Best Loop Pedals for Guitar: Top 5 (You’ll Sound Huge) – 2018 –

Reviews

Best Loop Pedals for Guitar: Top 5 (You'll Sound Huge) - 2018 -

We love loop pedals. Aren't they the business?

Playing with a guitar loop pedal is by far one of the most rewarding pastimes you as a guitar player can indulge in on your ax. They can literally transform your skills and make you fall in love with playing all over again you'll have that much fun.

A guitar looper gives you the ability to create anything from a basic jam track with a few chords and 1 simple melody, to huge multi-piece arrangements.

And achieved all on your own. Sweet.

Which is the best loop pedal out there though? We have 5 top loopers coming right up for you.

Warning: It takes skill to craft the right arrangement when using a loop pedal and skill to nail your performance. So before we dive in and show you our best loop pedal recommendations, here's our top 5 tips for how to properly use a loop pedal (so you can avoid sound dreadful).

How To Sound Good Playing With a Loop Pedal: Top Tips

  • Prepare -It can be hard to get your head around the technique of playing with a loop pedal at first. Beginners should evolve to using a looper after first playing with a metronome. Next try using a jam track as getting impressive sounding results from a loop pedal relies on your tight rhythm playing & tight timing.
  • Timing - If you can't play in time, when you try to layer then loop your guitar parts your loop won't match at the end and beginning points. It won't sound pretty my friend. To ensure your loop points are bang on, count the measures of the bar as you play. Always count yourself in: 1,2,3,4 1= press loop pedal + begin playing.
  • Plan - It's no good playing a low bass line melody then following it by another 2 low bass parts. Everything will sound awfully muddy very quickly. Think of complimenting frequencies. Think; a clean low end single note riff layered with bright shimmery chorus effect chords, followed by crunchy distortion pedal treated melody lines. Gorgeous.
  • Practice - Creating beautiful masterpieces on a loop pedal won't happen overnight. You have to practice at honing you timing and playing skills to become a looper maestro. Ultimately it comes down to this - have fun and go experiment. 

Your only job now? Choose the loop pedal that takes your fancy from this list...

TC electronic Ditto X2 Looper Pedal

Loved by guitar legends such as Paul Gilbert the Ditto X2 loop pedal sounds sublime and has some neat tricks up it's sleeve to boot.

Play your loops in reverse, half-speed & combine if you're feeling it. You can really create some huge atmospheric creations with this looper. 

The Ditto X2 is by far the easiest to use looper on our list. All it's controls - record, start, start, stop overdub and fx are accessible via the two sturdy footswitches. 

Built like a tank and with 24 bit audio quality to satisfy any audiophile along with the true bypass and analog-dry-through all mean your loops (and guitar playing) are going to sound special.


Best Bits

  • Record time - 5 minutes with unlimited overdubbing
  • Memory Presets - n/a
  • Power - 9V Batteries or AC power supply (sold separately)
  • USB Connection - Yes
  • 24 bit audio sound quality
  • Internal dip switch lets you swap looping switch functionality from loop/play/overdub to loop/overdub/play
  • Half-speed and reverse effects 
  • FX control switch can also be set as a dedicated stop switch
  • Backing track library from JamTrackCentral included

 

You’ll love:  TC Electronic are proud of the optimized headroom and True Bypass. What does this mean to you? Your loops will sound amazing with optimal tonal integrity and no loss of tone.

You might not dig: Juicy on the old 9V batteries meaning you're best advised to get an AC power supply if you're not using a multi supply on your pedalboard.

TC Electronic Ditto Demo

BONUS RECOMMENDATION

Beginner guitar player and want a basic no frills looper that's plug in and go? Check out the TC Ditto X2's baby brother, the TC Ditto Looper. Simple, no fuss, press one button and you're good to go. Checkout the latest price HERE.


Boss RC-3 Loop Station Pedal

The Boss RC-3 is fantastic for practicing, recording and overdubbing  guitar parts. Be it rhythm or lead, simple melodies or complex harmonies this solid industry standard looper is your man.

Save your loops in no less than 99 memory slots, meaning you'll never forget that killer melody again. Sharpening your Improvising skills is made really easy with this Boss looper because it's easy to control and laid out logically. Just remember to practice to get the best out of the pedal.

The USB 2.0 compatibility makes your life easy by allowing you to import and export WAV audio into your computer.

You get handy built-in drum patterns on the RC-3, a feature any premium looper worth it's salt should have. To make your life easier, the stereo I/O means you can connect any stereo device you wish also.

