Today’s Vintage Pedal of the Week is highly coveted by many. It’s the Digitech XP-300 Space Station! Back in the early days when Digitech was just beginning to make waves with the Whammy series, the company rolled out the Xpression series which was a series of various effects with an expression pedal. Amongst them was the XP-100 Whammy Wah, the XP-200 Modulator, the XP-300 Space Station, and the XP-400 Reverberator. Before those big combination/all-in-one pedalboards became commonplace, we had Digitech forging the path with the Xpression series, as they tried to accommodate multiple effects into a single enclosure.
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The XP-100 Whammy Wah was just a rebranded Whammy pedal with an additional wah function. The reception of the wah feature varied wildly. The XP-200 Modulator got pretty wacky as it contained choruses, reverbs and flangers. The XP-400 Reverberator wasn’t as particularly popular as the other pedals, it had a slew of reverb functions but nothing particularly noteworthy. Digitech tried to throw everything they could and then some into these pedals. Some of the effects and functions didn’t always necessarily work well with each other, but for that reason you could definitely pull some weird and unique sounds from these pedals.
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The Space Station however, had such a unique blend of effects. The effects ranged from totally straightforward volume swells to orchestra emulation, to video game bit noises to total psychedelic weirdness predating the Earthquaker Devices Rainbow Machine! It even featured some basic Whammy pedal features, all of this in one pedal! The Digitech Space Station quickly became a pedal musicians didn’t know they needed.
The XP-300 Space Station has 40 separate presets in four different banks! The four presets are: Synth, Warp, Alien, and Sonic. You can also set 9 presets yourself instead of scrolling through all 40 presets. The last of the presets is “Volume” which turns the Space Station into a perfectly capable volume pedal. The bypass switch activates the built in tuner, which while convenient wasn’t as accurate as a standalone tuner. The Digitech Space Station is a pedal that needs to be heard to be believed.
The popularity of the Digitech Space Station was latent, and unfortunately the demand for them is as high as it’s ever been with these pedals shooting up to 700 dollars. Even more unfortunate was the limited supply of the unique microchip that was the heart and soul of these pedals making a reissue of these pedals incredibly difficult.
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There is hope yet, the elusive microchip that’s present in all of the Xpression series pedals has allowed for some clever modding. Pedal modders and hackers figured out that since the same chip exists in all of the Xpression pedals that they are all the same pedal hardware wise! So engineers out there have managed to incorporate all four of the Xpression pedals into one with some clever modding and rewiring. If you can manage to find any of the Xpression pedals, you could effectively turn them into a Space Station pedal! The benefit being that some can be found much cheaper than the Space Station. Our friend Nick Reinhart managed to get a Space Station modded Xpression pedal, and he demonstrated this mod on his pedalboard run through:
The Digitech Space Station can be found in all the usual places, eBay, Craigslist, Reverb etc. But if you manage to find another one of the pedals from the Xpression series (for a fraction of the price as the Space Station), you could send it to a modder and they can turn it into a Space Station!
That concludes this week’s entry of Vintage Pedal of the Week! If you think you’ve stumbled onto a one of a kind pedal that no ones heard of, or if there’s a vintage pedal you want to hear more about, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org