Winner of the coveted Guitar Player Magazine Editor's
Pick Award, the ToadWorks Phantasm is the world's first 9V battery operated, opto-analog dynamic phaser with a Center-Axis control pedal (whew!). With three basic modes of operation, stunning clarity and an uparalleled feature set, ToadWorks Phantasm is truly in a class of it's own.
The end product of three years of development, Phantasm offers studio-quality phasing at a fraction of the cost. In fact, no other battery-powered phaser comes close to the range of features available on the Phantasm.
Simple to use, ToadWorks Phantasm is a sophisticated phase shift effect, with a smooth operation and low noise floor that will amaze the most die-hard digital fans. Trust us - this phaser's set to stun.
Phantasm utilizes vactrols (opto-isolators) both in the signal and control path, resulting in remarkably smooth, ridiculously quiet operation, and the fact that it runs on 9V batteries makes it all the more miraculous. Phantasm sets the standard for noise floor in analog phaser pedals, proving that analog phasers don't have to be noisy.
Phantasm is 100% pure Analog phaser. Go from a light cream
smoothie to hopped-up, caffeine laden grind with a swift turn of the Feedback knob for that swooshy 70's sound. Go slow, go fast. Make the sweep window wide, make it narrow. Go shallow, go deep. Control the sweep and depth dynamically. Re-center the whole sweep window, if you feel like it. Phantasm does all this and more, and no other analog phaser pedal on the planet can make the same claim. Period.
Phantasm incorporates simplicity of design with a full-figured feature set, the centerpiece being the attack controlled modes. With Phantasm's Attack Controlled Depth (ACD) and Attack Controlled Sweep (ACS) you can increase OR decrease both the Depth and Sweep based on how hard you hit the strings. Each mode has it's own activation switch and sensitivity control - hit the ACD switch, and it will activate the ACD mode (in this mode, the Depth control setting serves as the start point), providing envelope-controlled depth on demand. It’s the same with ACS - it enhances the LFO operation (in this mode, the Rate control setting serves as the start point), and the sweep becomes variably controlled by your signal amplitude. Both dynamic modes can be used together for a truly unique sound. Additionally, both dynamic strategies can be used in forward (play soft:less effect, play loud:more effect) or reverse (play soft:more effect, play loud:less effect) modes, and each Sensitivity knob is bi-directional (Full clockwise=Forward, full counter-clockwise=Reverse, 12:00 is the null setting). It even has a control input, in case you want to control the envelope follower with an external (or uncompressed instrument) signal.
All phasers begin and end their shift cycle at a fixed point, and regardless of the width of the sweep window, the shift axis remains fixed. With Phantasm's Axis control, ToadWorks has changed all that. The Axis control sets the relative “starting point” or “center” from which the LFO and ACS sweep the phaser. The Axis control has an adjustment range from absolute minimum to absolute maximum phase offset. The LFO sweeps the phaser back and forth equidistantly from the Axis setting and ACS sweeps the phaser “forward”, toward the top (T) or “backward” toward the bottom (B), relative to the Axis setting. With the Width control at minimum and ACS off, the Axis control is effectively a “manual” sweep control and can sweep the phaser over the entire range.
ToadWorks Phantasm is hand wired, by people, not machines. From our high quality 3PDT switches to the custom made enclosures and knobs, each component is the finest available, making ToadWorks pedals the most well-built and reliable effect pedals in the world.
Operation and Controls
ToadWorks Phantasm is a phase shift effect with dynamic capabilities. In addition to the standard Depth, Rate and Width controls, Phantasm offers attack-based dynamic depth and sweep. While the Phantasm has all the features common to other phasers, it offers more fundamental control of the effect. The original instrument signal is split into two signal paths, the Clean and Shifted signals. The Shifted signal differs from the Clean signal in two important ways: 1) it has been delayed (or “phase shifted”) for a very tiny period of time and 2) the amount of that delay is changing over time.
Depth - Controls the amount of phaser effect present in the final mix. Fully counter-clockwise is minimal effect while fully clockwise is maximum
effect. When in ACD mode, this control sets the “starting point” from which Depth is affected by instrument dynamics (attack). ACD mode
aside, this control is common to many phaser effects.
