“The hype surrounding it is legitimate”: Diamond Pedals resurrects its Tame Impala-approved Vibrato

 Diamond Vibrato.
Diamond Vibrato.

Diamond Pedals has brought back one of its most sought-after stompboxes, the Diamond Vibrato. The OG cult classic, which in recent years has change hands for eye-watering prices online, has been rehoused, refreshed and wholly improved.

It has also sold out “immediately” upon its release. But fear not. Those who missed out will still have a chance to grab one, with Diamond Pedals now taking preorders for a second batch.

The big question is whether they will feature NOS Panasonic MN3007 BBD chips, or current production MN3007s. Diamond Pedals says it is scouring the planet for more NOS chips and will issue an update on how successful it has been. Either way, the Diamond Vibrato is back, and it might be a smaller guitar effects pedal but it comes with even more features.

The OG Diamond Vibrato was launched in 2006 and caught the imagination of players everywhere. Its analogue true-pitch vibrato and suite of chorus sounds was incredible on electric guitar, worked similarly well on bass, and was immortalised on Tame Impala’s 2012 album Lonerism, on which Kevin Parker used it liberally for all his strings, giving them that seasick wooziness that only pitch vibrato can give you.

You know the rest. Diamond Pedals disappeared. The vibrato become a pedalboard unicorn. SolidGoldFX bought Diamond Pedals in December 2022 and brought the brand back from the dead, with Diamond building pedals in SolidGold’s Montreal facility but operating independently as two separate brands.

Diamond Pedals announced its first new pedals in May last year, but there was no vibrato pedal. As Greg Djerrahian, CEO of SolidGoldFX and Diamond Pedals, explains, there was a good reason. Namely, a lot of R&D, and a lot of prototyping.

“Our goal was to create a pedalboard-friendly version that retains all the magic of the OG Vibrato while addressing certain drawbacks of the original big box pedal,” says Djerrahian. “We improved design of the compandor/expander by borrowing and tweaking the circuit that was originally designed for the Memory Lane Jr. The new design allows for less distortion, better clarity, a touch more high-end response, increased noise reduction, no popping, and pre-trimmed chips, eliminating the need for recalibration of the Vibrato.”

Diamond Vibrato
Diamond Vibrato

While the breadboard was out, there were some other features thrown into the mix. Diamond upgraded the power supply so you can run the vibrato between 9V and 18V DC, allowing players to “alter the response and the sweep” of the effect. Run it at 18V for a pristine clear sound. Run it at 9V and it mimics the High mode of the original Diamond Vibrato, with more colour and depth.

Djerrahian encourages players to get creative with their pedalboard power supply and run it between 12 and 15V in search of a sweet spot. There is also a new Jazz mode, which gives players a darker voicing of the effect. And there’s a secret mode; hold down the footswitch and you can have a momentary or latching speed doubler.

Diamond Pedals says all current orders, no matter where you placed them, will have the NOS BBDs. It is TBC whether the next roll out will have them but that is the brand’s intention. Priced £/$279, the Diamond Vibrato is available now. See Diamond Pedals for more.