LEL CZ - Digital Delay

LELs were the first normal stompboxes made in USSR. They had normal guitar jacks and even a 9-volt socket - same format as BOSS pedals. The footswitch pad reveals a battery cavity underneath.
The company still exists! It's website for some unknown reason claims the company was established in 1992. Then who produced LEL effects and rack units in the 80's? Was it Colorsound or Electro-Harmonix? Anyway, the website gives us some backgound information on the company. It makes guitar effects, rack effects and small mixers with integrated Alesis digital effects modules(!). The headquaters is located in Moscow, on the Lower Krasnoselskaja street.

In general, it must be said that some of the LELs sound interesting and useful. The main problem is that the company uses third-grade components, which results in an unacceptable noise amount. In addition, all the pots and jacks tend to break, produce noise etc. The construction seems to be rugged - a heavy metal box does protects the inner components, but if you touch input jack you immediately hear a monstrous crunch, way louder than maximum output volume of the effect. It's a pain to use these things live since after you plug everything you'd better stay away.

The unit on the big picture is an older version with Russian labeling. The small pictures are from ebay, with a newer labeling in English. At first we could not understand what "CZ" means, but numerous guys from Russia sent us mails with explainations. Here's the story: "Digital Delay" in Russian goes like "Cifrovaja Zaderjka", and while in Russian "CZ" makes sence, it was lost when it was transferred to another language. In fact, there was no chance to convert it into "DD" (digital delay) since the DD pedal already exists - it's "Drive/Distortion".

LELs usually feature two circuits with a possibility to choose one of them with a small switch (no footswitch option, but you can attach something long, like a pen, to it, and try to operate the small switch with your foot). Here two options are chorus and reverb (no "delay" option?), which probably stand for long and short delay time. Three lower knobs (input, feedback and level) affect both circuits, while the upper knobs relate to the chosen circuit only.

Sound sample:
David Kuri from Germany sent us this sound file plus the following explainations:

The Chorus Mode adds a very small delay with a chorus effect (you can see a time knob on many chorus pedals, here it's the delay knob). The depth knob controls the depth of the effect. In Reverb Mode a very strange effect, more like a tremolo is added to the delay signal, the delay time is way longer.

Input controls the input volume, Feed B. the number of delays and level the volume of the effect, so if you need a really loud delay or rather a nice silent one.

I've recorded a sample for you, the settings are like this:
1. Reverb, depth 0, rather long delay
2. Reverb, depth 0, medium delay the way I like it :)
3. Chorus, depth 5, delay half
4. Chorus, depth 8, delay full (very short for full time...)
5. Reverb, depth 5, delay half
6. Reverb, depth 9, delay half, woohoo this is odd!


Ivan Novikov
Dani (Sotona)
Krists (original LEL picture)
Albert Pomortsev
Shlykov Ilja
and Arthur from Minsk, Belarus.

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