what is a dynamic harmonic tremolo? The Ages is the dynamic harmonic tremolo of our Origins series.Simply, a harmonic tremolo is two tremolos arranged in parallel. One will let the high frequencies pass while the other will cut the low frequencies, and this alternately, which creates a signal rotation effect. If you want to learn more about how it works, there is another article dedicated to this subject.Another advantage of the Ages is its attack detector which will make the settings of each tremolo react according to the dynamics of the signal! main features and parameters of the dynamic harmonic tremolo depth The intensity of the tremolo.At minimum, there is almost no tremolo.At maximum, the tremolo completely mutes the sound. tone To change the cutoff frequency of the harmonic tremolo.For a darker or brighter tremolo. subdivisions The rotary knob at the bottom right with 4 positions.The 1st position doubles the tapped tempo.The 2nd leaves the tempo at the tapped speed.The 3rd divides the tempo by 2.And the last one divides the tempo by 3. attack detector A 3-position toggle switch to set the attack sensor.At the top, the attack changes the speed of the tremolo.In the middle, the attack has no influence on any parameter.At the bottom, the attack changes the depth of the tremolo. out The output level of the tremolo. Up to +6dB can be added without saturation. on/off switch To turn the pedal on/off with a single press.When the pedal is off, the LED flashes slightly in red.When it is turned on, it flashes strongly in white.All in rhythm with the RATE of the tremolo.TRIMPOT MODE, to access the new hidden settings, you have to hold the switch down for more than two seconds.The LED will change colour and turns blue.The pots now give access to new parameters detailed later.To exit this mode, simply do not touch anything for more than ten seconds, or press that footswitch again.A short press is enough to exit the mode. tap switch No RATE pot, it’s all done with Tap Tempo.Just press the footswitch twice and the system calculates the tempo and applies it to the current effect.However, 3 to 5 presses will be more precise, because the pedal will calculate the average before applying it. using and setting up the attack detector The attack sensor is the part of the Ages that makes the harmonic tremolo dynamic.So we have implemented an analog and digital cell that allows us to analyze the intensity of the attack and then translate that into actions on the tremolo.For example, a strong pick hit will cause an acceleration of the Rate (the speed) of the Ages. Each guitar is unique, so we have different pickup levels. So in order to take full advantage of the Ages’ features, you will have to learn how to adjust this cell properly. prerequisites The pedal needs to be turned on (white LED flashing).The DEPTH setting must be at maximumThe RATE setting should not be set too high. The ideal setup is a direct connection between guitar, pedal and amp, nothing else.You can of course chain other pedals, but that will cause level changes!/!\ the performance of the attack detector can be seriously compromised if a compression effect is placed before it /!\ enable the attack detector of the dynamic harmonic tremolo Move the center toggle switch of the pedal to “R” (Rate) or “D” (Depth).The attack detector is now enabled. “R” Means that the guitar attack will act on the RATE“D” Means that the guitar attack will act on the DEPTH By default, the Ages’ attack detector will act as follows: During a strong attack the LED and the LFO speed will accelerate if the switch is set to RATE.If the switch is set to DEPTH, then the effect will disappear during the strong attack and reappear afterwards. change the settings of the attack detector Before changing the settings, here are the settings that we advise you to hear the impact of the detector, we can change them later with a bit of practice.OUT = 75% | DEPTH = 100% | TONE = 75% | SUBDIV = 4/4 | TAP around 80 bpm. Come on, let’s go!Press at least 3s on the on/off footswitch of the Ages, the LED is now blue ! The pedal is in trimpot mode.You now have access to the hidden settings of the AGES, that is to say: envelop If this pot is at 12 o’clock then the envelope detector will not act on the effect. The more the knob is turned to the right, the more the attack will increase the DEPTH or RATE depending on the mode.The more the knob is turned to the left, the more the attack will lower the DEPTH or RATE depending on the mode. /!