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Strymon El Capistan dTape Echo Pedal

Tape echo delay pedal with tap tempo, sound on sound, 3 modes, stereo I/O


Product Description

When Strymon decided to develop an effects pedal that delivers the sound and feel of their favorite tape echo machines, they knew they must relentlessly study and faithfully recreate every last nuance. They spent months in the Strymon sound design labs with an intense focus on capturing the warm, saturated, distinctive qualities of tape echo machines. The result is the hand crafted Strymon dTape technology. Utilizing a ridiculously powerful SHARC DSP, every drop of processing power is harnessed.

The Strymon El Capistan provides three different tape machine types in one, each with three unique modes. With ten parameters to tweak, you get extensive control over tape quality, machine health and tone shaping. Go from the sound of a pristine, studio-quality tape machine to the heavily fluctuating sound of a machine in need of service. Get the full bodied sound of fresh tape all the way to the gnarled qualities of worn out tape. Because it's DSP driven, you get a range of tape experiences unattainable with a traditional tape machine. All of this without the headaches of tape machine maintenance and repair!


  • Hand crafted dTape algorithms deliver meticulous and nuanced recreations of tape echo systems
  • Three tape machines in one: Fixed (one fixed playback head), Multi (multiple playback heads), and Single (sliding record head)
  • Each tape machine has three modes for extremely flexible echo options
  • Five tape adjustment and tone shaping knobs: Time, Mix, Tape Age, Repeats, Wow & Flutter
  • Five "hidden" knobs for extensive tone tweaking: Tape Crinkle, Tape Bias, Low End Contour, Spring Reverb, ±3 dB Boost/Cut
  • Sound on Sound mode with instant tape splice and bulk erase. A built-in tape-style looper!
  • Stereo output
  • High impedance mono input (internal jumper enables selectable TRS stereo input)
  • Expression pedal input with selectable control over any knob parameter
  • Connect our optional Favorite switch to save a favorite preset
  • Tap Tempo and Bypass foot-switches
  • Ultra low noise, high performance 24-bit 96 kHz A/D and D/A converters
  • 115 dB typical signal to noise
  • Analog dry path for a zero latency dry signal that is never converted to digital
  • Premium analog front end and output section
  • Super high performance DSP in a compact form factor
  • True Bypass (electromechanical relay switching)
  • Selectable "trails" mode with high quality Analog Buffered Bypass
  • Press and hold Tap for instant infinite repeats
  • Powered with a standard 9V center negative DC supply, 250mA minimum
  • Strong and lightweight gunmetal gray anodized aluminum chassis
  • Crafted with love in the USA

Product Specifications

Condition New
Width 4 in
Height 4.5 in
Depth 1.7 in
Input Connectors 1/4-inch TS
Output Connectors 1/4-inch TS
Power Supply Included
Power Consumption 250 mA

Product Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars.
Review Count (5)

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I love delay pedals. This really does the job that my tube echoplex did. I run it in stereo but it sounds great in mono too. Nothing like it, worth the price. Makes me super happy when I use it I own two, I joke.

By Dan on December 2, 2020

The best pedal I’ve purchased. I really mean that! Been touring and recording since 1990.
Thanks, Daniel

By Daniel L on September 24, 2020

Sonically, it has a really rich tonality, some cool functionality overall. Really great for slap back/short delay time effects. However, the repeats/mix knob can't really provide the truly washed out long feedback you would want for dub style echoes. I found that there was a point around 2 o'clock on the mix knob where it goes from mostly dry with echoes in the background, to losing your entirely clean signal and just having the wet signal. Much prefer the Boss RE-20 to truly capture tape echoes.

By Andy C on September 5, 2019

The El Cap is everything you want from your classic Echoplex without all of the headaches. The repeats are so perfectly tuned. I feel like most companies just tune the repeats to be dark and call it tape echo. That's not what tape echo sounds like. They are slightly modulated with a nice "ping" to the first couple of repeats before they start to decay and darken. So musical. This can obviously be controlled with the Wow and Flutter and Tape Age. The multi-head setting is cool for tapping into some more rhythmic settings. The Sound on Sound feature is great for some Frippertronics or Les Paul action. This is the absolute industry standard for capturing the tape echo sounds and feeling in a pedal. UA should make a plugin of it!

By Edward M on June 23, 2017

This is one fantastic pedal. No longer does one need to hunt down legacy tape delays on the used market, in questionable condition; now you can get all those sounds and more in a reliable, rugged pedal from Strymon. It faithfully captures the tones of vintage tape delays and what's even better, you get to choose whether your "device" is in new condition or road worn and in need of a tuneup (which represent some of the most iconic, classic sounds on recordings). You get complete control over tape flutter, tape age, and so many other parameters that it will absolutely blow your mind. Great pedal. You need one !

By Steve on September 28, 2014

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