ACD Sensitivity - When ACD mode is engaged (via ACD stomp-switch and associated LED), this control adjusts how much Depth is affected by instrument dynamics (attack) relative to the Depth control setting. 12:00 o'clock (straight-up or center position) is the minimum setting - as if ACD is turned off. Rotating the knob clockwise from center causes the depth to increase with attack and counter-clockwise from center causes depth to decrease with attack. This control is unique to Phantasm. Note that effect depth is affected by ACD Sensitivity relative to wherever the Depth control is presently set. For example, if Depth is set to maximum (full CW), turning ACD Sensitivity clock-wise from center will have no effect since depth is already at a maximum. However, turning ACD Sensitivity CCW from center will decrease depth and at maximum CCW will cause depth to sweep to minimum with attack.
Rate - Adjusts the frequency or speed at which the LFO sweeps the phaser back and forth between phase offsets, equidistant relative to the Axis control setting. Adjustment range varies from a slow crawling sweep (full CCW) to a fast “worble” (full CW). This control is common to virtually all phaser effects.
Feedback - This control is sometimes referred to as “regeneration” or “resonance” on other phasers and adjusts the “sharpness” of the phasing sound using both positive and negative feedback, with 12:00 o'clock as the "null" setting. Turning the knob clockwise from center will increase the positive feeback, and turning the knob left from center will increase the negative feedback.
Width - This control adjusts the LFO sweep width or just how far the LFO sweeps the phaser from one phase offset to another. At maximum setting (full CW) the LFO sweeps the phaser between the absolute extremes of phase offset while a minimum setting (full CCW) will effectively turn the LFO sweep off and only ACS or manually turning the Axis control will sweep the phaser. Note that Width only affects how far the LFO will sweep the phaser and does not affect the operation of ACS or the Axis control.
ACS Sensitivity - When ACS mode is engaged (via ACS stomp-switch and associated LED), this control adjusts how much and in what direction instrument dynamics (attack) sweep the phase offset relative to the Axis control setting. 12:00 o'clock (straight-up or center position) is the minimum setting - as if ACS is turned off. Rotating the knob clockwise from center causes a “forward” phase sweep with attack while counter-clockwise from center causes a “backward” phase sweep. Note that ACS sweeps the relative to wherever the Axis control is presently set. For example, if Axis is set to maximum (full CW), turning ACS Sensitivity clock-wise from center will have no effect since the Axis control already has the sweep sitting at its absolute maximum and it cannot sweep “forward“ any farther from this point. However, turning ACS Sensitivity CCW from center will cause a “backward” sweep and can in fact sweep the phaser all the way to minimum.
Axis - The Axis control sets the relative “starting point” or “center” from which the LFO and ACS sweep the phaser. The Axis control has an adjustment range from absolute minimum to absolute maximum phase offset. The LFO sweeps the phaser back and forth equidistantly from the Axis setting and ACS sweeps the phaser “forward”, toward the top (T) or “backward” toward the bottom (B), relative to the Axis setting. With the Width control at minimum and ACS off, the Axis control is effectively a “manual” sweep control and can sweep the phaser over the entire range. NOTE: This control is dual-function - it can also be used in Manual Sweep mode. To manually sweep the phaser, just turn the Width control fully counter-clockwise, and the Axis control becomes a "Manual Sweep" control.
In - The input jack is clearly labeled on the right side of the pedal. It is designed for use with 1/4" phone plugs only.
Trigger - The Trigger jack is clearly labeled on the right side of the pedal. This is the "side-chain" input, and it is connected directly to the dynamic portion of the circuit. If a signal is present in the Trigger jack, the effect dynamics will cease to be controlled by the signal present at the In jack and will instead be controlled by the amplitude of the signal present at the Trigger control. It is designed for use with 1/4" phone plugs only.
Out - The output jack is clearly labeled on the left side of the pedal. It is designed for use with 1/4" phone plugs only.
Switches - The switches are located directly on top of the pedal, they are used to turn associated functions on and off (Note: Phantasm is wired for "True Bypass." This means that when the switch is in the "off" position, the original signal is routed around the effect circuit, resulting in no signal loss or coloration). The On/Off switch activates the phase-shift effect, the ACD switch activates the Attack-Controlled Depth circuit, and the ACS switch activates the Attack-Controlled Sweep circuit.