For over 50 years, producers and engineers have relied on Eventide for both bread-and-butter and cutting-edge experimental effects. The Eventide H90 is a multi-effects pedal capable of producing everything from “always on” effects like overdrive to completely unconventional sounds. In today’s review, we’ll take a closer look at the Eventide H90 and whether it stacks up as a guitarist’s pedalboard dream.
The Eventide H90 Harmonizer Multi-Effect Pedal Is a Top Quality Stomp Box
Eventide is a household name in professional audio. There’s little to doubt in terms of build and sound quality. We’ll dig into some of the finer details momentarily, but given the brand’s historical track record, the H90 is a pro-grade piece of equipment. Perhaps this is best evidenced by the price tag, which certainly isn’t cheap. However, given the amount and quality of effects housed in the H90, many users could consider this the be all, end all for their sonic needs.
The H90 Takes Inspiration from the H8000 & H9000
The current generation H9000 is a professional rack-mounted multi-effects processor for studio recording or live sound. It contains a dizzying 1600+ algorithms including Eventide classics and all of their new innovations as well.
The H90 is a much more scaled-back version of this monster, though that doesn’t mean it’s any less formidable. With 62 algorithms, including timeless Eventide phaser, flanger, and SP2016 reverb, the H90 is more than capable of producing a huge variety of sounds and tones. Other algorithms consist of overdrive, delay, tremolo, chorus, pitch shifting, and loads more. The Eventide H90 epitomizes the multi-effects unit.
Eventide H90 vs. H9: What’s the Difference & What’s New?
To be fair, the H90 was never meant to be a replacement for the H9. Instead, it’s just another member of the Eventide multi-effects pedal family. The biggest difference between the H9 and H90 comes in the form of 10 additional algorithms as well as improved DSP power. The H90 also expands I/O and front-panel usability with more knobs, buttons, and footswitches for controlling various parameters.
It’s worth noting that some users might still prefer the award-winning simplicity of the H9 over the H90. There’s certainly something to be said the one-knob design that made the H9 such a game-changer. The H90 goes farther and harder than the H9, arguably at the expense of some user-friendliness. Still, you can always access the H90’s Control software if you need to get deep into patch editing, and that makes it more accessible.
Eventide H90 Review: How Does It Stack Up?
Construction & Design
The Eventide H90 pedal comes in a sturdy, stage-ready metal enclosure that feels like it can withstand the rigors of the road. Its design consists of five knobs and three footswitches used for dialing in effects and switching between presets, etc. The two larger knobs allow users to switch between the H90’s three modes: Select, Bank, and Perform. As its name implies, the last mode turns the H90 into a full-blown pedalboard for live performance.
Improved DSP Power
One major improvement from the H9 to H90 was the swap from SHARC-based architecture to ARM-based architecture. This is the same DSP found in the H9000 processor. The result is the ability or run more complex algorithms for great resolution and more advanced processing techniques. At least partially, the improved DSP power is what allows the H90 to run an additional 10 algorithms over the H9.
Endless Possibilities for Your Sound
The H90 can really do it all. Reverb, delay, modulation, state-of-the-art pitch-shifting, overdrive, and more. It’s all there, ready for the studio or the stage, and poised to replace large pedal collections with its all-in-one processing power.
In true Eventide fashion, the quality of effects is exceptional, and the versatility of the pedal makes it a great companion and complement to virtually any existing rig.
Is the H90 Good for Live Sound?
Absolutely! The Perform mode especially makes it perfect for using on stage as an all-around sound station for all of your tonal needs. The Perform “Hot Knob” controls multiple parameters at once and also assigns a specific set of parameters to each of the other knobs based on the chosen algorithm. While it all sounds a bit technical and complicated in words, it’s best understood in practice — in which case things become a whole lot more clear.
Closing Thoughts: Why the Eventide H90 Pedal Deserves a Spot in Your Chain
Multi-effects units intend to simplify overly complex pedal chains. For both studio and live use, the Eventide H90 performs exceptionally well. It features premium sound quality, rugged build quality, and arguably more effects than anyone would practically need in a single sitting.
If you had to have one multi-effects unit, the H90 is definitely worth some serious consideration.