The Top 11 Delay Pedals in the World Right Now

Dave Mostert
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A prime tool in many professional guitarists’ pedalboards, delay pedals turn a guitar’s signal into a repetitive echo that can be manipulated in numerous ways. These pedals have a lot of versatility and are capable of producing everything from slight vibrato to heavy, massive sounds.

Having a delay pedal is great because it’s one of the few effects that can be used to enrich your sound without getting overly noodly.

While it’s true you can get a lot of cool sounds from the processing units of your multi-effects unit, you have to play less notes to get that sound. With a delay pedal, you can jam out and overdub different parts that all echo out in cascading style. Or you can set the pedal to repeat one note many times, and you’ll get that single note to sound much thicker and louder.

In this list, we’ve compiled 11 delay pedals that will provide you with excellent possibilities on both of these ends of the delay spectrum.

NameCategoryProduct
MXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay Guitar Effects PedalBest OverallMXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay Guitar Effects Pedal
Donner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True BypassBudget PickDonner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True Bypass
Boss DD-7 Digital Delay PedalUpgrade PickBoss DD-7 Digital Delay Pedal

1. MXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay Guitar Effects Pedal

Our rating: 9 / 10

MXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay Guitar Effects Pedal

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Pros:

  • Simple to use – features two knobs
  • Manufactured by one of the most trusted brands in the industry
  • Versatile sound – ideal for a wide range of styles
  • Can be used as an effect in an amp or as a standalone pedal
  • Affordable for most budgets
  • Reliable

Cons:

  • Plastic casing
  • The slight loss of high-end frequencies can also become an issue

What’s this? A verbose delay pedal that’s actually affordable? Believe it or not, MXR has it. The Carbon Copy by MXR combines vintage all-analog design with modern digital technology for a superb delay effect that’s ideal for a wide range of playing styles.

The device is very simple to use when it comes to its interface. It only has two knobs, one to control the volume of your note and give it a length, and the other to control the sound of the repeats. The MXR Carbon Copy is also very easy to use in a live setting with its true bypass functionality. It’s also very versatile, giving you up to 600ms of delay time.

2. Donner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True Bypass

Our rating: 8 / 10

Donner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True Bypass

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Pros:

  • Multi-delay modes include tape, analogue mod, and reverb mod
  • Can create rich, lo-fi sounds
  • Sturdy metal casing
  • True bypass
  • Integrated LED indicator

Cons:

  • Not super easy to use
  • Has a noticeable amount of hiss when you first use it
  • Pedal casing is not always up to your standards

You will want to access a delay pedal when you want an echo effect in your guitar solo and sound output. The Donner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal boasts an array of bright and versatile delay effects.

The multi-delay modes offered by this pedal have the ability to capture the classic sound that you might remember from the sixties and seventies. This product also lets you blend a reverb effect with your echo to get a warm, ambient sound. They also allow the sound to accurately capture the delay volume.

The pedal can create rich and lo-fi sounds that you can layer on top of your guitar sound. Sound is accurate and true to your input in its performance. The addition of knobs for modulation, plus a larger area for tapping out your beats, make this pedal a versatile option for any guitarist.

3. Boss DD-7 Digital Delay Pedal

Our rating: 8 / 10

Boss DD-7 Digital Delay Pedal

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Pros:

  • Easy, two-button operation
  • Classic Boss tone

Cons:

  • Some units experience difficulties
  • The buttons are said to be a little sticky

The Boss DD-7 is a functional delay pedal which was designed with simplicity in mind. It comes with only two knobs, one for controlling delay time, and the other for adjusting delay volume. There is also a button which you can push to switch between three available modes.

Undoubtedly one of the most appealing features of this pedal is its simplicity. With just two knobs and one button, you can start playing in no time. The first knob lets you select between three delay types: first is a classic analog type of delay, second is a more modern digital delay, and the final one is called "tape echo" which emulates the classic muffled sound of a tape echo.

