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Going through a minimalist stage

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by caeman, May 22, 2012.

  1. caeman

    caeman The Root Master

    Sep 17, 2008
    I seem to be a minimalist stage of my effects use right now. In assessing what I was actually using to play music, I began parring back. The fat cutting left me with two pedals: EQ and Overdrive – the tuner doesn't count, since it isn't an effect. I wasn't done thinking, though. I did an experiment this past weekend for Shabbat service and didn't use an EQ pedal, just the Cave G4 with it's balanced out to the house. At the Synagogue, everything is direct to the house. We have monitors on the bema. No EQ pedal. And the results were good. So maybe my mantra about an EQ pedals being “always useful” isn't quite “always”? Maybe, by not using an EQ pedal, I left the sound board tech more freedom to modify my sound to suit the acoustics of the room, than me fiddling with mids and such? I have a Kustom KPM10 monitor which works just fine as a bass monitor. I can hear myself plenty well.

    My electric bass rig is now just the Cave G4 and a tuner. I need to trial some tuner clip-ons, maybe I can reduce the PT-Nano down to just one pedal.

    When I do get to use my amp, my GK has an EQ on the preamp section. If I am recording direct, Reaper has an EQ function.

    So, maybe I really don't HAVE TO HAVE an EQ. This is tough for me, as I have always believe in the power of my EQ pedal. Does it seem like I am approaching this thought pattern in the right manner?

    And here we are. I have gone from a PT-Jr with all sorts of various and fun effects that weren't used hardly ever, to a single pedal that adds just a touch of growl to my bass that is on all the time – and conveniently doesn't require a power connection or battery – and packing up in the morning for a church gig has gotten so much faster.

    Maybe I need to join a funk band to give me an excuse to start carrying a filter and flanger again? :D
  2. EQ pedals are mostly good for controlling mid-ranges where the amps don't have good controls for this. If the amp has such controls, the whole EQ pedal is superfluous.
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  4. Epidrake


    May 24, 2011
    I totally get the minimalist route. I through it regularly. It's all good.
  5. kreider204


    Nov 29, 2008
    WI, USA
    If you're happy with the eq on your amp, and you don't need to change eq settings on the fly during songs, then no need for it, I say. I've never used one in a rock band setting, though I may start using one for soloing in jazz groups.

    Clip-on tuners: I like my Snark, though the display can be a little hard to read if you're not look at it dead-on. Otherwise, it's fast and accurate enough for live work.
  6. I went through something similar about 5 years ago, where I decided I was going to stop using EQ and concentrated instead on getting the desired tone with my hands, strings, pickups, bass. It was an incredibly useful exercise, and even though I now use an amp with EQ (just in case), I try not to touch it. :)
  7. Modern Growl

    Modern Growl Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2005
    NY/NJ Metro Area
    I've gone through a minamilast stage since I started playing 10 years ago.

    no effect at all! ;)
  8. caeman

    caeman The Root Master

    Sep 17, 2008
    Yeah, I remember reading another thread where all sorts of clip-ons were discussed. I have a Snark SN-1 on order. If it works well with my short-scale Gretsch, then I won't need a pedal board at all. The Cave G4 will fit in one the cubby slots in the bass case.
  9. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    I get by just fine with the amp EQ. Simplicity is where it's at.
  10. caeman

    caeman The Root Master

    Sep 17, 2008
    The overdrive on my GK sucks. I refuse to use it. It is a distortiony mess of fuzz, like as if someone tried to make cake, but thought that making it half ice cream cake would be a good idea, and then put the whole thing into the oven.
  11. MK1


    Nov 23, 2009
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I really like my Planet Waves NS Mini tuner. I play a 4-string and it tracks really well, plus it's very discrete.
  12. kreider204


    Nov 29, 2008
    WI, USA
    :) I definitely think the OD/distortion pedal is a keeper. Unless your amp happens to have just that sound you're looking for, a pedal is the way to go - you can try a bunch out, find the one you like best, swap it out if your tastes change, etc.
  13. behndy


    Nov 1, 2008
    all talk of minimalism in effects use is BULL****.

    moar toans = moar good.
  14. Exactly! Minimalist effect usage is just one step removed from being an anti-effect troll
  15. behndy


    Nov 1, 2008
  16. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    Obviously, +1.

  17. Clearly +2
  18. caeman

    caeman The Root Master

    Sep 17, 2008
    Behndy, it's okay! I'm never going to swear off effects completely. I am merely saving up my energy for the next phase, what ever it may be. :)
  19. behndy


    Nov 1, 2008
    nope. i find this concept... DISAGREEABLE.

    hence, it's bull****. sorry homie.
  20. tlvernon


    Jan 26, 2011
    Dayton OH
    My experience is obsessing about pedals is an efficient way to escape reality.

    In the end, how many of my favorite recorded bass tones, have used effects?

    Not many.
  21. behndy


    Nov 1, 2008
    thppppppbbbt. sounds like you enjoy music i'd find boring. so, you're wrong. sorry, how it works. JUST THE WAY OF THE WORLD.

    if by a minimlilistic approach you mean going down to one fuzz, one delay, one filter, one OD, one octaver.... sure. that can be fun some times.

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