With a seemingly endless profusion of digital delays and ever more faithful vintage echo emulations on the market, one might find it difficult to conceive of a new take on this classic effect. Leave it to the innovative Mac OS development team at Sinevibes to come at it from a refreshing angle, employing multiple delay lines to subdivide synchronized echoes into arhythmic contortions – all whilst remaining resolutely on the clock.
Sinevibes’ trademark spartan design makes Dispersion a pleasure to work with. The central six delay dials are flanked by a trio of modulation parameters on the left and three mix parameters on the right. Modulation amount and Frequency control the degree of pitch shift to the delays – useful for subtle drift or frenetic vibrato – while the stereo dial spreads pitched differentials for enhanced width.
Input adjusts the incoming signal gain, while Send and Return dials simulate a built-in auxiliary send configuration, presenting a clever solution to a common issue with delay effects that allows for automation to easily delay certain signals without interrupting the resulting echoes the way a Dry/Wet knob typically would.
The core of Dispersion’s unique take on delay is controlled by the synchronized Time and Bounce dials. Time provides host-synchronized delay values from 1/16th up to 4 bars, while the Bounces can be set from 1 to 16. With Bounce set to 1, Dispersion behaves like a normal delay effect, with delay patterns determined entirely by the Time control. Where it gets interesting is with Bounce set to higher values, which adds corresponding delay taps algorithmically distributed within the allocated Time division.
Dispersion’s Bounce algorithm can be further steered by the Direction control, with the Up setting making the first Bounces closer together before decelerating and the Down setting moving the opposite direction, with each arhythmic bounce occurring faster than the one before. An onion-style capsule graphic up top helpfully represents the number of bounces and direction they’re headed.
The dedicated Feedback control behaves as expected, while a cleverly-programmed bi-directional Damping knob filters out higher frequencies at lower settings and lower frequencies at higher settings via combined Low-pass/High-pass circuit. Finally, the Fade mode determines whether the feedback and damping are calculated on a per-bounce basis, fading smoothly into oblivion in Single mode, or in Round mode, taking effect on each sequence of bounces for a more staggered result with increased rhythmic emphasis.
Dispersion’s twelve parameters lend themselves to a variety of deployment options. With Feedback minimized, a high bounce value and longer delay times, you can easily create stereotypical bouncing ball delays; at higher bounce settings in Single mode with short delay times and some tweaks to feedback and damping you can create delightfully blurry granular decay tails. Using time and bounce settings somewhere in between delivers detailed ratcheting repetitions that are truly unique.
Whether you’re a seasoned dub professional who’s mastered every delay under the sun, or are just looking for a new take on rhythmic spatialization to boost your creativity, Dispersion provides new paths to delay dominion. With a Retina-ready display, full automation capabilities and a very friendly price tag, it’s certainly worth a shot – unless, of course, you’re on PC.