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Active Bass trough effects pedal to amp, is that ok?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by savofenno, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. savofenno


    Jun 12, 2010
    Haninge, Sweden
    I got a Zoom B1X pedal a couple of weeks ago and i have played my 7 passive basses through it to Fender Rumble 100 amp with ever improving results.
    But i have 2 active basses which i have not dared to try yet with my usual bass-effects pedal-with amp in active button down.
    Must i add one more cable and place that pedal in amp`s send-return circle? Will my current setup damage something when active bass is used?
    Sorry if i am old style bassist, used to passive Fender, Höfner etc. bass playing.
  2. Primakurtz

    Primakurtz Registered Nihilist

    Nov 23, 2011
    Denver, Colorado
    No harm will come. It may sound a little distorted, if the signal is too strong for the amp's input, but some of us like that sound. :)
  3. savofenno


    Jun 12, 2010
    Haninge, Sweden
    I did at last play my ESP 5-string.:hyper: No distortion if i keep pedal`s master volume below 30, that gives all the volume i need and more from the amp. Seems amp handles active basses right, no matter if signal comes straight from bass or through some pedal! Old man`s stupid worries...:rolleyes:
  4. Wallace320

    Wallace320 Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2012
    Milan, Italy
    I mean

    I use a full Boss Bcb60 pedalboard (feel free to look at my profile) that I always run into send-return channel.

    A thing that I don't do is usin' it with 5ers 'cause, playin' a full step downtuned, implies that I eventually clip amp transistors

    But all 4ers, thru different setup if fullstep downtuned (Thrash Metal band) or regularly tuned (Rock Cover band) go directly in the amp input, then amp equalizer, then pedalboard into send-return...

    With some combos of mine (namely Ibanez WholeTone, for Eko Florence Acoustic bass; Ibanez SoundWave, for Axl McCartney's Violin bass; Ampeg 115 Hp, for intimate venues) I've no send-return channel, so I just go straight in, usin' their, honestly rich, onboard presets.

  5. ngh


    Feb 6, 2013
    brooklyn, ny
    some pedals really don't like super high output signals being fed into them. then again some don't mind it and some love it. trial and error is your best bet, as far as I know you don't risk damaging anything if you act responsibly. then again I seldom act responsibly and am yet to have anything truly catastrophic happen.... other than that one time I had sparks and smoke fly out of an amp, but that was college and college was crazy ;)... but seriously though it will be fine, it just might not sound how you expect.
  6. What I do is run into a Compressor/Limiter, or you could use a volume pedal, first. This allows you to control the gain going to the rest of the circuit. You could bump it down to an acceptable level.
  7. levis76

    levis76 Defender of the Low Ender Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2007
    Metro Detroit
    Find out if the pedals input has a buffer, most modern digital pedals do. A pedal with an input buffer will handle active basses just as well as passives, the buffer is just that, it buffers the input signal to a usable level, think of it as an automatic gain control. A pedal with no buffer is fine too, it just means you will have to ease up on the instrument volume or risk pushing the pedals input into overdrive, which usually doesn't sound very good, but some might like it.

    FWIW, I play a fully active 5 string with EMG p'ups and preamp wired for 18V, and typically only use half to three quarters of the volume. I find it gives me a lot more headroom for the preamp tone controls to do their thing and the output isn't much higher than a passive signal.
  8. savofenno


    Jun 12, 2010
    Haninge, Sweden

    It seem to have a input buffer. With active bass it still raises it`s output, but not much, i have master level set at 70-80 with passive and 30-50 with active basses now, the amp sounds clean and powerful.

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