The pedal also comes with knobs for adjusting delay time and delay volume. ThereÆs some slight confusion with the terminology here, as the pedal comes with a delay level knob, and you think it would control the volume of the delay, but it doesnÆt æ instead, that knob sets the blend between the wet and dry signal.

4. TC Electronic FlashBack Delay and Looper Guitar Delay Effect Pedal

Our rating: 8 / 10

TC Electronic FlashBack Delay and Looper Guitar Delay Effect Pedal

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Pros:

  • Very smooth sounding
  • Can be used to make various styles of delay effects
  • Highly accurate delay levels
  • Allows control of feedback levels and delay time
  • Allows for control of true stereo delay
  • Can be powered by a 9-volt battery or a power supply
  • Very affordable

Cons:

  • There might be a delay in between when you’re playing your guitar and when the sound comes out, leading to an effect of “lag” or echo
  • The LED lights don’t indicate the exact delay time
  • The controls are a bit touchy, necessitating you to use the knobs lightly

This pedal gives you the freedom to create a wide range of delay effects. Along with impressive-sounding delay time and feedback levels, it also gives you the option to create true stereo delay and to adjust the true feedback level. A number of reviews have actually noted that TC Electronics provides the best delay pedals.

5. Mooer Reecho

Our rating: 8 / 10

Mooer Reecho

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Pros:

  • 24-bit/192KHz high-quality circuitry
  • Up to three seconds of delay
  • True bypass design
  • Very responsive, light-weight pedals with a sturdy aluminium enclosure

The Mooer Reecho has an easy-to-operate design, providing a setup which is convenient and easy for both beginners and experienced guitarists. With 24-bit/192KHz high-quality circuitry and an easy-to-operate design, you can create the coolest echoes and long echoes of sound.

The pedal has true bypass design, which ensures your original signal's integrity while keeping the pedal in the circuit. This ensures the original signal's integrity, retaining the original signal while the pedal is in the circuit. What's more, this device provides you with a fast response, allowing you to get to that echo faster, along with an optical control knob.

Overall, this pedal is perfect for your delay effects needs, offering you simple controls with a user-friendly design at an affordable price. More so, this effect pedal has soft click controls for an ultra-realistic echo regardless of the level of delay you want to achieve. Thanks to its stereo input and output, it is a great solution for any guitarist or bass player.

6. Tom'sline Engineering Digital Delay Pedal

Our rating: 7 / 10

Tom'sline Engineering Digital Delay Pedal

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BLUE – NEW! Aphex Punch Factory Vintage Analog Experience Delay DIGITECH RPS1 – BEST CHOICE AnalogMan Bi-Compressor and Echo Reverberator Sentient Delay MASAO NEUNG Earthquaker Devices Fuzz Master General COSMIC DELETE The Harbinger Deluxe Pedal (Made in USA) DOD Meatbox Aphex Aural Exciter

Unless you’re playing in your bedroom or a foam party, chances are that you’ll want to use a delay pedal from time to time.

Delay pedals can turn your basic guitar into an instrument far more complex, and you’ve no doubt heard some great delays in songs. Whether you’re a bedroom shredder looking to create electronic effects, or a metalhead looking to create stadium-filling walls of sound, delay pedals let you do just that.

7. JOYO D-SEED Multi Pedal Dual Channel Digital Looper Pedal Multi-Effect

Our rating: 7 / 10

JOYO D-SEED Multi Pedal Dual Channel Digital Looper Pedal Multi-Effect

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Pros:

  • Looper effects
  • Numerous delay types
  • Built-in tuner
  • Big LCD display
  • Can record your own loops and phrases

Pedal Digital Delay Guitar Pedal with Tempo Control, Supports Up to 7 Delay Modes (Standalone or with a PC), Covered by 1-Year Seller Warranty.

