Ibanez FL9 Flanger Review
- Pros: This flanger produces a high quality analog sound.
- Cons: The settings might be a bit tricky for beginners.
- Overall: The Ibanez FL9 Flanger offers all the features a guitarist may desire in a flanger.
Have you ever wondered while, for example, listening to Love by The Smashing Pumpkins how to achieve the effect that the song starts with? The answer may lie in a lemon yellow stompbox by the name Ibanez FL9 Flanger. However, have in mind that this is not a plug-n-play type of a pedal, so do not expect to achieve this effect overnight. To discover this flanger’s full potential, arm yourself with patience, be ready to experiment and do some twiddling, and it will surely become one of your favorite effects.
The Ibanez FL9 Flanger has four knobs that allow you to shape the sound you desire to achieve. It includes controls for Speed, Width, Regen and Delay Time. The top right knob – Regen(eration) adds overall coloration and depth. The Width control regulates how far out of phase the effected signal is. With high width one gains a much deeper sweep, the harmonic interactions between the two signals increase. The bottom right knob – Delay Time ranges from sweeping to a deep, expansive effect. As it is stated in the manual itself “the delay time control does not work when the width control is fully CW”. The footswitch is very solid and quite easy to turn on and off.
This is an analog flanger which is very versatile, it has a warm smooth organic sound. What I enjoy most is playing it through the clean channel on my amp; the creamy sound simply floats through the space calling you to create a melancholic atmosphere by strumming your guitar. On the other hand, by playing the flanger with an overdriven amp, you create a massive, rolling sound that reminds of a jet plane woosh.
A curiosity about the Ibanez FL9 Flanger is that when you turn the Width knob either fully clockwise or fully counterclockwise, you will nearly always produce an unvaried noisy sound, similar to microphony. After a few seconds, with subtle modulation, it fades out. The entire effect doesn’t last long, and I find it rather interesting.
All things considered, this is an awesome pedal which has all the features a guitarist may expect to find in a flanger. After using it on and off for a decade (obviously, it has withstood the test of time unlike the plastic battery cover which broke years ago), I would recommend The Ibanez FL9 Flanger to all fans of a high-quality analog sound.