Gear Thoughts: The Malekko Ekko 616 Analog Delay

This article is part of The Month Of Delay at the Real World Worship blog. All throughout the month of March we will be looking at different aspects of the delay effect in worship music.

Editor’s Note: Normally, I wouldn’t do a write up on a piece of gear that I’ve never played. Even if I have played or used something, if I haven’t had enough time with it I won’t review it because I really want to know what I’m talking about. But since we are in the Month of Delay, I’m making exception and writing down thoughts on delay pedals that I’ve only played a few times or have only heard YouTube demos of, so please take these for what they are.

Malekko

Malekko makes some really well made and innovative pedals. They also like to make things that go crazy, which is awesome of bands trying to push the limit, but not always awesome for church players who want to build a tone but not become the center of attention. I’ve found that every Malekko pedal I’ve used for worship has required a subtler approach.

WHY DO PEOPLE LOVE IT?

The 616 is a well liked, yet under appreciated analog delay on the level of an MXR Carbon Copy. What people like aside from it’s great, warm tone is it’s ability to add modulation and control the settings on the outside of the pedal instead of internal trim pots like with the MXR CC delay. You also have the ability with the press of a button to switch between true bypass and high quality buffered In/Outs.

A pedal like this will work great as a lead booster, atmosphere generator or just to fill in the gaps. You could use it for rhythmic delay, especially Slapback, but I don’t feel that it’s this pedals strong suit.

WHAT PROBLEMS DO I SEE WITH IT?

Malekko doesn’t do subtle well. They tend to make their pedals to go crazy in a good way. So for most of us, that means that you really have to dial it in to make it work for a church setting.

HOW WOULD YOU USE IT IN A WORSHIP SETTING?

At the moment I use it for a lead booster or to fill in the spaces. But you really could use it in a lot of different ways.

SHOULD I BUY IT?

If you’re looking for a basic analog delay then I would recommend the 616 over it’s contemporaries like the Carbon Copy or Memory Toy because of it’s control features. Being able to switch between True Bypass and Buffered & being able to externally control your modulation are both very cool features. So if you’re in the market for Carbon Copy level analog delay, why not check out the Malekko Ekko 616.

It’s found a place on my pedalboard and I recommend it.

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