8. DigiTech Acoustic Guitar Effect Pedal

Our rating: 7 / 10

DigiTech Acoustic Guitar Effect Pedal

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Pros:

  • Ultracapacitor circuit for enhanced playing time
  • Spring and touch sensitivity
  • Controls for rate, depth, level, delay, feedback, and effect regen
  • Pedal design reduces strain on your foot while playing

If you’re looking to delay your guitar sound, this is the pedal for you. If you want a digital delay sound, this is definitely not the pedal for you. This is a nice, simple unit that adds that perfect touch of delay to your tone for some serious psychedelic rock n’ roll.

You’ve got controls for delay time, depth, level, and feedback. You can also control this unit via an expression pedal for some serious delay pumping action, or just to give yourself a break. The expression pedal controls the delay time, but you can also connect your own expression pedal if you want to control any of the other parameters.

9. DELAY LAY LAY Analog Delay Effect Pedal by Deadbeat Sound

Our rating: 6 / 10

DELAY LAY LAY Analog Delay Effect Pedal by Deadbeat Sound

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Pros:

  • Three possible modes to choose from: Tape Echo, Analog Delay, and Reverse.
  • Cry baby like sound that is great for a variety of musical styles.
  • Gain, Intensity, Feedback, and Delay control knobs as well as an EQ control knob to fine tune your sound.
  • True bypass effects pedal that doesn’t change the signal path when the pedal is not engaged.
  • Comes with a 1 year warranty and high-quality footswitch allowing you to turn off the effect when you don’t need it.
  • Not too costly for the quality of pedals offered

We are giving this very affordable and quality delay pedal a top spot on our list because we just love its easy to use features. It has a unique sound for such an affordable pedal. It can also be used for a variety of different music genres.

The ability to switch between three work modes – Tape Echo, Analog Delay, and Reverse – is the biggest benefit of this pedal. You can switch from one mode to another for creativity and versatility.

The pedal features a tone control knob allowing you to fine tune your sound. It has a gain knob to adjust the input level as well as a feedback control knob to tune the delay time.

10. Electric Delay Guitar Effect Pedal Aluminum Alloy Housing

Our rating: 6 / 10

Electric Delay Guitar Effect Pedal Aluminum Alloy Housing

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Pros:

  • A mix between a digital delay and a spring reverb effect makes it unique from the others
  • It’s affordable
  • Suitable for both beginner and professional guitarists
  • The feedback and effects can be adjusted for various tones
  • Works well and does exactly what it is supposed to
  • Perfect for songs that require delay-based effects
  • The click when adjusting the delay can also be drowned out with the sound of the music.
  • The design is sturdy and durable
  • It’s moderately light and easy to carry around

Cons:

  • The pedal may feel a bit on the heavy side, especially for those used to a lighter pedal
  • The pedal can sometimes be a little tricky to use, especially the switches
  • Some may not be able to tell the difference between the tone when the pedal is off and when it is on. It may feel too similar for some and so others might prefer something a bit more noticeable.

There are two ways to look at the GV26LC. You can see it as a very versatile pedal that has a beautiful design and provides a playable experience. And you can also see it as a very simple pedal that has just enough abilities to satisfy a beginner.

11. Donner Wave Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal Super Mini

Our rating: 6 / 10

Donner Wave Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal Super Mini

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Pros:

  • It produces clear and great-sounding delay
  • It fits into small spaces and doesn’t take up a lot of pedal board space
  • Easy-to-read display
  • Quality built and good-looking design

Cons:

  • Some people have experienced static in the signals after a while
  • The rubber pads can easily slip off because they’re not attached to the housing

If you’re looking for a good delay pedal for small gigs or for your practice at home, the Donner Wave super mini analog delay is a top recommendation.

This delay can go beyond what you’re looking for. It’s precise and functional, giving you warm and enveloping sounds that’ll give you a nice delay even in a live performance.

You can choose between 100ms and 400ms time range, plus the tone knob can let you add more liquid to your sound or make it more cutting. The volume knob lets you adjust how you want your delay to sound. There’s also the tone knob and range selector for getting a better sound.

