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Audiothingies Doctor A

Reverb & Delay Processor With MIDI & CV Inputs
By Robin Bigwood

Audiothingies Doctor A

If you're seeking a performance-friendly effects processor with a top-notch signal path, this might be just what the doctor ordered...

Audiothingies are a small French company who sell directly. Until now, they've mostly offered small and affordable, but surprisingly capable, sound-generating boxes, such as their Micromonsta wavetable synth, so their new Doctor A marks an interesting change of direction. This delay and reverb combo's price puts it in 'boutique' territory, and Audiothingies justifiably boast of the high-quality WIMA and Nichicon UES-series capacitors used in the signal path. Notably, though, the Doctor A isn't aimed at quite the same users as the offerings from, say, Strymon or Eventide. It's not a guitar pedal; there are no stomp-style switches to operate with your foot. And the stereo Ins and Outs, +19dBu audio headroom, control voltage connections and distinctly Moog-ish knobs, suggest it may have most to offer to synth players, or those wanting a compact, portable alternative to a 19-inch rack unit for a mixer's aux loop.

Physically, it's nice and compact (17.4 x 12.3 x 6 cm) and the metal-ended composite-body construction keeps it light (less than 600g) but tough. Power is via a supplied 9V DC adapter, with a centre positive plug (rather than the more common centre negative). Buyers can choose between a gold-plated PCB material front panel or (for a €36 premium) an aluminium panel version. I tested the cheaper of the two, and whilst the PCB material does potentially mark more easily it looks like that'll pose no problem in the longer term.

Examination

A stereo digital delay and multi-algorithm reverb run in parallel alongside an analogue dry signal path. Both effects have their own low- and high-pass filter pair, and there's a send knob to get the delay's echoes into the reverb.

The delay has four modes: a crunchy and unusual eight-bit Lo-Fi (with no attempt to dither away quantisation errors), the cleaner-sounding Classic and Spacey ('tape-vibe') 12-bit varieties, and a ping-pong with variable left-right time ratio. Delay time goes to a maximum of 1000ms and...

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Published April 2020