Electro Harmonix Ravish Sitar

Effects pedal

Electro Harmonix has been well known for decades for their innovative and affordable guitar effects. With the Ravish Sitar Effects Pedal you can craft a sitar from your electric guitar. Such attempts have already been made, but on the whole the sound has often been limited to a sort of chirping ... somehow similar but far away from the real thing.

The Ravish comes pretty close to the sitar sound. Lead strings and sympathetic strings can be controlled separately, and two expression pedal inputs allow you to bend the pitch of the lead voice and control the volume of the sympathetic strings simultaneously. It really has to be heard to be believed!

  • Sitar emulator
  • Polyphonic lead sitar voice
  • 9 Presets
  • Knobs for Dry, Lead, Sympathetic, Lead, Sympathic Mode/Preset
  • Preset switch
  • Bypass switch
  • Main out and Sympathetic Out
  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 120 x 145 x 64 mm
  • Incl. power supply (9.6 DC-200)
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Sound samples

 
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  • Demo 2 (Indie ra Ghandi)
  • Demo 1
  • Demo 3
  • Demo 4

Further information

Effect Types Sitar Emulator

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Enlightenment in a box , OM !

Bharat, 13.12.2013
When I came across this pedal on Electro Harmonix webpage, I jumped off from my seat in utter excitement, I couldn't work the whole day I was rest less to see this pedal. I am a big fan of famous sitar player Ravi Shankar and his daughter Anoushka Shankar, I always loved the sound of sitar and also because I am from India, everyone cracks lame stereotype jokes "Oi you are from India you should be playing a sitar instead of a guitar" , hehehe. Well guess what now I have an answer to them :D.
Anyways, Thomann had the lowest price for this pedal (~160 Euro), so I ordered it, it was delivered in a week, I opened the box, and on the 1st leaflet of the box it says "Jai Guru Deva", I laughed so much in happiness. "jai Guru Deva " means "Praise the Guru who is also god" in Sanskrit. I took of early from work, so that I can spend the whole evening having fun with this pedal, plugged it in, and Zinggggg the sound of sitar, and there was a genuine smile on my face.

To make best use of this pedal you have get a slight understanding of how a sitar works,
This pedal is highly tweakable you can get quiet a range of sounds from it, you can program and save the patches, it allows you to store 10 presets and one dynamic mode. You can use footswitch to toggle betwwen the patches, it has two outputs, one is the main out put and another is the sympathic strings output, google for "tanpura" , you will understand.
If you hold down the preset foot switch, it will generate a awesome drone sound of the tanpura, this is something similar to the "infinite reverb" feature on EHX-Cathedral pedal, I just love it, now feed that drone sound and the main Sitar sound into a stereo delay and then into a stereo Reverb, and use two amplifiers one for each channel, and right there my friend you will see the gates of "Moksha" your brain will slip into a vortex , you will feel enlightenment. :D
This pedal goes very good with delay's and reverbs, I have used it with TC-Flashback delay, and BYOC-Reverb. Also you can use distortion pedals infront of it, it case you want it to sound more louder.
I have used this pedal even in Amplifier FX-Loop, works like charm. It can handle both line and instrument level Amplifier FX loops. Actually I like it more in the FX loop than in front of Amp, and I've come across some folks who like this pedal straight into a DI-box instead of an Amp, you should try it out to see what works for you.

Overall I love this pedal. But yes of course it doesn't sounds like a real sitar, but still I love it's sound.
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Great for Ambient Music

Bobber, 08.08.2017
The Ravish Sitar guitar pedal from Electro Harmonix is in a category completely of its own. Basically what it does is to create two additional voices to the dry guitar signal. One is a synthesized emulation of the melody strings of an Indian sitar (referred to as lead). This voice is unison with the dry signal unless an expression pedal is used to pitch bend the signal (explained below). The other is a synthesized emulation of the sympathetic or resonant strings of the sitar (referred to as sympathetic) which can either losely follow the melody being played or remain static depending on how the pedal is used. The three signals, dry, lead, and sympathetic, can be mixed by the three leftmost knobs on the pedal, to create an impressive amount of sonic variation. The three rightmost knobs are for adjusting the timbre of the lead and sympathetic, as well as managing presets and getting into the more detailed functions of the pedal.

The Ravish Sitar has so many functions and uses that it would be beyond the scope of a user review to try to explain them all. Instead I would like to write a bit about my own experience with the pedal and how I use it live. First the sound itself: The lead does NOT sound like a real sitar, but rather a kind of filtered synthesizer sound that can be interesting in itself. However, the sympathetic sound is actually quite close to the real thing and can also be used as a tanbura-like drone either by pressing and holding the preset footswitch while playing or by using an expression pedal in the drone input (the latter also controls the level of the drone). Both these methods will produce a rich drone while the dry/lead can play melodic lines on top. The pedal accepts a second expression pedal in the pitch input, which will then function as a whammy pedal, although only pitch shifting the lead signal and only upwards (up to an octave). I find this less useful for embellishing melodic lines, but I sometimes use it for pitching the lead a fifth above the dry signal in a whole section of a song, giving some interesting melodic sounds as well as chord possibilities. The dry/lead and the sympathtic have dedicated outputs and can be processed separately, or they can be summed in the pedal (I keep them separate).

I find both the drone and the pitch shifting useful for playing ambient music (which I do), and I will use the pedal for several songs in a set. For rock, pop, jazz etc. I think the pedal is more of a "novelty" effect to be used for 1-2 songs in a whole set. That's just my opinion, some might find more use for the synth-like lead than I do.

Apart from the lead not really sounding like a sitar, my only complaint is that the footswitches are too noisy, which is problematic for quiet music in smaller venues. A thing I found problematic at first: The sympathetic output sends the dry signal when the pedal is bypassed. Now I find that to be an advantage, however, as the pedal effectively functions as a splitter. It has to be taken into account when you make your setup, though.

In any case, the pedal is lots of fun to play around with and it gives a lot of inspiration and possibilities. I highly recommend it.
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