That’s quite a name… for a spring reverb unit.
Made in the USA, with RCA/Sylvania valves and a Gibbs reverb tank, this is the sound of King Tubby and Lee Perry (see YouTube demo further down). A valve spring reverb is not something you’ll find (effectively) replicated in plug-in form: it’s a living, breathing sound. Boing.
So yes – here we have a Fisher Dynamic Space Expander for sale serviced and in good working order (bear in mind this is based on vintage 60s technology so isn’t whisper quiet).
It’s been fitted with a three-core mains cable for electrical safety and should be securely-mounted when installed. See detailed photos to assess condition.
As it is a USA 110v model, it will require a step-down transformer for use in the UK/EU. We do not recommend using cheap generic Chinese mains transformers and can supply a high quality UK-made transformer if required.
Check the YouTube demo we did of the last one we sold (further general info on springs including the Soundgas Springathon demo can be found further down the page):
The evolution of digital reverb left springs in the doghouse for many years – players and engineers were only too happy to be rid of the noisy and imperfect mechanical reverbs of the past. Springs were confined to recreating the sound of classic dub reggae and surf guitar. However, following decades of sonic perfection, there was a yearning for something different, something old. Tom Elmhirst mixing Amy Winehouse, Mark Ronson and Adele employed Pioneer hifi springs for a signature retro sound. Grammy Award-winning Nashville artists and producers (and up and coming engineers/producers in London) sprinkle fairy dust over guitars using Germanium transistor-based Telefunken Echomixers . Today’s dub producers, ever searching for that authentic sound, seek out the Grampian Type 636 reverb employed by Lee Perry at Black Ark (and by Pete Townshend in the late 60s for his guitar distortion, and Joe Meek before that). Using and abusing characterful and cranky spring reverbs is an antidote to an era when anyone with a laptop or digital guitar pedal has access to every modelled algorithm and space imaginable.
Tom Elmhirst interviewed about mixing Rolling In The Deep by Adele (Sound On Sound, Sept 2011):
“…the Pioneer on 55 56 is an old ‘70s ’80s spring reverb that was made for the domestic market.”
And on mixing Mark Ronson’s Record Collection album (Electronic Musician Sept 2010):
“I used a lot of external reverbs: a Fairchild 670, old spring reverbs, and a couple 1970s Pioneer Reverberation Amplifier Model SR-202s. They’re old home hi-fi units; they’re not normal! I am not a fan of digital reverb, so I have a few springs I really like… Spring reverb was a big part of the Winehouse record, and it’s in Mark’s sound as well. I use two or three different springs on a track and even on the vocal. I have an Orban 111B Spring Reverb, which is quite bright. The Pioneers are quite dull and long springs. So I combine the two.”
Try using a little tape delay before sending to a spring reverb, or use a digital/plug-in reverb and send the wet output from that to the spring to add character.
Soundgas Springathon YouTube demo below – 13 springs go head to head…
Taking part we have, in order of appearance: Carlsbro Reverb; Laney Supergroup; Allsound FH36; Telefunken Echomixer; Airline Valve Reverb (unserviced); Pioneer SR-202W; Pioneer SR-202; Pioneer SR-101; Sansui RA-500; Roland Space Echo RE-201; Schaller Reverb Unit; Grampian Type 636 battery unit; Grampian Type 636 mains powered; Vermona Retroverb.
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