Vintage EHX Small Stone, is it really worth it?

Discussion in 'The Stomp Box' started by ymfarh, Aug 6, 2014.

  1. ymfarh

    ymfarh NEW MEMBER!

    Aug 6, 2014
    Okay, so a while back I bought a 1975 EHX Small Stone Phase shifter on ebay. It cost me 200 bucks. It sounds good but ever since I got it I've been finding more and more reasons to sell it and buy a Nano Small Stone.
    1. There is no light on it! In a live setting where I smear 3 other pedals on to my sound I'm always trying to figure out if it's on or off or being frustrated by how my tone just isn't right, especially since the vintage units sound very transparent.
    2. And this one's a biggy: Volume drops! I mean, this is a real bugger, I often find myself getting lost in the mix because of it's volume drops (especially with the color switch, my favorite setting, up) or having to turn it on with a volume booster in front of because it drops so bad it which is really annoying. Note: I have installed True Bypass and tried putting it between different pedals in the chain.
    3. The build - The button is tough and noisy, and it is obviously fragile and built poorly.

    So now here's is my question: Everyone says the Nano stone just "Doesn't sound like the vintage one's". But is that really true? I saw one of my favorite local guitarists using one and he is an effect genius. They also sound good online. So what do you guys think? Is the extra 130 bucks plus all the bugs worth the sound? Sadly I don't have a local guitar store that are selling one so the only way I can find out is by listening online and getting recommendations.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2014
  2. Bill

    Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Mar 16, 2003
    Hopefully someone can respond who has both. Or maybe someone does a comparison online.

    My first pedal was a 70's Small Stone back when they were new. My brother bought it for me for Chanukkah. Only thing I know is it sounds miles better than a similar vintage Phase 100 that I have.

    P.S. I just noticed it's your first post. Welcome to the TDPRI!
  3. SwampFuzz

    SwampFuzz Tele-Holic

    Dec 19, 2012
    This Side of the Gates
    Welcome to the forum!

    IMHO, EHX pedals aren't worth it. And since you can't try them out, just keep on doing your research. Here are some other suggestions that may help you for reference points:

    Budget ($75-150):
    Malekko Omicron Phase
    MXR 45 or 90
    Boss Phase Shifter
    Maxon PT999

    High end ($200 +):
    Red Witch

    I don't know how shipping to and from Israel would cost, but if you buy one from a store like Musician's Friend or Sweetwater instead of fleabay, at least you'll have the option to return it if you don't like it.
  4. WaylonFan76

    WaylonFan76 Poster Extraordinaire

    Oct 22, 2008
    South Lousiana
    I own several phasers ( vintage Small Stone like yours, MXR 90...) and my favorite by far is the MXR EVH Phase 90 ( the one with the Van Halen design ). Way above the rest. It also has a "script" button to get you the vintage script logo phase 90 tone, which is the one I use. It's sparkly, complex and not volume drop at all, of course.
  5. richey88

    richey88 Friend of Leo's

    Jul 28, 2009
    philly suburbs
    Are you dead set on EH? Tons of good stuff out there. I'm currently rocking a Joyo Vintage Phase. Sturdy, no volume loss, very script-y. Around $30. Just saying.
  6. analogmike

    analogmike Tele-Meister

    May 9, 2003
    Connecticut, USA
    The Nano does not sound quite as good as the large sheet metal versions. Even the discontinued reissue of the big ones sound great. The big ones can be modified for true bypass/LED/volume drop etc. The other phasers listed are great (I use an old Phase90) but the EHX has that spacey swishiness that others don't have.
  7. czech-one-2

    czech-one-2 Friend of Leo's

    Oct 3, 2008
    East of you
    If you can solder, there's a simple two resistor swap that'll fix the volume drop.
    But 200 bucks seems like alot for an old small stone. You could get an Orange ROSS [my personal favorite] for half of that.
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