Make Noise's new Mimeophon VS Echophon: Whats different, whats similar?
Superbooth 19 was full of surprises. Never a company to disappoint, Make Noise brought out some new offerings that are getting us pretty excited here at Nerd Audio. Today, we’re going to take a close look at the brand new Mimeophon, and compare it to its older sibling, Echophon. Both modules deal more or less with delay effects, albeit with the inventive approach that we’ve come to expect from Make Noise. We want to stress that just because the Mimeophon is new doesn’t mean that it’s strictly “better” than the Echophon. We will highlight the strengths of each below.
The chief difference between Mimeophon and Echophon is stereo. Mimeophon has left and right inputs and outputs for stereo patching. Mono-to-stereo conversion is possible via the left input jack. Echophon is mono only. Mimeophon includes a “skew” button which applies the rate control oppositely per stereo channel, leading to layered, rhythmically dense stereo imaging.
Echophon, for its part, has robust pitch shifting capabilities that the Mimeophon lacks: it can shift incoming signals +/- two octaves. Pitch shifting can be applied with variable depth, and at the highest depth it can take volt-per-octave CV, for precise control of pitched echoes. It’s possible to feed echoes back into Echophon’s signal path through the pitch shifter with each iteration, resulting in cascading pitched delays. Another feedback model is provided that bypasses the pitch shifter for traditional echo effects. These two models can be smoothly faded between.
Speaking of feedback, Echophon exposes its feedback loop via separate input and output jacks. This makes it easy to process delays with your other Eurorack gear, say, a filter or a distortion. The Mimeophon does not have an open feedback path, but it does include extensive tone shaping capabilities in the module.
A “flip” button produces reverse echoes. The “halo” control smears each echo, and gives a reverb-like feel. “Color” brightens or darkens the tone for filter-style effects. The “zone” control determines the size of each buffer, going from granular slices up to loop-length repeats, and at the highest/longest setting will start to recall material from earlier repeats. Altering the zone control will not produce any pitch shifting or doppler effects as you might expect from the average delay unit. Changing the “rate” control does result in pitch shifting unless Mimeophon is receiving a clock signal, in which case rate will multiply or divide the incoming clock.
In addition to the clock inputs available on both modules, Echophon also includes a clock output for syncing gear downstream. It’s not clear from any available materials whether Mimeophon provides clock output, but there is a jack on the lower left side of the module that wasn’t addressed at Superbooth and seems like a potential candidate.
Echophon includes a “freeze” button which locks the delay onto a single snatch of material and repeats it while the control is engaged. Any edits made to Echophon’s controls will affect the frozen buffer. Mimeophon’s “hold” control works roughly the same way, except that it is described as non-destructive, meaning that any changes made in hold mode do not affect the state of the buffer when hold is disengaged.
Last but not least, Echophon comes in at 20 HP and $399. Mimeophon is 16 HP wide, price TBD. Both modules include CV control for every parameter, with the exception of skew. All in all, Mimeophon represents an exciting addition to Make Noise’s lineup, and should pair very well with the rest of their current and forthcoming stereo offerings, including QPAS, X-PAN, and XOH. Keep an eye on our online inventory and snag yourself a stereo Make Noise setup when the time comes.