Equally suitable for electric guitarists and bass players, the Source Audio One Series L.A. Lady is a distortion pedal which provides classic overdrive tones by means of 56-bit DSP architecture, 24-bit AD/DA converts, four easily accessible knobs, and lots of under-the-hood features. Drive, level, bass, and treble controls are offered, as is a three-position toggle switch which gives you three different voicing options right out of the box. Classic mode delivers the sound of an overdriven Marshall amplifier, while the Crunch mode gives you a more aggressive distortion of Source Audio’s own design. The Smooth Circuit, on the other hand, provides a saturation similar to a Mesa/Boogie amplifier, with boosted highs and lows for a beefy, precise, and sustaining tone.
These are just the effects provided straight out of the box. Play around with the included Neuro Mobile App for iOS and Android, and you’ll be able to edit a whole host of parameters. Extensive parameter editing enables you to customize your own signature tones, and what's more, save them to different positions of the toggle switch. You can also load in tonal presets from the Kingmaker Fuzz and Aftershock Bass Distortion pedals; if you wanted to, you could run an overdrive, a fuzz box, and a bass distortion pedal from different positions of the toggle switch—effectively giving you three stompboxes in one enclosure. With connections for MIDI control, expression control, and Hot Hand control (in which you use a proprietary ring-like device to modulate effect parameters straight from your picking hand), you can achieve even more real-time manipulation of effects.
Dual 1/4" input and output jacks allow for all sorts of stereo and mono routing possibilities. The architecture for this pedal also allows for parallel and hybrid/series distortion paths, all handled internally. For a dive into other features of the pedal, kindly delve into the features section. A 9 VDC power supply is included with the pedal.
Key Features at a Glance
Compact Design: The durable, anodized-aluminum housing has a slim profile, a small footprint, and sturdy hardware that can withstand the rigors of the road.
Universal Bypass: True bypass or buffered bypass? The decision is yours. The L.A. Lady features high-quality signal relays for true bypass and transparent buffers for analog bypass.
Stacking: Stack two independent distortion circuits in series (or in parallel), all within the stompbox.
Dual 4-Band EQ + Low Cut: Two independent parametric EQs are included in the L.A. Lady, allowing for fine tone control. An optional low cut filter tightens up the low end for bass players.
Flexible Routing: The L.A. Lady is equally at home in a mono rig or a stereo rig. A variety of routing modes such as True Stereo, Cascade, Parallel, Dry Sidechain and External Loop allow the L.A. Lady to harness the true power of stereo signal chains. It also works like a traditional, mono overdrive pedal.
Preset Saving: Save your favorite sound by pressing and holding the footswitch.
Neuro Technology: The Neuro App opens allows you to access extensive parameters, different effect types, and access to the Neuro Community, including free presets from artists and other users. The Neuro Hub can store up to 128 presets for the L.A. Lady, easily recalled with a MIDI controller. You can also download any effects for the Kingmaker Fuzz and Aftershock Bass Distortion and use them on the L.A. Lady Overdrive.
Deep Control Set: Beyond the four knobs on the face of the L.A. Lady are many additional parameters. The Neuro App provides access to the inner workings of the Overdrive effect for advanced users who want to create a unique signature sound.
Noise Gate: A built-in adjustable noise gate, accessible from the Neuro App, helps remove unwanted noise.
Clean Path: The clean signal can be mixed in with the overdrive as desired, perfect for bass players who want to hold down the rhythm section with a clean low end.
MIDI Control: All of the L.A. Lady’s parameters can be accessed and controlled using MIDI via the Neuro Hub or USB. Class-compliant USB-MIDI allows the L.A. Lady to work as a plug-and-play device with recording software running on Mac and Windows, and the MIDI Learn feature makes control mapping simple.
Controls at a Glance
Level Knob: Controls the overall output level.
Bass Knob: Controls the level of the bass frequencies in the drive circuit.
Treble Knob: Controls the level of the treble frequencies in the drive circuit.
Effect Switch: Selects between the three basic Overdrive effect types–Classic, Crunch, and Smooth. You can also store your own presets into the pedal and access them through this switch.
Footswitch: Enables or bypasses the Overdrive effect.
Control Input: The 3.5mm Control Input port connects to external control devices such as the Dual Expression Pedal, Reflex Universal Expression Pedal, Neuro Hub, and Hot Hand Motion Controller. The latter facilitates the use of Hot Hand technology to control aspects of the pedal directly from a ring-like device worn around your finger.
1/4" I/O for Neuro App Data: In addition to using the L.A. Lady’s dual 1/4" instrument input and output jacks for stereo routing, you can use the 1/4” Input 2 and Output 2 jacks as data connections for the Neuro App. The ring contact on Input 2 acts as a data connection for the Neuro App, and you can connect it to your mobile device using a stereo TRS cable with a 1/4" termination point. Input 2 can also accept daisy-chained Neuro data from another Neuro-compatible pedal in the chain, provided that a TRS cable is used. The audio signal (if applicable) will be on the tip contact of the plug, and the Neuro App data will be on the ring contact. Output 2, on the other hand, can pass said data from the L.A. Lady to the next Source Audio effect in your signal chain. You can daisy-chain the Neuro App data regardless of whether Output 2 is configured to output audio or not. Connect Output 2 to the next device’s Neuro App Data input (usually Input 2) using a stereo TRS cable with a 1/4" termination. The audio signal (if applicable) will be on the tip contact of the plug, and the Neuro App data will be on the ring contact.
More Possibilities Covered in Depth
Series/Hybrid Processing Capabilities: By selecting the MONO IN/OUT WITH CASCADING CHANNELS routing option, and then bringing up the clean mix level on channel B, it’s possible to create a series/parallel hybrid sound.
LoRetain for Clear Low End: LoRetain is a technique used by Source Audio to maintain a solid low end even with high amounts of distortion. This is particularly useful for bass players or extended-scale guitar players (7-string and 8- string guitars) that need to maintain a strong fundamental while keeping high drive on the upper frequencies. LoRetain is available as a control independent of the parametric EQ and low cut filter.
Voice Control: Each overdrive/fuzz/distortion circuit features a VOICE control that is a gradual timbre adjustment affecting the overall character of the sound. It generally affects the midrange in subtle ways, so a high VOICE setting will generally provide a midrange boost, whereas a low VOICE setting will provide a midrange cut. Many different sounds are available using the VOICE control, which can be controlled via the Neuro App.
Noise Gate: Overdrive, fuzz, and distortion effects introduce a lot of gain into the signal chain, and this gain amplifies not just the guitar signal, but also any noise present in the system. As a result, overdrive, fuzz, and distortion effects tend to increase the amount of noise in the signal chain, especially when the guitar is silent or playing at very low levels. To correct this problem, the L.A. Lady includes a built-in noise gate to help reduce noise and preserve the guitar signal. The noise gate consists of a traditional gain reduction circuit as well as a filter gate, which works by attenuating high noisy frequencies when necessary. By default, the noise gate is not active. The volume gate and filter gate can independently be enabled and configured using the Neuro App. The gate will automatically be linked in stereo modes or independently configured in stacking and parallel modes.