Whammy (5th Generation)
The 5th generation Whammy is very much the same beast as the first. It features the same enclosure layout with a built-in expression pedal, a selector matrix displaying the available pitch shifting options, as well as a bypass switch.
With 18 available options, each pitch selection changes the pitching of the heel and toe positions of the expression pedal from –2 octaves to +2 octaves and everything in between. The selector matrix also has two sides; Harmony and Whammy.
Harmony has a pitch assigned to both the heel and toe positions of the expression pedal, whilst also allowing the dry signal to pass through – the idea being that you can use the expression pedal to harmonise with your dry signal and change your heel/toe to change the interval of the harmony. The Whammy side of the pedal on the other hand is 100% wet and moves from your dry, standard pitch in the heel position, to the selected pitch in the toe position.
The classic ‘Whammy’ sound that you hear in the hands (or foot!) of Tom Morello is the Octave Up position in the Whammy mode. This raises the pitch up by an octave when the expression pedal is in its toe position.
The new feature of the Whammy 5 is the Classic/Chord switch, which changes the character of the Whammy effect from the trademark monophonic pitch shifting of the original Whammy I, to a new improved Polyphonic setting called ‘Chords’. The setting is smoother and allows for multiple notes to be shifted without introducing strange and off-putting artefacts into the signal.