The FrantaBit is a digital bit crusher and sample rate reducer. It offers a wide array of glitchy digital tones, lo-fi crunchiness, video game synth sounds and buzzsaw harmonics. It is designed to be extremely powerful, but simple to use and dial in.
The FrantaBit includes an expression jack which can be assigned to bit depth, sample rate, both, or clean/effect mix – expanding performance possibilities in a live environment and in the studio.
New and improved for 2016: The FrantaBit has been retooled with a new expression attenuator knob and improved expression response, allowing the user more detailed control over the expression sweep.
Samples: This control allows the user to lower the sample rate of the analog-to-digital conversion from 32khz down to <100hz, creating so-called aliasing effects – frequencies from the instrument begin to “fold” back downward, creating new harmonics and subharmonics. The frequency response is lowered as sample rate lowers, but instead of simply removing higher frequencies, they are mirrored back downward, to create strange harmonies and overtones.
Bits: From a pristine 24 bits down to a gated, fuzzed-out 1 bit, the Bits control introduces digital distortion artifacts, as the instrument’s amplitude is quantized into progressively fewer volume “bins”. With this type of distortion, the instrument actually becomes cleaner as it gets louder – the opposite of traditional harmonic distortion. Dynamic fuzz tones, digital destruction, and chiptune synths can be dialed in with this control.
Mix: Controls the relative volume of the clean and effect signals.
Volume: Controls overall volume.
Exp: This knob acts as a limiter on the expression pedal, setting how far the expression pedal can shift the parameter(s) it's controlling.
Expression Mode rotary switch: This 4-way switch allows the user to assign the expression pedal to any of the following:
+: Controls both Samples and Bits at the same time
Degrade/Obliterate: This switch controls the behavior of the sample rate reduction. Degrade mode is true digital sample rate reduction, as described above. Obliterate mode emulates analog aliasing effects – a harsh, harmonically rich “pixellated” sound, much like square wave ring modulation, which creates synthy atonal waveforms.
Low-noise, low-distortion active components chosen for excellent audio fidelity.
Measures 4.7″ x 2.5″ (12cm x 6.3cm).
Runs on industry-standard 9 volt DC center-negative power supply. 85mA current draw. Relay-based true bypass.
All jacks are located at the top of the pedal to save pedalboard space.
Learn more about the construction of IE pedals here.