The Electric Mistress is a guitar effect pedal made by Electro-Harmonix. It generates the so called flanging effect. The Electric Mistress was the first flanger musicians could use live on stage as has been used by artists such as David Gilmour (Pink Floyd), Andy Summers (The Police) and John Frusciante (Red Hot Chilli Peppers).
The Electric Mistress is a seemingly simple analog flanger effects pedal with controls over Rate, Range and Colour. The Mistress was first introduced in the mid 1970's and has since seen a slew of modifications under various revisions. From these, the two main models are the original Electric Mistress and the Deluxe Electric Mistress.
The first generation Electric Mistress pedals were produced between 1976-81. These were housed in Big Muff-sized boxes powered by two 9V batteries (the 1981 version powered by a single 9V). Graphics and schematics changed over the years but the tone stayed more or less the same.
These early versions are known for their liquidy character and chorusy flanging. They were also known for being very noisy (even when they were switched off) and they had a nasty volume drop when engaged.
Like many of the older Electro Harmonics pedals, vintage Electric Mistress pedals are subject to inconsistent use of parts with varying quality. Two seemingly identical pedals can sound very different.
Deluxe Electric Mistress
The Deluxe Electric Mistress was designed by Electro Harmonix engineer Howard Davis (who also designed the Deluxe Memory Man). It was offered along side the original Mistress between 1978-81 and later reissued in 1999 (to present) presented in a slightly larger box. Graphics and schematics changed over the years but the tone has stayed more or less the same.
The Deluxe is featured a noise filter, making it less noisy than the original Mistress. It has a slightly more jet-like tone, like the MXR, with a hint more mid range and low end.
From 2006, Electro-Harmonix introduced several new designed pedals like the XO or Nano-Series. The Electric Mistress now became the NEO Mistress and the Stereo Electric Mistress. These new pedals are digital and have nothing in common with the classic Electric Mistress and Deluxe Electric Mistress, from a technical point of view. They also tend to sound somewhat darker - a distinction which purists often critique.
The Gear Rack