Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo

Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo

Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo
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Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo
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Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo

The El Capistan dTape Echo effects pedal actually delivers the sound and feel of your favorite vintage Tape Echo. In order to faithfully recreate every last tonal nuance, Strymon sound design labs relentlessly focused on capturing the warm, saturated, distinctive qualities of these vintage machines. The result is their hand-crafted, ''dTape technology'', which utilizes a ridiculously powerful SHARC DSP that aims every drop of processing power towards the task at hand.

El Capistan provides three different tape machine types in one, each with three unique modes- Fixed Head, Multi Head and Single Head. Ten tweakable parameters allow for extensive control over tape quality, machine health and tone shaping. Go from the sound of a pristine, studio-quality tape machine to the heavily fluctuating sound of a machine in need of service. Get the full bodied sound of fresh tape all the way to the gnarled qualities of worn out tape. Because it's DSP driven, you get a range of tape experiences unattainable with a traditional tape machine. All of this without the headaches of tape machine maintenance and repair!

Soundclips of the Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo:

A taste of everything

The first part uses the Single tape head, then Mode is changed from B to A at 0:15 and you can hear the machine double the tape speed. The second part changes machines to Fixed, adds more repeats and cranks up the Wow/Flutter/Crinkle for a dirtier sound. The Time knob is reduced to min starting at 0:42. The repeats are maxed at 0:49, and the Time knob is turned to max starting at 0:51.

Saturated wash

Single Head, Mode A with no Tape Crinkle, max Low Contour for a very high-passed repeat sound, ala magnetic drum units. High repeats generate a nicely saturated wash behind the guitar.

Dark and dirty

Fixed, Mode B. Maximum Delay Time results in slowest tape speed, resulting in the most exaggerated Wow/Flutter and Crinkle influence. This is a sick machine.

Dirty slap

Fixed, Mode A for a slapback on a distorted guitar. The natural warmth created by the slower tape speed allows the delay to sit in the mix nicely.

Power guitar

Single Mode A. Using the Tape Age knob, the bandwidth is reduced and a natural echo is created from the cranked power chords.

Wow and Flutter

The Single Head, Mode B machine. By varying the Wow & Flutter, and Tape Crinkle controls from minimum to maximum in four increments, the range of 'machine health' possibilities is highlighted.


Fixed Head, Mode B. By adding a generous helping of Spring Reverb, we achieve a trippy reggae sound with regenerating repeats that continue to build as the rhythm continues.


Fixed Head, Mode A. A great machine for sci-fi, the short repeats and varying tape speed can create some classic spacey sounds. In this clip a single note is played, and El Capistan does the rest.


By overdubbing the rasta and spaceship clips, we get rastaship!


Multi Head, Mode C. With minimum Tape Bias, a regenerative brightness occurs offsetting the high-end roll-off from the playback head aperture. This along with maximum Low End Contour removes low frequencies from the repeats. The baritone's sound remains coherent with high repeats as the notes descend into the lower register. The spring reverb is employed for maximum ambience.

Worn out tape

Multi Head, Mode B. A good amount of Wow & Flutter along with a fair amount of Tape Crinkle. Tape Age is set at about 70% for a relatively worn out tape sound.

Magnetic drum wash

Multi Head, Mode C. Tape Age set to minimum for a new tape sound. Bias is set at 75% and Repeats are cranked to get some regenerating oscillation in the background. Low End Contour is set at max, rolling off all of the low end, giving more of a magnetic drum style.

In need of service

Fixed Head, Mode B. Wow & Flutter and Tape Crinkle are maxed, representing a very tired and sick tape echo machine. This one is in need of service!

Old tape

Fixed Head, Mode B. Tape Age is set at about 75%, indicative of older more worn out tape. Low End Contour is set at 75% as well, rolling off a lot of low end in the repeats. Wow & Flutter and Tape Crinkle are set at 50%.

Better days

Roland Juno 6 running into El Capistan. First short passage is in Bypass, then the pedal is engaged. Fixed Head, Mode B. Tape Age is set at about 75% for an older tape sound. Low End Contour is set at about half to roll off some low end. Tape Crinkle and Wow & Flutter are set at about 75% as well, for the sound of a tape machine that has seen better days.

Tape echo arpeggio

Roland Juno 6 running into El Capistan. First short passage is in Bypass, then the pedal is engaged. Single Head, Mode A. Tape Age, Wow & Flutter and Tape Crinkle are all set around half.

Tape with drive

Fixed Head, Mode B. Running into an amp with a bit of drive and grit. Tape Age and Low End Contour are set at 75%. Wow & Flutter and Tape Crinkle are set at 50%. Repeats are cranked at the end to generate some runaway oscillation. Time knob is set to max, then to minimum, then to maximum again.

Sound Design:

  • Hand crafted ''dTape'' algorithms deliver meticulous and nuanced recreations of tape echo systems.
  • Three tape machines in one: Fixed (one fixed playback head), Multi (multiple playback heads), andSingle (sliding record head)
  • Each tape machine has three modes for extremely flexible echo options
  • Five tape adjustment and tone shaping knobs: Time, Mix, Tape Age, Repeats, Wow & Flutter
  • Five "hidden" knobs for extensive tone tweaking:Tape Crinkle, Tape Bias, Low End Contour, Spring Reverb, +/- 3dB Boost/Cut
  • Sound on Sound mode with instant tape spliceand bulk erase. A built-in tape-style looper!

Ins, Outs, Switches:

  • Stereo output, high impedance mono input
  • Expression pedal input with selectable control over any knob parameter
  • Connect our optional "Favorite Switch" to save a favorite preset
  • Tap Tempo and Bypass footswitches

Audio Quality:

  • Ultra low noise, high performance 24-bit 96kHz A/D and D/A converters
  • 115dB typical signal to noise
  • Analog dry path for a zero latency dry signal that is never converted to digital
  • Premium analog front end and output section
  • Super high performance DSP in a compact form factor


  • True Bypass (electromechanical relay switching)
  • Selectable "trails" mode with high quality Analog Buffered Bypass
  • Press and hold Tap for instant infinite repeats
  • Powered with a standard 9V center negative DC supply. 250mA minimum
  • Strong and lightweight gunmetal gray anodized aluminum chassis
  • Crafted with love in the USA
SKU: mm2046