Moog MF-104Z

The Moog MF-104Z ($729 retail/$690 street) is a reissue of the MF-104 introduced in 2000, which was limited to 1000 units due to a scarcity of discontinued bucket-brigade chips.

Those original pedals now go for around $1,200, making the MF-104Z welcome news for those who missed out the first time around.

The MF-104Z provides more than a full second of delay using NOS Panasonic chips, and as with all Moogerfooger pedals, its I/O and control options are, well, out of control. In addition to the perfunctory Mix, Delay Time, and Feedback controls, there are knobs for Drive, Output Level, and Loop Gain (which adjusts the level of the switchable external feedback loop). On the rear panel you not only get audio and effects loop I/O, but also included are jacks for controlling feedback, mix, and delay time via expression pedals or external control voltage sources.

All of this control notwithstanding, the MF-104Z’s real claim to fame—and primary justification for its high price tag—is its sound quality. Even at extended settings the delays retain much of their high-end definition, and they are highly musical and inspirational—making you want to compose music specifically to take advantage of the textures. Additionally, all of the controls work flawlessly, introducing no hash or goofy noises no matter how extreme the settings, and the external loop works flawlessly. The spaceship sounds are also to die for. I cannot praise this pedal highly enough, which is why it receives an Editors’ Pick Award.