I recently purchased a Zoom B3, I was really excited about this product. I have just started playing in a cover band, playing rock and pop standards.
I was looking forward to having all these effects at my disposal, plus that amp and cab modeling and all the other goodies ( USB input, looper, drum beats etc.) and as a side benefit I through I would be able to use the bass synths to emulate some of the synth bass sounds that are used in the recordings of some of the top 40 dance stuff we do.
I never used any effect on my bass in the 20 plus years that I have been playing, I never really mess with my bass tone that much. The bass I have been using in an American Standard Jazz Bass ( pick up Volume posts all the way up and the tone knob set to neutral), with the simple stock passive pick-ups going into an Ampeg SVT 3 ( pretty much flat with a little bass boost and a little treble boost and some frequency cut some with the 9 band graphic EQ) with a BagEnd E-15 ( one 15" speaker ) I was happy and never worried about my tone, but since I started playing with this band I have wanted to try and get a tighter low end sound, to leave more room for the guitar and be tighter with the drums.
I put heavier gauge strings on my bass and that open a can a worms, in short my bass is being repaired and I had to buy a second bass, I wanted a 5 string, so I ended up getting an Ibanez SR405, with an active EQ. I still like this bass but all those EQ buttons, just make the bass sound like crap, so I try to set them as flat as possible but there is that tone knob, that Ibanez calls the Style Sweeper ( Finger-Slap) I wish I could by-pass this knob, it drives me nuts, The Finger selection is so boomy that any note I play lower then the D on the 5th fret A string has no definition at all the notes bleed into each other something terrible, that slap selector, has way to much high end taking all the bottom out of the bass, trying to find the mid point is always a challenge, but I had it were I was happy.
Then along comes the Zoom, while the bass synth sounds are cool, I find them useless in the real word, when playing with my band they get lost in the mix and just sounds like noise, and I can not get them to emulate the sounds that I want to get, ( Ignorance or lack of skill on my part I'll admit that! )
Not a big loss just a little disappointed, I figured I'll just use the amp models and maybe some compression will tame that Ibanez. When I first got it I found a sound that I liked, and figured I would use that for my DI sound when playing live, there is nothing I hate more then the sound of a Bass being playing through a DI Box, but I really don't want to drag my amp around to gigs ( this may not be an option
) after a few days with this sound I became unhappy with it and started looking for other stored patches, nothing! I could find nothing I was happy with, so I started trying to create my own, ( ugg! )the more things I tried the worst the sound got, so I decided to plug in headphones, because I am sure my amp was affecting what I was hearing, that just made things worst.
As I sat there, I started to remember why I never used effects, I could never get my bass to sound good with them, after last nights episode not even plugging straight into the amp sounded good anymore. I decided to stop and go watch TV.
I now want to return the Zoom, but I am not sure if I should give it another shot or just concede that FX are not my thing.
The thing is a compressor alone is going to cost a $100, I have a DI box but ehh!
, but I would probably buy a new one, and they can get way above $100, so the B3 could just be a compressor and DI box, that I paid $200.
So what it the point of this besides just bitching you ask!
I am wondering if anyone has had similar problems with effects in the past and was able to over come the " everything sounds like ****" syndrome!