In 2021, every pedal brand has a looper and by now we’re all fully acquainted with what they are, what they do, and how they can add to your playing rig. Electro-Harmonix has perhaps a broader range of looper pedals than other brands, from the basic Nano Looper 360 right up to the spaceship dashboard 95000 model. Sitting in the middle of the line-up is the Electro-Harmonix 720 Stereo Looper, packing in 12 minutes of looping time, the ability to store 10 loops, a couple of neat effects and high quality, uncompressed stereo in and out connectivity.
If you’ve ever used an EHX pedal you’ll know the build quality is top-tier. Encased in a solid metal chassis, this is a pedal that will survive the rigours of touring life. A seven-segment display provides information on which of your saved loops is playing, while three LED lights on top of the case indicate which mode you’re currently in - playing, recording, or dubbing. Two footswitches provide control over starting the recording and stopping it; we found having a dedicated stop switch was extremely handy, and it also doubles up as the on/off switch for the two included effects. These are looper-specific effects too - reverse loops the chosen loop backwards, while half-speed drops the recording down an octave and allows you to use your guitar to play a pseudo-bass sound to jam over.
Electro-Harmonix is making a big deal of the fact the audio you record is captured and played back in high quality, uncompressed fidelity so all those fancy reverb pedals you’re using will retain every last sample of shimmer and decay. There’s also a trails switch that lets you decide whether you want the loop to fade out naturally or cut out completely when you hit the stop switch.
Connectivity-wise, there are stereo inputs and outputs, which is always a nice feature to have particularly for use with stereo inputs like synths or pedals. There’s also a slot for an external footswitch for control over your stored loops, boosting its credentials as a performance looper. Unfortunately, there is no option for MIDI connection, either via 5-pin or over USB, as neither are catered for here.
This is a shame, as even on lower-priced pedals nowadays you can find USB connectivity for transferring drum loops, for example, while MIDI sync would have enabled the pedal to stay tight with external drum machines and samplers.
Those are all ‘nice to have’ features though, and may have been expected from loopers geared towards vocalists, but the EHX 720 isn’t that pedal. This is a looper made by guitarists, with guitarists in mind. It’s a practice tool, and performance enabler and a songwriter’s best buddy.
Electro-Harmonix 720 Stereo Looper review: Verdict
As we said earlier, players looking to integrate a looper into their setup are spoiled for choice at the moment. So why choose the Electro-Harmonix 720 stereo looper? For us, the high-quality audio makes it the ideal choice for anyone with an already-stuffed pedalboard, who wants to ensure those pedals are given the chance to breathe. The two included effects are both useful in their own right and can unlock some amazing happy accidents in your compositions. And, being an EHX pedal, overall build quality and reliability is top-notch. If it’s specific connectivity you’re looking for, like MIDI sync, then this isn’t the pedal for you. But for anybody looking to add a classy sounding pedal with heaps of potential to unlock your creativity, the EHX 720 is a very good choice indeed.
Electro-Harmonix 720 Stereo Looper review: Specifications
- Recording time: 12 minutes
- Loop storage: 10 loops
- Bypass: Buffered bypass
- Controls: Loop level, loop select, effect controls, record/dub footswitch, stop footswitch
- Effects: Reverse and Half-speed
- Connectivity: Stereo I/O, external footswitch, 9v DC input
- Contact: Electro-Harmonix (opens in new tab)