Best Bits

  • Record time - 3 hours
  • Memory Presets - 99
  • Power - Batteries or AC power supply (sold separately)
  • USB Connection - Yes
  • 1/4" A and B input jacks, 1/8" mini auxiliary input jack
  • USB 2.0 port lets you import/export WAV audio
  • Rhythm guide with real drums (perfect for practice)
  • Perfect for guitarists and bassist

 

You’ll love: The drumbeats are a fantastic feature which will make your jamming so much more fun.

You might not dig: A few users reported getting a perfect timed loop was tricky. This likely was down to driver error rather than the pedal. See out Top Tips for how to use a loop pedal properly at the top of the post.

Boss RC-3 Demo


man Solo XT Guitar Looper

The JamMan Solo XT is a rugged & quality stereo looper. Perfect for layering chords and riffs, the JamMan is a handy stompbox sized pedal meaning it will snuggly fit onto your pedalboard and look right at home.

You have the ability to plug the looper into your FX send/return in your amp, or If you're not using a modelling amp the footswitch plugs into the standard input channel also.

There is zero playback lag when switching between adjacent loops, so you can layer away till till the cows come home.

You can save a loop whilst the looper is still in playback, and your sounds are saved as high quality uncompressed .wav files. The JamMan is just the ticket then for home, live or studio use.

A nice added option is being able to move up/down between patches & stop control with the optional extra FS3X external footswitch (see Recommended Extras at the end of the post).

Best Bits

  • Record time - 35 minutes with added 16 hours storage on microSD card
  • Memory Presets - 100 internal + 200 external
  • Power - Batteries or AC power supply (included)
  • USB Connection - Yes
  • 1/4" A and B input jacks, 1/8" mini auxiliary input jack
  • PS0920-DC Power Supply included
  • USB 2.0 port lets you import/export WAV audio
  • JamManager Loop Librarian software to store your loops

 

You’ll love: The huge storage space you get when you stick a microSD card into the pedal.

You might not dig: Some glitches with the JamManager Loop software for a tiny handful of users reported.

Digitech Jamman Solo Demo

Vox Lil' Looper Pedal

You get two independent loops along with 12 cool built in effects with the Vox Lil' Looper fx pedal. Effects range from phaser to stutter to crunch. Think loop-multi-fx pedal and you're there.

Beginner guitar players and seasoned players alike will find the Lil' looper easy and intuitive to use thanks to it's straight forward layout.

There's an instrument and mic XLR input so If you're a songwriter you'll love messing around with the effects this pedal creates on both your guitar and voice. 

The loop pedal has a handy metronome - vital to help you nail perfect sounding loops. And with Vox's emphasis on the Lil' looper being the perfect companion for live playing & jamming you'll have a blast playing with it. (Just try to ignore the fact it's name sounds like it's an RnB rapper)


Best Bits

  • Record time - 90 seconds on 2 independent loops
  • Memory Presets - n/a  
  • Power - 6 x AA Batteries (included) or AC power supply (not included)
  • USB Connection - No
  • Audio Input: Phone plug type x 1
  • Switch: GUITAR (Monaural: Unbalanced) / MIC (Monaural: Balanced)
  • Audio Output: Line Out (Monaural, 1/4"), Headphone (Stereo, 1/8")

 

You’ll love: The The Loop Quantize feature which helps you get your loops tight and on the beat.

You might not dig: No save preset like most loopers. Loop on the fly with this fella!

Vox Lil' Looper Demo

With True bypass, multiple loop banks and a simple intuitive design- you'll love the clear sound of your loops through the Electro-Harmonix 720. 

The reverse and half speed bonus effects on the looper will make your jamming and songwriting sessions ridiculosly fun. And with the modest price tag, you'd be hard pushed to find a better loop pedal for your needs.

Start and stop recording with a single click. Undo and redo. How about fading out your loop so it doesn't abruptly stop? Done.

Step up your guitar playing level up a notch, buy yourself this quality looper frm EH.

Best Bits

  • Record time - 12 minutes
  • Memory Presets - 10
  • Power - 9V Battery or 9.6V DC power supply (included)
  • USB Connection - No
  • Undo and redo controlled by optional foot-switch 
  • Reverse and 1/2 time available
  • Loop 2 instruments


You’ll love: Stereo in/out which allows you to record two instruments at once

You might not dig: The lack of USB connection

Electro-Harmonix 720 Demo


Recommended Handy Optional Extras


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