\ If the RATE/DEPTH is set too high or too low depending on the setting, no difference will be heard. /!\ threshold It is used to adjust the precision of the detector. The higher it is, the higher the sensitivity of the envelope detector will be.At 0% you will have to scratch very hard to hear a variation of the effect, inversely, at 100% the slightest movement will vary the effect. A brief press on ON/OFF will return the pedal to its normal state (white LED) while saving the settings made. the killswitch mode The killswitch mode only works when the pedal is off. It cuts the trebles and reactivates them when the TAP footswitch is held down. To enter killswitch mode, first bypass the pedal, so it will flash very slightly in red.Then press the TAP footswitch for 3s, the LED will then light up briefly in blue, the mode is enabled. It will stop flashing.To exit this mode, press ON/OFF. Pedal turned OFF: Now, by quickly pressing the Tap you can mute the sound. When you release the treble comes back. oscillation mode The oscillation mode only works when the pedal is turned on. It allows the RATE to increase to a high frequency similar to an E.To activate this mode, hold the TAP footswitch when the pedal is ON (LED flashing white), the RATE will then start to accelerate faster and faster!To deactivate this mode, release the TAP footswitch and the RATE will return to its normal state. Pedal turned ON: the chef’s setting Now that you know the basics of the Ages, take a break and test the team’s favourite settings! So in “classic” mode, i.e. flashing white LED, here are the settings we prefer: In “trimpots” mode so blue LED: What about you? Any settings to advise us? the lfo what is an lfo? The LFO is a signal for controlling the tremolo effect. When this signal is low the pedal will mute the sound, conversely if it is high, it will let it pass. LFOs are mainly used for keyboards, for more info about them, here is a Wikipedia dedicated to this. As it was said at the beginning, the Ages has 2 tremolos so 2 LFOs: one control the high frequencies and the other one the low frequencies. Their values are opposite: when one lets the sound pass through, the other cuts it and vice versa. This wave can take several forms in the Ages, we will discover them together and then we will see how to change them. change the lfo Press the ON/OFF footswitch of the Ages for 3s, the LED is now blue.The central toggle switch and the subdivision selector can now be used to change the waveform of the tremolos: waves on the central toggle switch (from top to bottom) Top: sinus Middle: rising ramp Bottom: falling ramp waves on the rotary switch at the bottom right (from left to right) 2/1 : square 4/4 : polynomial 1/2 : double cos 1/3 : triple cos to go further Finer settings are available inside the Ages. They allow you to fine-tune the effects of the LFO on each tremolo. The letters B and T correspond to BASS and TREBLE, for example, GAIN_B will act on the GAIN of the bass section of the tremolo. gain Turning this trimpot clockwise will increase the gain of the tremolo channel. Either for bass or treble.Therefore we can make the tremolo more “bassy” or more “clear”.We can also compensate for the loss of volume due to the psycho-acoustic behavior of our listening to find its unity gain.By raising the gain, of course, we increase the noise, so we have slightly tightened this setting before delivering. offset, be careful with the precision adjustment! This trimpot allows you to adjust the minimum and maximum position of the LFO, the higher it is, the more the signal of the tremolo in question will be present. The idea of this trimpot is to center the LFO perfectly so that it does not saturate.It is therefore adjusted in advance for each pedal. But that doesn’t prevent some of you will like to manipulate it until the LFO clips and obtain quite experimental tones./!\ this setting is technical and can easily be confused with the gain, to be modified in moderation. features of the mini-switches on the dynamic harmonic tremolo filters The mini switches are at the bottom right of the Ages, they are small white zippers which are by 4 in a black box.When you put them on top with a small flat screwdriver, the switch is ON. Then when you put them down, the switch is OFF. These switches will play with the bandwidth of the dynamic harmonic tremolo and we will discover together their functions. 