Published 3 months ago on June 19, 2023

By Guitar Interactive Magazine

MSRP: (UK) £99 - £139

Infused with over four decades of acoustic-centric design experience—Fishman’s new AFX Mini acoustic effect pedals allow players to simply plug in and create new textures without losing the core sound of their instrument. Electric guitar effects are designed to alter your electric tone, and when used on acoustic instruments, tend to muddy-up your sound. AFX Minis are voiced to agree with the resonances of amplified acoustic guitar, so players don’t get unexpected results when playing at higher volumes. Nick Jennison takes a closer look at this impressive new range.

When it comes to pedals, it’s no stretch to say that acoustic guitarists are somewhat under-served. Sure, there are expensive all-singing-all-dancing floor preamps and a number of cheesy multi-effects units out there, but to my mind, the former always feels a bit over the top, and the latter feels like an afterthought.

Enter Fishman with their new line of AFX pedals. These four pedals are compact, affordable, and, most importantly, designed specifically for the acoustic guitar. They’re simple to use but have a number of clever hidden features to make gigging with your acoustic much more pleasant.

The Pro EQ Mini is a compact graphic EQ pedal with five sliders for low cut, bass, middle, treble and brilliance. The low cut progressively rolls out boomy lows, while the bass control is perfectly voiced for adding some much-needed resonance to weedy piezo pickups. Likewise, the mid and treble controls act on the “honk” and “bite” parts of the frequency spectrum, allowing you to take out some midrange clog and dial in the perfect amount of cut. Brilliance you might think of as a “string age” control - turn it up for some zing and air, back it down for some old string warmth (or even pseudo-nylon tones). It also sports input and output volumes, which may seem a little redundant at first, but given this is an all-analog unit, it’s possible to overdrive the internal preamp. This can actually be quite pleasant and round off some transient attacks, but if you want the cleanest of clean sounds, it’s easy to achieve.

The Broken Record is a one-knob loop pedal and sampler. The humble looper has become a “must-have” for every gigging acoustic guitarist, and this one does everything you’d hope it did without requiring a manual the size of a phone book to figure out. You can start, stop, overdub and undo all with the click of a single switch, and it can also be used to play back a sample which you can load via USB, which is as simple as dragging and dropping.

The AcoustiVerb is a reverb pedal with three modes (spring, plate and hall) and three controls (time, level and tone). Super straightforward, and very easy to use, but oh man, does it sound good. The hall mode, in particular, adds a gorgeous depth for solo playing, while the plate and spring settings are great for adding a touch of characterful ambience.

The Pocket Blender is an interesting addition, taking two input signals via a TRS jack and allowing you to switch between two different “blends” of these sources - the result of which can be output either as individual A and B sources over another TRS output for your FOH engineer to process separately or as a single mono DI source.

Speaking of TRS cables, this is where we get to talk about the clever routing possibilities afforded by the AFX range. Because all of these pedals are TRS in and out, you can run two sources in (say, a mic and a piezo, or a tap pickup and a soundhole pickup) and “assign” each pedal in the chain to either the “tip” or “ring” signals using switches on the back. For example, you could have two Pro EQ Minis (one for your piezo, one for your tap pickup), an AcoustiVerb that just affects the piezo, and then go into the Pocket Blender to set up two different “mixes” of the two - all summed and outputted into a Broken Record for looping. The Pro EQ Mini and AcoustiVerb footswitches can also be assigned to work either as bypass (true bypass or buffered bypass, selectable on the rear) or as a mute switch, meaning your second Pro EQ Mini can also work as a mute for your tap pickup.

The Fishman AFX range is exceptionally well thought out and allows you to use them in as simple or as complex a manner as you’d like. Whether you just want some simple tone shaping for your piezo pickup or you’re a multi-source wizard looking for clever signal routing in an elegant and compact form, these pedals have you covered. They sound great, too!

For more information, please visit:


Top magnifiercross linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram