If you have an AxeFx – or any other gear that accepts standard expression pedals like the Kemper KPA – one thing you really need is a reliable and flawless expression pedal. I have tried many over the years, and I am now using the Mission EP-1. But I have also used the Roland EV5 and Roland FV500-L. So I will share my thoughts about these Pedals with you!
This is a standard pedal used by millions of keyboard players all over the world. It is THE expression pedal. It works without a problem with the axe – but there are 2 things I don’t like about it:
- it is made out of plastic
- it has a fixed cord
Number one is probably more a matter of taste – I did not manage to break it, but it alway gives me a bad feeling if I have piece of plastic on the stage and especially under my feet. So I went to upgrade to the BOSS FV500L.
This pedal is solid as a rock. You probably could not damage it if you wanted to, as it is made out of aluminum. Not really heavy, suited for big feet and also usable as a standard stereo volume pedal. At first I was really happy with it, but then there are also 2 things that I discovered over the 3 years I used it (2 of them, you will see why…)
- The included poti fails after about one year or 60 gigs (this is my experience and that of some people I talked to). Of course a good music store will probably fix it for free – but it is anoying if you are on tour, like i was, and you have weird noises coming out of your gear. I had to buy a new one right away in a local music store to be able to use my stuff again.
- If you move the pedal 100%, it will only send data to the device on about 60-70% of the way. So if you use it for wahwah or subtle volume changes, it sometimes feels weird.
That is really sad considering that I really liked the haptics of this pedal. But after reading some forums and hangin’ around on facebook groups, I decided to get rid of it and get the Mission EP1
The Mission Pedal is very well crafted, looks cool in the red color it came in and is perfect. Almost… I have to say that it is the best pedal I had by far, just be warned, there is one single thing that is a little anoying:
- If you play on a stage where the musicians move or jump a lot, the pedal will sometimes change its position by itself. This is bad if you are using it as a volume pedal, but especially if you use the “auto-engage” feature of the axefx. So if it moves, my wahwah would be switched on. I am in the process of finding out if I can adjust the screws so it will be a little harder to move.
I do not think this “flaw” is because of bad craftmanship – it is logical a a pedal that handels so well and is heavy (what really helps when you do subtle volume changes) would move by itself – those are the laws of physics. I will keep you posted about my progress.
This “moving” has only occured on about 1 out of 25 gigs – so it is not a game changer. Maybe some of you have an idea how to fix it?
So, these are my experiences with expression pedals – what are yours?