How To Use Chorus Pedal | Best Sound from Guitar Effects

hand touching pedal for how to use chorus pedal

How To Use Chorus Pedal | Best Sound from Guitar Effects

How to Use a Chorus Pedal


  • The chorus effect originated in the Roland Jazz Chorus electric guitar amplifier, leading to the first pedal in 1976.
  • This digital pedal effect is extremely popular in various musical genres with many guitar players, from alternative to jazz and beyond.
  • When using a digital chorus pedal, or any delay pedal, place it at the end of the signal chain for the best and cleanest results and experiment with depth control, delay time, and the rate knob. 

If you are new to guitar effects, you may wonder how to use a chorus pedal. Many of the best guitars, after all, integrate with a vast array of effects, including the extremely popular chorus pedal. So why count chorus pedals as some of the best guitar pedals out there, and what are some tips for using this type of pedal? Keep reading to find out.

Why Use a Chorus Pedal?

When learning how to use a guitar pedal, it is worth spending some time with the chorus effect. A chorus effect creates a truly unique soundscape even without learning how to use an EQ pedal to further manipulate the tone. Chorus is one of the go-to guitar effects for a wide variety of music genres, making it more crucial than, say, learning how to use a wah pedal. There are dozens upon dozens of chorus pedals on the market, and they all integrate well with other types of pedals if you are learning how to use a noise gate pedal.

Tips to Use a Chorus Pedal

Chorus is a relatively complex guitar effect, and there are many variations on the theme available in pedal form. In other words, there is no universal instruction manual here, though there are some useful tips.

Test Guitar Cables

Before using your chorus pedal for the first time, test all of your guitar cables to make sure they are in proper working order. Remember, you need two cables to operate any pedal. One goes from the guitar to the pedal, and the other goes from the pedal to the amp or audio interface.

Choose a Good Signal Chain Placement

Chorus excels at the end of a signal chain, as it is a modulation effect that greatly impacts the signal. Placing it earlier in the signal could lead to some muddy tones, as each subsequent pedal will be acting upon a tone that has already been affected by the chorus. Of course, everything with music is in the ear of the beholder, so feel free to experiment with placing it anywhere in the chain, but perhaps start with the end of the chain.

Try the Boost

Many, though not all, of these pedals include a boost function that raises the signal to allow it to stick out. This is helpful when playing leads, for instance, or when you really want to blast an audience with the chorus effect.

Chorus Effect FAQs

What is a chorus amplifier?

A chorus amp is one with a built-in chorus effect, transforming clean tones into vibrato tones and beyond. 

What causes a chorus pedal to sound bad? rate depth 

If you have the delay time, delay rate, and depth set extremely high, it could muddy the sound. With digital chorus pedals and any digital pedal, start slowly and adjust the level knob and depth knob as needed.

What does a chorus pedal sound like? 

This depends on your settings, but a chorus effect pedal is a type of delay pedal, so the sound changes depending on the delay time for different guitar players. Sometimes it sounds like a simple tremolo effect, and other times, it sounds like true doubling. 



“The first mass-market chorus pedal was the CE-1 by BOSS, a legendary Japanese manufacturer of stompboxes that is now owned by Roland, creators of the Jazz Chorus amp.” (source)

TIP: Experiment with the various knobs, dials, and switches to find your perfect level of chorus saturation.






Mimi Chase
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Mimi has been working in the Music Industry since 2007. She excels in organization; fulfilling roles as an Artist Manager, Tour Manager & Production, Album Release, Budget Analyst etc. She sees a variety of Gear and Instruments from artists on the road, to venue's backline to hear what sounds the best and whats the most durable. She earned her Business Degree from Roanoke College, and utilizes those skills to promote Artist Growth!

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