Empress Effects Announces Zoia, a Grid-Based Multi-Effects Pedal

Empress Effects has released its newest pedal: the Zoia "multithing." The company describes the pedal as a "compact grid of musical anything," and though that sounds vague and unspecific, it may just be the only way to describe what the Zoia actually is. In short, the Zoia seems like everything.

With the Zoia, the company's description continues, players can "use modules to construct instruments, effects, utilities," and save and transfer their work via SD card. Empress's video cleverly demonstrates the Zoia's promise of being "what you need it to be" by including fill-in-the-blank sentences alongside shots of the pedal performing various functions.

In the video above, you can see how "i want to ____ an ____ with ____" shows up on the screen first, before the blanks are filled with "sequence," "oscillator," and "an LFO," respectively. Then, a hand appears in frame, clicking around the surprisingly small grid to fulfill exactly the sentence's request. The video continues on like this, demonstrating the seemingly limitless possibilities of the Zoia.

The rest of the description features a short specs list that boasts features like ongoing updates, MIDI in and out, stereo operation (including Empress effect algorithms), and a "favorites system" that allows users to "favorite" moments as they build patches so that they can revert back to a safe spot if their experimenting goes awry.

From the looks of it, the Zoia has the potential to replace more than a few pieces of hardware on players' pedalboards. And if Empress's past releases—like the widely popular Ecosystem delay unit—are any indication, that's likely the Zoia's goal. Though this is just a teaser, we can tentatively expect a springtime release at a price of $450 USD.

So what do you think? Is this the game-changer that's going to replace your pedalboard? Let us know in the comments.

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