What to look for in a chorus pedal

Price: When it comes to chorus pedals, as with most musician gear, you can't exactly get the cheapest option and expect results. With these, you really do get what you pay for, so make sure you spend the money to get a high quality piece of equipment.

Range: The best chorus pedals will usually have a range that can handle more subtle sounds in addition to the really intense effects that more experimental guitarists will want.

Voicing: A good chorus pedal will be properly voiced in your rig. A chorus pedal that emphasizes either bass and low-mid frequencies or higher frequencies can ruin your entire guitar rig once engaged.

Where should a chorus pedal sit on the pedal board?

Modulation effects like chorus should generally be placed at the end of your effects chain. It's better to add chorus or delay to your distortion, which was usually placed near the front of the pedal chain.

How do I control a chorus pedal?

Simple chorus pedals have only 2 knobs - a Depth knob and a Rate knob.

The Depth control governs the intensity of the chorus effect.

The Rate knob controls the number of milliseconds of delay added to the chorus effect.

More modern chorus pedals may have additional knobs to control some of the EQ, such as a treble or bass, or they simply have an effect level knob that lets you control chorusing gets mixed with your straight guitar sound.

Some chorus pedals have stereo outputs that let you run into two amps at once and create a wider stereo chorus effect.


Now that we've covered the basics of chorus pedals, let's dive in to the top 8 chorus pedals as recommended by guitar players.

Top 8 Chorus Pedals - According to Guitarists


Stephen Perry from City Sounds Rhythm

Facebook | iTunes


What's the best chorus pedal?

Boss CH-1 Stereo Super Chorus

Check Price on Amazon

What makes it awesome?

It's a no nonsense chorus. Easy to man the tone Compatible for solid state and tubes durability is unreal for any BOSS pedals. Boss pedals are never too expensive.


Jerry Hamilton from That 80's Rock Band

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What's the best chorus pedal?

Eventide H9 Max Harmonizer Pedal

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What makes it awesome?

The H9's chorus effects are amazing. This pedal will give your guitar a subtle to dense warm chorus effect. These are studio quality effects that are used in countless songs.


Seth Michael Keil from Powder River

Bandcamp


What's the best chorus pedal?

Old Blood Noise Endeavors Reflector V2

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What makes it awesome?

Reflector has does so much more than just a simple chorus. It can give a tremolo like warble or even flange in addition to more traditional chorus sounds. I prefer off kilter, noise pedals. This is a chorus for explorers and weirdos.


Jeremy Aitken

Bandcamp


What's the best chorus pedal?

MXR M234 Analog Chorus Pedal

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What makes it awesome?

This pedal get's every chorus sound you could ever need. From classic Police tones, to fattening up your distorted sound ala Alex Lifeson up to your favorite Nirvana tones!


Patrick Wilkins

Instagram | Twitter | YouTube


What's the best chorus pedal?

Electro-Harmonix Small Clone

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What makes it awesome?

I've had so many of these and I honestly can’t tell you why, it’s simple, and I enjoy the way it reacts and how easy it is to dial in. Downside - they break easily.


Chris Saalfeld from Orchid in the Ivy

Facebook


What's the best chorus pedal?

Maxon 9-Series Pure Analog Chorus

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What makes it awesome?

True analog, true bypass, and it has that awesome corny 80’s sound that i love for chorus pedals.


John Hancock

Facebook


What's the best chorus pedal?

Electro-Harmonix Stereo Electric Mistress Chorus/Flanger Pedal

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What makes it awesome?

Choruses generally sound pretty ugly to me, but I use the Electro-Harmonix Electric Mistress flanger/chorus combo. It gives you a trippy sound that's very nice when combined with delay. Playing with the knobs can produce some really cool noises.


David Mahew from City of Takers

Bandcamp


What's the best chorus pedal?

Dunlop M148 MXR Micro Chorus

Check Price on Amazon

What makes it awesome?

THERE IS ONE KNOB. One. I don't use chorus often but when I do I need it to be easy. It works and it's awesome.



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