Clean blend pedals

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by fuzz_factor, Feb 4, 2011.


  1. fuzz_factor

    fuzz_factor

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    Location:
    PDX
    A lot of people mention clean blending when discussing bass overdrive, distortion, fuzz, etc.

    I play a P Bass with flats and like a warm, fat, thumpy B-15 tone, but every now and then, I'd like to get some grind going. So far, using a VT Bass with the gain up, a Catalinbread SFT, 90's Rat and SUF Civil War Muff clone just don't sound right with my setup - a GK 700RB-II with a Raezer's Edge 15". Too... farty? Muffled? Unsatisfying?

    I really like the tone of my amp, and I like the VT Bass set pretty clean. Things just sound 'meh' when I click on any overdrive/distortion/fuzz pedal (and I've tried a bunch, more than mentioned above because I'm mainly a guitar player and have too much dirt :)). Like most of you, I dig the sound of a cranked Ampeg; I'm just not hearing it with the VT Bass (too crunchy) or the SFT (too muffled and middy).

    I'd like to try a clean blend pedal that has an effects loop and ability to set the wet/dry blend (or just setting the 'effected' level is fine).

    Doing some searching, I see the Radial BigShot MIX Effects Loop Mixer and the Boss LS-2. I'm leaning towards the Boss because, well, Boss pedals are great and have a good form factor. Are there any others I should check out? Any advice for getting the most out of these types of setups? Any tips for getting a good dirt sound with my rig? Thanks!
     
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member

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    Oct 17, 2005
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    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    I strongly recommend getting a blender with a phase-inversion switch. Wounded Paw and Xotic are the two brands I know of making those ATM (well, there are other related products by other brands, but I'm talking strictly blender loop pedals). I use the Xotic, but if it ever died (unlikely) I would want to try out the Wounded Paw.

    Radial's a good brand, but that BigShot Mix is a dud because it only allows blending between 50% wet and 100%--nothing below 50%.
     
  3. fuzz_factor

    fuzz_factor

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    Location:
    PDX
    Thanks bongomania. The Wounded Paw looks good. Priced right and pedalboard friendly. I probably wouldn't have found that one on my own, nor would I have thought about phase issues.
     
  4. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Location:
    PDX, OR
    Disclosures:
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Yeah when blending dirt pedals, it's common to have problems with low-end loss due to phase cancellation.
     
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  6. kevteop

    kevteop

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2008
    Location:
    York, UK
    As a cheap solution I would suggest a Boss LS-2 with a Digitech Bad Monkey in one of the loops. You won't get any phase issues with that setup.

    I can appreciate where Bongo is coming from though, it's frustrating when you try to blend a sound from a pedal that flips the signal phase, and you would be surprised how many do it. I wish they would just ****ing fix that before they declare their pedals market-ready, it really messes with bass players.
     
  7. reddi

    reddi

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2010
    Agreed, it's a pet peeve of mine as well.
     
  8. Mr.Hat

    Mr.Hat

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    Sep 18, 2010
    Anybody know if the ebs unidrive flips the phase ?
     
  9. sonicnuance

    sonicnuance Previously mozarwasagenius Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    Disclosures:
    Owner, Sonic Nuance Electronics
    These pedals have built in blends of clean and distortion/fuzz:

    MXR M80
    Tech21 Bass driver di
    Tech21 para driver di

    All of them are great pedals
     
  10. BassBrass

    BassBrass

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2009
    Location:
    Boston MA
    as do MXR/Dunlop Bass Blowtorch, Wounded Paw Attack Goat, Take Flight Pedals The Goose, Team Awesome Fuzz etc., Iron Ether Oxcide, Chuck Brown Dog, Source Audio Multiwave, Crowther Prunes & Custard, OXfuzz Bass, and ProCo Rat bass Juggernaught. I'm sure there are more.
    I use my Xotic blender mostly for a DE Ruiner; sounds so good that way it's worth the board space. (Ruiner, being 2 darkboosts, does not invert phase. One Dark boost does...)
     
  11. Rockin Mike

    Rockin Mike Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2011
    Can you do a clean blend with something like an Ernie Ball Stereo Volume/Pan pedal?
    http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/EB6165?utm_source=Google&utm_medium=PPC&utm_campaign=none&gclid=CJDymKSr7LQCFQWnnQodAD0AKg

    I'm thinking split the signal out of my compressor, one side stays clean, other side goes through the pedalboard, then combine them in a stereo TRS plug and go into the Ernie Ball. Use the EB as a pan pedal and get a variable wet/dry mix on whatever's active in the pedalboard?

    Is such an idea good, bad, or ugly?
     
  12. Rockin Mike

    Rockin Mike Supporting Member

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    May 27, 2011
  13. Rockin Mike

    Rockin Mike Supporting Member

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    May 27, 2011
  14. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut

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    John K Custom Basses
    IMO, Runoffgroove's 'ginger' or 'flipster' pedals can sound like a clean SVT, an SVT cranked to the threshold of distortion, and beyond with no low end loss, and neither one requires a clean blend. a fairfield circuitry 'barbershop' is also great for that as well.

    I also have the SFT and VT bass pedals but I rarely use them for the exact same reasons that you mentioned.
     
  15. Dazonbass

    Dazonbass

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Location:
    Toyohashi, Japan
    Gemini drive is a clean boost with a great sounding overdrive... tragically no longer in product but thought it was worth a mention.

    Also +1 on the ginger
     
  16. Meddle

    Meddle

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    Jul 27, 2009
    Location:
    Scotland
    Real men don't use clean blends.
     
  17. Low Sound Love

    Low Sound Love

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Location:
    Ghent, Belgium
    I used to use an Xotic X-blender to restore some punch and low end to my dirt pedals. Nowadays I just use dirt pedals that keep the punch and low end alive, without the blender ...
     
  18. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
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    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    IMO, a great pedal doesn't really need a blend.
     
  19. BassManMike73

    BassManMike73 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2011
    Location:
    Portage, MI
    I build pedals, and a blend is one that I've been doing for a while. If you want one built into an expression enclosure, that's something I could easily do. PM me if you're interested!
     
  20. Meddle

    Meddle

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Location:
    Scotland
    I'm tired of videos on Youtube of new bass distortion/fuzzes where the player uses a blend of 20% dirt to 80% clean. There is one for an MXR pedal where it looks like Cheech is playing the bass and I think it sounds like a clean pedal most of the time.

    Is bass distortion a new concept or something? I don't mean the Boss ODB-3 style distortion that accentuates roundwound 'zing' with some rumbly stuff thrown in, I mean a fuller 'Marshall' distortion.
     
  21. cheapbasslovin

    cheapbasslovin

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    Maybe, but one external parallel looper can make a bunch of middling pedals sound great.

    Badger Schism is another option.
     

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