THE VOLCANO: MIDI AND PEDAL CONTROLLED VOLUME EFFECT
If you've been using a traditional volume pedal to sweep the volume of your guitar or other instrument and are looking to step up to greater control and tonal transparency, then look no further than the Volcano. Plug the Volcano between your instrument and amp or in the effect loop of your amp and attach either an expression pedal or MIDI footcontroller (or both) to sweep the gain of your instrument just like a volume pedal but with much greater clarity, precision, and control. Under MIDI control you can select different sweep ranges for the expression pedal or MIDI pedal or jump directly to a specific gain. The Volcano can boost your instrument level by up to 18dB, offers cool CC switch (instant access) features such as mute, bypass, boost by addition and MIDI programs that include different sweep gains, custom sweep curves, increment/decrement of fixed or swept gains and much more. Even select a preset to output CC messages over different channels in response to the expression pedal movement.
Unlike all other volume effects, the Volcano does not use the common VCA (voltage controlled amp). Instead it rapidly switches in different resistors to change the gain. This precision method of gain control is the cleanest, most transparent method possible. With a resolution of 1/3dB, a range of 90dB, and a differential internal signal path, the sound and control is simply remarkable. There is no other volume effect with this kind of quality. The Volcano was in development for over a year because of the demands of the design, but the result was well worth the effort and truly meets the high standards of Sound Sculpture quality.
The Volcano operates in either of two modes, Locally or through MIDI, selectable by internal switches. In local mode, the user can select 1 of 15 programs using the switches and needs only an expression pedal attached to operate. The programs select various volume ranges such as Mute to 0dB or Mute to +18dB and so on. Several Volcanoes can be connected together in local mode using MIDI cables and all units attached will follow exactly the sweep of the first unit in the chain. This is a great way to control the gain of several amps connected to your guitar using only a single expression pedal with no MIDI required.
When a MIDI controller is attached to the Volcano the number of available programs increases to 128. Using Program Change messages you can select any fixed gain from MUTE to +18dB in 2dB increments, or a wide variety of sweep gain ranges allowing the user to select both wide and more limited ranges with various starting and ending gains when the pedals are moved. Additional programs are available for panning (when using 2 units together), incrementing and decrementing gains by 3, 6, 9, and 12dB at a time which can be applied to both fixed gains or to the end gain of a sweep range. There are also commands to transmit various CC commands out the MIDI port under expression pedal control, and additional commands to apply 1 of 7 available custom curves to the currently selected range.
Additionally the unit will also respond to MIDI CC on/off commands to mute, bypass, turn on omni mode, and to add 3, 6, and 12dB of gain additively using up to 15 switches. The units sweep function responds to MIDI CC #0.