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Electro-Harmonix Voice Box Harmony Machine and Vocoder (October 2020)

Electro-Harmonix Voice Box Harmony Machine and Vocoder

Electro-Harmonix Voice Box Harmony Machine and Vocoder

  • ✔ Very professional quality pitch shifting algorithm
  • ✔ Vocoder mode
  • ✔ Intelligent vocal harmonies
  • ✔ Natural Glissando
A vocal effect pedal that can handle harmony and vocoder duties in one package.
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The Voice Box, at it’s heart, has a 256-band vocoder, which is impressive as it means a clear diction. To emphasis this, the microKorg has an eight-band vocoder. The Voice Box has six harmony/two octave modes for accompanying solo singers.

Electro-Harmonix is a well-known brand of effects pedals. As such, their approach can often times be different. Electro-Harmonix’s Voice Box Harmony Machine definitely follows one of their more unusual designs, but also one of the most reliable and best vocal harmonizer pedals you can get right now. Let’s check out this bad boy.

Well known for their extensive line of quality guitar pedals, EHX knows that there’s always room for one more pedal. So with the Voice Box, they decided to create a pedal for singing instrumentalists to play with, resulting in a vocal effect pedal that can handle harmony and vocoder duties in one package.

First up is the Blend dial that controls the balance between your dry/effected voice. Next are two Reverb dials (dry/harmony). The reverb, while fairly dark sounding, is very useful. You could have a dry vocal with reverbed harmony effect for example, or vice versa.

If you have seen one Electro-Harmonix pedal, you have pretty much seen them all. Aside from the graphic design on the top, not a whole lot of stuff changes. We still have the main row of knobs at the very top of the pedal, while the foot switches are at the bottom. In the middle of its interface, you will find LED diodes which indicate the harmony mode you’re in. Knobs include Blend, Dry and Harmony knobs for Reverb, Gender Bend, Voice Mix and Preset Select knob.

You can switch between nine harmony modes that cover quite a lot of ground, from low to high, to multi-harmonies and octaves. Its coolest feature however is the Vocoder mode which turns this professional vocal effect into a fun experimental effect. Other features include reverb and gender bending via pitch shifting.

We found the harmony generation a little unstable and inconsistent at times, though useable results are possible after plenty of practice. While we can’t complain at all about the generated tones, the box would often have difficulty picking up any of the quick major to minor changes and some of the more jazzy inflections. Even though it does not come with cool LCD displays and similar flashy features, Electro-Harmonix Voice Box Harmony Machine is truly a force to be reckoned with. Better than that, it is just fun to use. Those who own a whole lot of different equipment could benefit from a unit such as this one.

If you have seen one Electro-Harmonix pedal, you have pretty much seen them all. Aside from the graphic design on the top, not a whole lot of stuff changes. We still have the main row of knobs at the very top of the pedal, while the foot switches are at the bottom. In the middle of its interface, you will find LED diodes which indicate the harmony mode you’re in. Knobs include Blend, Dry and Harmony knobs for Reverb, Gender Bend, Voice Mix and Preset Select knob.

At the end of the day, Electro-Harmonix has given us a fairly simple, yet straight to the point harmonizer. It’s very strong in places that matter, although some would probably write off points for the lack of advanced features. We’ve found it to be just the right kind of spicy. All in all, this is a fantastic vocoder and a very capable but sometimes frustrating harmony generation box. The harmony processor is very much reliant on very in-tune singing and decent vocal/instrument levels going in (ideally, use a compressor between the mic and the voice box).