Like many gear hounds worldwide, we're all pretty big fans of Brian Wampler's stuff here at Rogue Guitar Shop. Wampler are mostly known for their amp in a box pedals and other forms of grit. While pedals such as the Plextortion are fantastic, often their modulation and echo pedals are overlooked. With an already impressive lineup of effects Brian Wampler decided it was time to release a tremolo pedal. Being Wampler, it wasn't going to just be another tremolo pedal with three knobs and a true bypass switch.
Controls and features:
As in the instructions sheet it says, “Finally a tremolo with all the bells and whistles!”. First judgment of the appearance of the pedal yields a not large, but not small enclosure. Extensive controls includng two foot switches and a toggle switch. It appears to be all the bells and whistles indeed. The visual design is among the most pleasing I've witnessed on any Wampler pedal. The name Latitude with a fitting compass, fancy cursive script writing as the font for all the text.
As I already said, the Latitude Deluxe features an absolutely extensive control set. First we have two footswitches, one is the effect true bypass switch. The other is a tap tempo switch, I'll get more into that one a little later! The control knobbies are Level, Speed, Space, Depth and Attack. There's a toggle switch for Waveform and a little push button switch for tap subdivisions! So not only do you get the ability to tap your trem on the fly, you can set specific subdivisions.
For those of you not familiar with tremolo, this may sound weird. I find the Volume control to be a very important feature on a tremolo pedal. This is mostly for the perceived volume loss, but it can make the tremolo a bit stronger as well. As expected, Speed controls the overall speed of the tremolo effect. Space lets you dial in how much dead space you want between the trem volume bursts. Very interesting feature to me even before I used the pedal. Depth is more or less a mix control between the trem and the dry signal. Allowing for a non choppy to extremely choppy helicopter tremolo. The unique Attack control lets you dial in how much punch you get with the tremolo. The Waveform toggle goes between Peak, Sine, and Square waves.
To be honest, I'm much more of a fan of vibrato. I know it's a very different effect and that may be why. But here comes this thing crash landing in front of me at Rogue Guitar Shop saying, “Look at me!” A trem with all of these features could surely be dialed in to my liking, yes? Only one way to find out, so after letting the amp warm up I plugged in. There is a very helpful list of suggested settings, so I decided to start with one or two of those. First one I used was the Born on the Bye – You setting. This setting has the Speed all the way down, the Space about 1:30, the Depth about 1:00, the Level and Attack both at noon. The Waveform toggle to the Peak wave and the Sub division switch set to 8th notes. It immediately reminded me of a song from one of my personal favorite bands of all time, who happens to have a song with a title close to that of the settings name. Very warm and vintage voiced tremolo here, non-obtrusive and lets your tone shine through.
Next I hopped to the Classic Soul setting, for a very good reason. I figured it'd be a good launching point for my tweaking frenzy. Since all of the knobs are set to noon! Beyond that, the Waveform toggle is set to Sine wave and the Sub division toggle is set to quarter notes. This is a surprisingly great setting, so you could tell that Brian Wampler intended this thing to sound good at any setting. Again very warm, not very choppy, nice and smooth. Through tweaking I find a never ending sea of tremolo sounds, it's fair to say I've found a pedal that lets me appreciate the effect finally. My two favorite settings are nice, slow and subtle. As well extreme square wave helicopter choppiness! Overall this is a very good option for big fans of trem, or people looking to get into the effect easily. But still with the ability for many sounds.
It gets a high mark for being the ultimate tremolo out there, without spending an arm and a leg! Let it grace your ears and you decide for yourself!