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Any one else pedal challenged?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Joe Nerve, Mar 24, 2006.

  1. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I have several effects boxes. I have lots of places where I could use them, in one of the bands I play in I really SHOULD be using them. I hate the extra hassle involved though and I'm hoping that by complaining about it here perhaps I'll motivate myself and get past my crap. :)

    Things that bother me about using effects:

    • More stuff to carry around.
    • More stuff to pack up after a show.
    • A whole lot more places for things to go wrong and a much larger chance of you're bass just cutting out.
    • A lot more difficulty in figuring what went wrong if suddenly the bass does go silent.
    • A lot more chance of kicking a jack out.
    • A lot more difficulty finding just what cord you DID kick out.
    • The extra hassle of taping down all your cords if you DON'T want to kick your jack out.
    • Having to think.
    • Having to remember to turn the pedals off afer you use them for a song or a part of a song.
    • The possibility of accidentally stepping on one when you're jumping around a stage. Which I always seem to do.
    • The need to plug something else in and find another outlet.
    • The need to make sure you have an extension cord at all times.
    • The price of batteries if you don't want to plug them in, and then the need to be able to predict when the gig will be that you need to change them.
    • The need to check yet ANOTHER bag at the airport.
    BLAAAHH!!!! Is it worth it?

    Help me out here - I need to see some light.
  2. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Twice now my toddler has switched the parallel/series switch on my Loooper (which throws all of my effect that are connected to it into weirdland), and it usually takes me days to figure out what went wrong :meh:

    Only solution I can suggest to make it easier is to get a pedalboard that has a power source on it so you only need one plug for everthing. You can also get one where the cords go under the pedalboard so none of the cords are hanging around. Also, getting a Loooper or similar switching unit with a Master Bypass button is a godsend- if you get into trouble with one or more effects, just hit the one button and you bypass them all and your signal goes straight to your amp.
  3. DougP


    Sep 4, 2001
    i feel the same way. i have some pedals that would work well in parts of our songs, but i often feel that it just isnt worth the hassle.

    i even have a pretty streamlined process for connections.

    everything is in a pedal case and powered from a TU-2. so i get to leave everything solidly connected together. the TU-2 wall wart gets plugged into a power strip on the back of my rack, so i only need one wall outlet. i spent a lot of time getting this set up and i dont even use it.

    most of the stages we play are pretty small and my band doesnt perform jumping around type music so i am not really endangering my pedals.

    now that i have a two channel amp, i can leave ODs/distortion at home, so i usually just carry the tuner with me.
  4. phxlbrmpf


    Dec 27, 2002
    I find that a programmable multi effects pedal eliminates a lot of the annoyances that can be caused by daisy-chaining a bunch of stomp boxes. The only thing that's still going to be a hassle is switching between effects.
  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Pedals are for guitarists to cover up their wimpy sound!

    Real bassists don't need no stinkin' pedals!! :smug:
  6. cowsgomoo

    cowsgomoo gone to Longstanton Spice Museum

    Feb 8, 2003
    if it can't slot into my rack, I can't be bothered... all that messing about with tiny patch patch cables, stomp boxes and little square batteries is for guitarists... my next experimental purchase might well be a dbx 120 but if I had to rely on a stomp box to get the same effect I probably wouldn't bother
  7. did you ever think about rackmounts?
    try throwing in a boss GT-Pro into your amp's effect loop, and then you can program everything once, save it, and off you go. if your amp is rackmounted, it's only easier, beucase you can transport the whole rack. Plus, all you need is the midi cables to the foot controller and back...if two lines are too much, look at the line6 rackmount bass pod pro, which is only one cable to the footswitch. and the line6 floorboard has everything you'd need for the gig if you ask me...
  8. Bassis78


    Dec 22, 2003
    Rochester, NY
    Effects are great......FOR ME TO POOP ON!!!
  9. Tedintheshed

    Tedintheshed Banned

    Oct 8, 2004
    Columbus, Ohio
    That is a question that only you can answer. Some people are "P-Bass+Ampeg=ultimate tone" type of people, and others like to utilize a more diverse spectrum of sound. Neither is wrong.

    But to me- definately worth it, especially when doing originals.
  10. One might say real bassists don't need electricity!! :p
  11. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    I look at implementing pedals just like playing my bass: it takes practice. I spend alot of time setting up my boards to where they are as efficient and stable as possible, which is important because it's not uncommon for me to have upwards of 25 pedals running. Some would say it's a waste of time, but anything that you do to improve your performance, being practicing, setting up your instrument, or tweaking your rig is not time wasted.

    The best advice I can give? Use cabling you can make to custom lengths, such as George Ls or Daddario. Think about how your signal flow *should* go before you start mounting pedals. Use industrial strength velcro. Get a pedal board that comes in some sort of briefcase - don't bother with gigbags. Try to use true bypass pedals; if it dies in the middle of performance you can just turn it off and your signal will still pass through it. Don't bother with batteries, but don't spend too much on fancy power supplies; the $20 Visual Sound One Spot is a great alternative to a $250 Voodoo Lab Pedal Power. If you're using alot of effects, you might look into rack mounting them with a switching system, which isn't as difficult as it sounds.
  12. TaySte_2000


    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    I think what Ben has said here is excelent advice and alot of your problems joe would be solved by a pedalboard. The thing with effects is not to have them for havings sake, if you are in a cover band there are songs that NEED effects, I sometimes play the keyboard parts to songs in my band using my digitech bsw why? because its a better twist on the original song than just thumping a root note and leaving out an integral keyboard part.

    Some effects are more or less requred in certain circumstances, compression, eq, di box all of these while some might say aren't effects still mainly come in pedal format and in those cases are best mounted on a board, as that is still far smaller than carrying some rack mount units that do the same thing.

    It's all about what you play, some people play db, 4 strings, 5 strings, 11 strings whatever, some people use 4,000w amps some use 100w amps, some people use no effects some use 25 but if they feel that's what they need then that's what they need.

    Hope this helps
  13. Nyarlathotep

    Nyarlathotep Banned

    Feb 5, 2006
    West Coast of Canada
    +1 Billion on that one. Don't be all hatin' cus people use FX :(
  14. I definitely think that I fit into the minimalist category when it comes to gear. Every time I find myself looking at pedals/effects online or in the store and drooling, I later realize that I do NOT really need them, especially considering the extra $$$/batteries/hassle factor.

    I think that the main issue is how well the sound sits in the mix....Is it at the right volume? Clear and distinguishable from the other instruments? Yes?? Then GOOD ENOUGH!! I don't think that the audience really cares that much and say things to each other like "this band is alright, but the bass sound is all wrong...there should be some mild tube overdrive and a touch of phaser in there". The only exceptions for me are the really obvious bass effect parts, such as the bass delay at the beginning of "Pets" by Porno for Pyros...where people really would be put-off if it wasn't there.

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