The Tremolo Probe is a kind of cross between a theremin volume control and a Super Hard-On. There is a 3-5/8" square copper plate mounted on a chunk of 3/8" clear acrylic that passes over the top of the pedal housing, angles down to sharp turn, and goes back to the pedal. Under the whole mess is a 3 5/8" by 7" sheet of aluminum that provides shielding from annoying ground effects and wires under the stage. It also serves to protect the knob from being knocked off if you drop it on that end... and it makes a nice toe chopper if you are barefoot.
What does the ZVex Tremolo Probe do?
At the he heart of this pedal is a super hard-on circuit combined with a probe controller circuit that I developed for use with the fuzz probe and some other devices not yet released. You can tap on this pedal with your foot to make lovely tremolo sounds that are in perfect time with your foot's movement... so they can be perfectly in time with your performance or the band's tempo changes. You can also use the pedal to make reverse-sounding volume swells or pedal-steel type volume effects.
How does the ZVex Tremolo Probe work?
The copper antenna projects a field of RF energy that is affected by your foot (or other appendage), altering the circuit that generates it, an in so doing, increasing the brightness of that LED on the top of the pedal and also controlling the master volume of the output. You can set the drive of the pedal with the knob on the back... it gets pretty darn loud, so watch out. It will distort in an interesting way when it is cranked. Basically, the reason it is called the tremolo probe is that you can tap on the antenna at any speed and your sound will be a nice tremolo in time with the band. It is possible to set the volume to be up slightly when your foot is off the antenna and come up louder as your foot approaches the antenna... see next.
How do I use my ZVex Tremolo Probe?
You might start with these settings and rules:
1) Plug in your cords (output and battery switch is on LEFT).
2) Make sure your guitar cords are AWAY from the antenna. They will mess with the probe just like your foot does.
3) Stomp on the switch and you'll be able to tell when it's on, when it is quiet with your foot away. Bring your foot near the antenna to control the volume of the guitar.
4) Put your foot completely on the pedal and adjust the knob on the back until it's at the right volume. Voila.