12. Electro-Harmonix Memory Toy Analog Delay

Our rating: 5 / 10

Electro-Harmonix Memory Toy Analog Delay

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Pros:

  • Portable but is sturdy and suitable for outdoor playing
  • Different controls for delay and repeats make it ideal for performing
  • Control over repeat volume makes it useful for low volume playing
  • 2-style modes allow for lo-fi effects
  • Delay time is adjustable
  • Can be powered by an AC Adapter
  • Can be powered by 9-volt battery
  • Relatively small size, does not make much noise, and is not too heavy
  • Has a true bypass
  • Sturdy case

Cons:

  • Has a smaller delay time of about 600ms
  • Not cheap

The Electro-Harmonix Memory Toy Analog Delay is an analog digital delay pedal, which allows you to set up delay and repeats with precision. It also has low-fi mode and decay modes. It’s a great option for those who want a mid-range delay since it costs considerably less than higher end models.

The sound is not metallic and has an analog tone, which gives the delay the vintage sound you expect. There are tons of effects on this pedal, which gives it the flexibility to be used in a wide variety of genres with just one pedal.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Which is the Best Boss delay pedal?

Firstly, the BOSS DD-20 Giga Delay is the brand's most affordable and will be a solid choice for anyone on a budget. Not only is it affordable, but it comes with up to 5 seconds of delay time and DD-20's delay modes include Tape, Jet, and Modulation. Past this, there are the DD-5, DD-7, DD-20, DD-500, and DD-6 which all include Tap Tempo.

How do I choose a delay pedal?

Any delay pedal is going to have some fundamental features that make it unique. Of course, the features included with each pedal are going to differ greatly. So, the first step is to narrow down your search to the features that you require.

Many indie artists are perfectly happy with the minimal delay pedals on the market and can find enough features to suit their needs.

When choosing a delay pedal, remember that you get what you pay for. This is especially true with delay pedals. Typically, the more you spend, the more robust the features, and the better sound quality and range.

If you are in the market for:

  • a huge range of unique delays and distortions
  • more than a few unique effects
  • no delay limits (measured in seconds)
  • multi-head syncopation
  • a digital or analog delay
  • tape machine emulations
  • a looper or tap delay

Do I really need a delay pedal?

We're not going to pretend that the endless waves of delay pedal types can be neatly categorized (they can't). Still, if we had to simplify the whole thing, we can put them into two categories: compact pedals and multi-effect pedals.

Compact pedals are the simplest form, which you can find plenty of on the market. These typically mimic the 2-3 knobs you're used to from your amp or old delay pedal. They're normally designed so that the user can put a delay time on one knob and then a level on another. The other 2 knobs are set at your preference, but they're often fixed.

Multi-effect pedals are where things get a little more complex, but there are still a few more standard parameters to be aware of.

What does a delay pedal sound like?

Play a simple chord progression on your guitar, and then add a bouncing delay to it. The effect can be used to delay a single note, as well as produce a type of arpeggio sound. One of the more common modern uses for the delay pedal is producing a sound similar to the pedal steel guitar.

The BOSS DD-7 Digital Delay gives you plenty of effects that you can use to create a variety of cool sounds in a live or recording environment. You can use one of the presets that fits your style of music, or you can switch things up a bit and start creating your own sound.

Conclusion

With over 30 years in the music industry, Richie Kotzen doesn’t need an introduction. His distinctive rhythm and lead guitar sound has been a standard for generations of guitar players.

That’s why when it comes to delay pedals, Kotzen’s go-to is the Pork Loin. The Pork Loin delay effect pedal has been around since the 80s and is still going strong. It’s almost as iconic as Richie’s playing. Now Richie is in a league of his own.

For more details, read on.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
MXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay Guitar Effects PedalBest OverallMXR Carbon Copy Analog Delay Guitar Effects Pedal
Donner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True BypassBudget PickDonner Yellow Fall Vintage Pure Analog Delay Guitar Effect Pedal True Bypass
Boss DD-7 Digital Delay PedalUpgrade PickBoss DD-7 Digital Delay Pedal