Regarding that the addition of 10 second “real” delay would render the unit way more expensive. I can not possibly think of that if you can do a/any 10-20-30 – or whatever – second looper, you should be able to provide just as much amount of “regular” delay without any sweat. What is any delay but a looper fading out quickly? What is any looper but a delay with HOLD function to it? Freeze…
I for one, can’t think of that (in case of say DigiTech units and especially Strymon TimeLine series) anything like that would be more expensive at all. Those other units have maximum 2.500 millisecond delay (too little IMHO) and DigiTech TImebender had 5.000 millisecond delay (still too little), but had 30 second and 20 seconds looper capabilities. Don’t really understand this from a digital memory standpoint. It would – ONLY – if you required to loop with delays, then you have to split dividing times.
When using DigiTech live, one could press the “tap strum” button and wait a long time between the tap, so when you released it, you could play long and exact canon lines and harmony scales on the guitar, in time with drummer, that lasted for quite a few bars. In such circumstancens longer delays than 5 seconds makes sense. Old Lexicon units had 9 seconds delay, perfect for loops, cobwebs of delays, like Robert Fripps “soundscapes” or “Frippertronics”, and you could put them in while playing with any band, as an atmospheric ambient and dry ice moment. I think going above 10-12 seconds would be overkill, but then even old Lexicon JamMan had 32 seconds (with expanded memory). That one had delay/looper maximum at the same time. They didn’t make any difference of it. It was in the 90s. Now it’s 30 years later on. C’mon people. Not rocket science anymore!
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If I would use such an algorithm, I would have added reverb to each successive repeat in the delay, so the ones that are the “oldest” repeats will sound even further away in a huge hall/space. And the “newest” ones would be dry in your face. Don’t even know any unit from any other manufacturer who does this today. On shorter delays it would make no sense, but on longer ones. Maybe that’s a possible wish?