1er switch2ème switch3ème switch4ème switchpasse haut de la section bassespasse bas de la section bassespasse bas de la section aiguspasse haut de la section aigusSwitch on170 Hz440 Hz5,83 kHz1,43 kHzSwitch off115 Hz140 Hz1,53 kHz843 HzCut-off frequencies of the harmonic tremolo filters default settings for trimpots Nom du réglage RéglageGAIN_B9/10GAIN_T8/10OFFSET_B7,2/10OFFSET_T6/10SWITCH 1ONSWITCH 2OFFSWITCH 3ONSWITCH 4OFFIn case you get lost, here are the original settings set by our team. the spinner The Spinner is an external element that can be connected to the Ages.It is an accessory that allows you to interact on stage with the Ages.Indeed, its rotation speed will vary the RATE of the pedal. The Spinner can also activate and deactivate the Ages momentarily.This is very useful to obtain a tremolo effect momentarily and then let it go off smoothly… You don’t have a Spinner? Go to the website page to get one to build or already assembled! to connect the spinner Disconnect the Ages from its 9V power supply.Make sure that the slide switch TAP is not engaged, switch inside the Ages.Connect the Ages and the Spinner with the included cable.Reconnect the power supply to the Ages. The Spinner is now detected, rotate it to observe a variation of the RATE of the Ages.Is it working? Good, now we’ll test the three modes of the Spinner: acceleration mode: switch on top Before any action on the Spinner:If the Ages was on, a hit on the Spinner will accelerate the RATE of the Ages.If the Ages was off, a tap in the Spinner will turn on the Ages. Then its RATE will also accelerate according to the speed of the Spinner. Once the speed of the Spinner drops below a speed threshold, the Ages will turn itself off. deceleration mode: switch down Same functions as in acceleration mode except that this time, when the Spinner spins fast, the RATE of the Ages decreases. raw mode: switch in the center This mode only works when the Ages is off. It activates it in killswitch mode.Then each time a magnet of the Spinner passes in front of the sensor, it will simulate the foot pressure of the Ages killswitch. spinner internal settings The spinner has 3 settings: th_l If the rotation speed of the Spinner goes above this threshold, we turn on the Ages and stop modifying its RATE. For example:•At the minimum, you need a low speed to start the Ages.•At the maximum, you need to rotate very fast before turning it on. The goal is to have the possibility to “lock” the Spinner against small flicks that are accidentally put in during a live performance.On the other hand, someone playing at home may want a very sensitive detection. th_h If the Spinner’s rotation speed falls below this threshold, the Ages is turned off and the RATE is no longer modified. For example:•At minimum, the Ages will be kept on while the Spinner is running.•At maximum, the Ages will be turned off quite quickly because its rotation speed will drop below the selected speed threshold. By setting this control high enough, you can, for example, kick the Spinner and get a tremolo effect for a short while and then let it spin smoothly because it will turn itself off fairly quickly.Alternatively, you can turn it to minimum and turn off the effect by blocking the Spinner’s rotation. impact This setting defines the impact of spinner rotation on the RATE of the Ages. For example:•At minimum, a quick spin of the Spinner will cause very little variation in the RATE of the Ages.•At maximum, a very low spinner rotation will cause the RATE to vary a lot. external tap tempo The tempo of the Ages can be controlled directly from the pedal but we know that a simple format pedal with 2 very close fooswitches can destabilize Doc Martens aficionados! That’s why we’ve created a tiny external tap tempo to connect to the Ages that can be placed anywhere on the pedalboard! Here is the procedure for using the external tap tempo: •Disconnect the power supply of the Ages.•Remove the rear cover of the pedal with a screwdriver.•Position the TAP slide-switch downwards.•Connect the external TAP footswitch using the supplied 3.5mm stereo jack.•Reconnect the Ages power supply. conclusion The Ages dynamic harmonic tremolo is full of possibilities, it’s an effect that is both complex in its quantity of features and richness of sound, but at the same time very easy to use once you’ve identified it.We hope that with this article we have answered all your questions, do not hesitate to ask us in comments so that we can answer them and that it will be useful for the whole community! We leave you in music with a few videos of artists who knew how to exploit the Ages as it should be!