Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

An important thing about effects...

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Tecx, Mar 7, 2004.


  1. Tecx

    Tecx Radio Rock Leads To Sterility

    Jun 9, 2002
    Halifax, NS, Canada
    Ok I have been reading a lot of silly/disturbing reasons for people not liking/using effects... So here are my 2 cents...

    First off, effects take time to master... I sometimes here people say that they don't use them because they have trouble getting the "right sound" or that they can't switch them on in time with the music or piece. Well what did you think??? Did you pick up the bass and just become James Jamerson or Charles Mingus?.. No!.. It took work and practice to be able to play the bass proficiently, well what makes you think you can just buy a fx pedal and expect for yourself to be able to make it work right for you out of the box - or on another level to be able to master the art of switching it on and off in time with the piece at hand?..
    It took myself a long time to be able to manage all of my effects in live situations, and it took as much if not more practice than I already gave my bass playing... These things take a lot of work to make them work for you, and there are may aspects to think about:

    Your rig layout
    Your basses (active / passive)
    Your style - fast music, heavy music, soulful?..
    Your stage presence
    Your individual approach too creative thought.

    All of these aspects interact and effect the way you would use fx pedals, not just in the settings of them - but in where, when, and how frequently.

    15" speakers react to highs differently to 10s, tweeters - thats a whole other story... Tube gear sounds and reacts differently towards fx than solid state gear...

    Active basses general don't work as well with most effects, just they way they where designed... Out of all my 40 odd effects only 4 or 5 work even barley well with an active bass...

    If you are in a country band, you don't "need" a Zvex Wooly mammoth, but if you want one - Nothing Is Stopping You!.. Same goes for a light chorused sound, sounds great for metal...

    If you like jumping up and down on stage, pedals may not work the best for you, but again - with practice anything is possible... Personally for my more intricate pedal performances I take a shoegazer approach... But to each his own...

    And everyone has there own idea of creativity, some people "need" effects to achieve this (Doug Wimbish...) other do not (Skully Sverrisson...) Don't tread on people who chose to use, or not to use.. Everyone has there own artistic visions, and everyone has there own idea of creativity...

    Ok... Now that I have beat the tar out of that one... (but keep in mind these where just a few examples... I could have gone on longer, but for your sake I didn't..)

    Its all about patience, hard work, research, and careful experimentation... Playing an instrument doesn’t come easily - why should using effects?..

    Think about it...

    Alex
     
  2. Interesting post...it makes sense that you need to practise using your effects to get the right sound and right timing in turning them on and off
    I also think its important not to over use effects...it can make a song that would have been good really bad...
    Hmm i think that makes sense...im a bit tired
     
  3. Gregory Bruce Campbell

    Gregory Bruce Campbell

    Apr 14, 2002
    Helena, MT U.S.A 59602
    BEE basses, Morley pedals
    great thread alex!

    i really dig your point of view
     
  4. Tecx

    Tecx Radio Rock Leads To Sterility

    Jun 9, 2002
    Halifax, NS, Canada
    Thanks man... I am actualy surprised that it hasn't had much attention, I was positive it would atract some negitive vibes... But it barley generated any positive ones either... But I am very serious about it, I just needed to get it out there...

    Alex

     
  5. Electricmayhem

    Electricmayhem

    Dec 18, 2003
    NH
    Well here's another positive.

    You're right BTW.
     
  6. De Teng

    De Teng

    Oct 27, 2003
    Utrecht, Holland
    Very usefull thread indeed!

    About that practising a lot for getting YOUR sound, I totally agree. It took some months to create a kind of personal sound with three pedals. And still I'm changing the settings.

    Good point, mentioning that a lot of active basses don't work very well with FX, altough I'm not really afraid of using an octaver, chorus and downfilter with an active one. I prefer passive tone anyway, much more breating.
     
  7. +

    When I practice at home, I'm always setting up my entire rig like I would at a show and going over all the songs, practicing my footwork. I'd be like Michael Flatley, Riverdancing all over the board, until it became second nature. It got to the point that when I'd be unplugged, just sitting on the couch, I'd be tapping my toes when I knew the effects were going to be changing.

    (Alex...you gonna buy my whammy or what? :crying:
     
  8. ps. Is there any sort of 'fix' for using an active bass with effects? I usually play my Stingray with 3 band Active EQ or my Warwick w/ 18v EMG's, and those are the only basses I've ever used with effects. I don't know the difference between my basses and some passive P-bass.

    The only time I've ever really notices a problem is when I overdrive an Overdrive pedal or when my Q-tron freaked out banging the B on my Carvin.
     
  9. Tecx

    Tecx Radio Rock Leads To Sterility

    Jun 9, 2002
    Halifax, NS, Canada
    I just sent you an e-mail dude, sorry for the delay....

    My company SaS pedals we are working on a pasive tone buffer, to bring a active basses signal close to that of a passive bass - thus having it work better with effects... The Tone Soap (see "SaS pedals coming soon thread) does a a pretty good job at this - but I think I have unlocked the secret...

    Alex

     
  10. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member

    Active basses general don't work as well with most effects, just they way they where designed... Out of all my 40 odd effects only 4 or 5 work even barely well with an active bass...

    My experience is exactly the opposite, but I only own and use rack EFX that run at line level, or that I've built myself, optimised for my active basses.

    I'd say the responsibilty lies with the pedal designers to make more units that work well with active electronics. Making my basses revert to more passivity is the last thing I want to do. I've gone through a similar thought process to yours, but my conclusion is to build amps and pedals that enhance the difference between actives and passives, not to try to make them behave in the same fashion. Interesting thread, and I'm with you on the need to approach EFX as an element in their own right, and give them some serious thought and attention. Kill all presets!
     
  11. Gregory Bruce Campbell

    Gregory Bruce Campbell

    Apr 14, 2002
    Helena, MT U.S.A 59602
    BEE basses, Morley pedals
    there are so many gain pedals or boxes out there...

    what if a company made a simple box to "pad" before your pedals...

    maybe similar to a line mixer... so that you could have different settings for different instruments...

    it could have the gain / clip indicator light and say, three or mor inputs with gain knobs that have detents?

    does anything like this exist already?
     
  12. Tecx

    Tecx Radio Rock Leads To Sterility

    Jun 9, 2002
    Halifax, NS, Canada