Being a bit of an MXR fan, you could imagine my face when the new MXR M300 Reverb pedal arrived
in our store this past Monday – an expression of joy, exaltation, and more joy. I’ve been shopping
for a new reverb to add to my collection, and I’m one of many who have been eagerly anticipating
this pedal’s release, ever since the amazing trailer video from March of this year. Is MXR’s first
foray into reverb the pedal to win our hearts and earn a place on all of our pedalboards?
Yes. Yes it is.
The Red Dog Music MXR M300 review!
Let’s get the non-sound stuff out of the way – this is a compact MXR pedal, and as such the build quality is exceptional and the visual design is understated but effective, with three controls (Tone,
Decay, and Mix) accompanied by the brand’s signature sans-serif. A perfect example of this
stellar design is how the Tone control pulls double duty – the EQ sweep is available by turning the
knob, but pressing it in cycles through the six available reverb settings. This means you can flick
through the settings with your foot, which is a lifesaver for those of us who like to change sounds
onstage but have the flexibility of a day old baguette.
Which is me.
This design philosophy of ‘simple done well’ carries over to their audio as well. The six settings
include the classic Spring, Room and Plate sounds, a Mod setting, and the more unique Epic and
Pad settings, and with everything set to 12’o clock they perform phenomenally. The Room reverb
gives your guitar a touch of presence and placement, while Spring emulates the distinct metallic
twang of built-in authentic spring reverb, a core component of every surf song in existence. The
aptly-named Epic is easily my favourite, enveloping your guitar with lush, swirling shoegazey loveliness.
All of the settings sound great out of the box, but the versatility of the Decay and Tone controls
particularly are what really propels this pedal’s potential. Maxing out Decay will push each reverb
into near infinite sustain, while rolling off the Tone makes for intensely dark and lush tones. Too
much brightness in a longer or louder reverb can be distracting or sound unnatural, so I’m both
impressed and relieved with just how dark this pedal can get.
Just the MXR M300 – without the guitar!
The MXR M300 Reverb is the first reverb pedal on which I’ve been happy to play a chord, roll the
volume off and just sit and listen to the sound develop. It’s honestly quite amazing. Sure, there are
more feature-laden competitors with a metric ton of extra bells and whistles, but most of those
cost double the price of the M300 and certainly aren’t as compact. For those of us who don’t need
all the crazy functionality of a boutique bank balance buster (say that quickly five times) and just
want a choice of fantastic, versatile reverb tones then this is the one to go for.
Did I mention it can do stereo in/out? And it has an option for trails, where the reverb keeps going
after you’ve turned the pedal off? And it has an 100% wet mode for using in stereo signals or as
an extreme effect? AND it has an expression pedal input, allowing you to sweep between two
different control settings?
The MXR M300 Reverb pedal – will we have stock?
…actually, never mind. I’m buying it.
Nip down to our Edinburgh store if you want to try and prise it from my hands. Excuse the mess
instore, we’ll have something for you soon!
So, if the MXR M300 reverb sounds like it’s got your sort of reflections and tails, you might want to get in quick before Gregor does!
Red Dog Music is the UK’s friendliest musical instrument and pro-audio dealer. Between our 5000 square foot Edinburgh shop filled with an incredible range of products, and our London showroom in Clapham specialising in high-end instruments, dj and pro-audio, Red Dog Music has you covered from north to south and from performance to playback.