Monday, September 1, 2008

Yamaha FC7 Expression Pedal - Barry’s Mixed Reviews

Yamaha FC7 Expression Pedal Review

Like many other reviews say, this is one of the very best expression pedals around. Nice long pedal sweep range (super for organ work or other delicate control), super solid design, stable, doesn't move around. Fully adjustable. You can even easily and securely attach multiple pedals together. And for only $38 incl shipping ( you simply can't go wrong.

Only negative might be the cable being hard wired to the pedal. If it were a simple plug-in cable, if damaged it could easily and swiftly be replaced with another in a live gig situation. The way it is should it get damaged on stage you'd better be fast and handy with a screwdriver and solder iron.

Really, it does! To work perfectly on Roland, Nord, M-Audio, and other keyboard brands, you just need to reverse the polarity on the FC7 Pedal jack. An adapter jack is preferred here so that you can easily use your FC7 with any keyboard regardless its polarity requirements. (If you're not up to wiring your own adapter, spend a few bucks on the FC7X or FC7X-II adapter cable mentioned in other reviews - - and your Yamaha FC7 Pedal will then work fine with all keyboard brands.) **Update: it appears this item is no longer available.

You could reverse and re-solder the wiring right at the pedal or at the plug end, but then your FC7 would no longer work with Yamaha gear. Once you have an adapter jack you’re always set for any keyboard. (Would be super nice if Yamaha would just put a polarity switch right on the pedal like some other manufacturers. You could of course wire up and install a polarity switch of your own and thus avoid the need for an adapter jack altogether.)

Here's another very easy way to reverse the polarity using two stereo y-jack adapter cables together:

Reversing the connections as shown in the photo, reverses the polarity of the pedal.

You can also "y-jack" the Yamaha FC7 pedal into two (or more?) separate keyboards and control each at the same time from the one pedal.

**Note: If controlling a Yamaha and Roland together (or other kbds which require opposite polarity), the polarity adapter jack mentioned above goes on after the y-jack, then into the Roland or whatever. If you put the polarity adapter before the y-jack then the Roland will respond fine but your Yamaha kbd won't respond correctly because it will now be receiving reverse polarity.

And did I mention, the pedal is adjustable for sitting or standing playing positions? Simply loosen a screw underneath, reset the angle, re-tighten and you're done.

Also, there is a spring-loaded "solo" crescendo feature which you can enable and adjust likewise. When enabled, press hard down on the spring loaded final throw of the pedal for your solo or crescendo boost, then when you're done ease off with your foot and the pedal will return precisely to your preset max.

Bottom line, the Yamaha FC7 Expression Pedal is simply the best expression pedal you can buy for the money. Bar none. Enjoy!

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