If you’re the only guitarist in your band, you might feel like your sound could be a lot fuller. Having a mono rig puts your front-of-house engineer in a bit of a pickle – they can either leave you in the center of the mix, which can walk all over the lead vocal, or they can pan you to one side, which makes the mix feel lopsided and a little empty.
Enter stereo widening. This is a technique that was developed by studio engineers using the old Eventide H3000 Harmonizer rackmount unit (now the H9000) when both studio time and track count were at more of a premium than today. You take a single mono track and split it, pitching one side down and one side up a little bit, and then delay each one very slightly. This creates enough of a differentiation to trick the ear into believing it’s hearing a doubled performance or a stereo signal.
Long story short, it turns your mono signal into a stereo signal, allowing you to have a big, wide sound from a single mono instrument.
Today, Eventide released their new dot9 MicroPitch pedal, which puts this effect into a single compact pedal, and I got to take it for a test drive. Check out the video above to hear it in action. This is incredibly handy if you’re the lone guitarist in your band because now you can take the stereo widening trick from the studio onto the stage and fill out the venue with your tone.