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ART SGX Nightbass w/ X-15 Ultra foot pedal: Does anyone have any experience with this

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Thudmiester, Dec 18, 2003.

  1. I am in the market to buy an effects processor but I have found that many of the effects sound cheap unless you spend an arm and a leg! I've seen an effects processor in an ad made by ART called the SGX nightbass w/ footpedal. I have heard that it was a good effects processor and I've heard that it was a nightmare but nothing specific as too why. Has anyone had any experience with this equipment and if so can you elaborate as to why it is good or bad. Thanks!:bassist: :bassist: :bassist: Thudmiester
  2. BruceWane


    Oct 31, 2002
    Houston, TX
    Been a while since I played one, but as I recall.....The more basic effects like chorus, flange, reverb OK, but I didn't care for the distortion because it wasn't very tweakable - kind of all or nothing. And the pitch detune/octaver function was pretty awful, totally useless.

    If you've got a decent preamp already, you'd be much better off getting a used alesis quadraverb or a lexicon effects unit. They do the chorus/flange/reverb thing very, very well.

    The X-15 is a pretty good floor controller. You can use it with any MIDI controlled devices. The expression pedals are only semi-useful. They work fine for volume pedal or wah effects in a live setting, but if you listen very closely you can hear distinct "steps" in the modulation - meaning when you do a volume swell, it's not a completely smooth sweep; you can hear many tiny steps in the volume change, or wah, or whatever effect you are controlling. Not good for recording. And some effects cannot be used with the expression pedals, like you can't use them to alter delay times while you're playing (like Doug Wimbish does with his analog delay pedals) because it causes a kind of "zipper" or "zing" noise. I don't know of any MIDI devices that do not have this problem, but I haven't shopped for any lately. There may be some that deal with continuous controller information (that's the tech term for an expression pedal) better now.

    If you really want good wah and volume pedal effects, I'd get a MIDI floor controller without the expression pedals to control your digital reverb and get good old fashioned Morley or Dunlop wah and volume pedals.

    As far as distortion, about the best I found is an ADA MB-1 preamp. Very, very tweakable, from just a touch of trebly distortion on top of a thick bass tone to all-out crunch and anything in between, and the distortion even sounds good on a low B - I found an awful lot of distortion pedals that don't do to well way down low. Too bad the ADA factory burned down years ago. MB-1's do come up used from time to time, and mine's been totally reliable, so I wouldn't be afraid to buy one used. Full-blown MIDI programabilty, too, so with a foot controller you've got 128 preset tones right under your toe.
  3. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Yes, I used to own one of those. Nice setup for goofing around and checking out sounds, but a) it's way too complicated for live use (you have to spend a lot of time programming it to make it useful), and b) the preamp in it is way to noisy for studio use. I found it useful as an external effects unit in the studio, that's all. I suppose it would be good for live work if you play stuff that requires you to change sounds rapidly and frequently, and if you're willing to spend the time programming it, but neither one of those applies to me. Nice sounds though, there were some nice presets in mine when I got it. My favorite sound was "ScratchCat", it was one of the SGX users' custom presets towards the end of the range.
  4. well, i still have my Nightbass and x-15. Which Nightbass are you thinking of getting? I have the nightbass SE, i think it is the later model, because (from what i gather from the internet) ART first made one with pink fonts and later changed it to purple fonts. Mine is purple fonted. so anyways, I like it. it is a bit noisy for straight recording, but I usually send the thing through a compressor (or turn the compressor up in the patch) than it is fine. I would suggest a stereo setup if you go with this preamp. The only reason being that it has some cool delay/panning effects. The basic effects are decent, i agree with everyone here who said the distortion is weak. it sounds like guitar distortion, which usually sucks out any bass and leaves (and some really boost) the highs. that is also why I bought the boss odb-3. I think the x-15 is awesome. unfortunatly i got it used, and the second pedal's sensor is bent. (i call it the sensor, i don't really know what it is, but it is a little piece of plastic that goes up and down with the pedal. you will see it if you look under the front of the pedal.) otherwise, it is really a good pedal. i made a patch with all the effects I could fit, and you can assign each button on the pedal to switch each effect on and off, like a normal pedalboard. I thought that was cool. I am happy with my nightbass, i use it to record, not quite live because my band is not really a band for a lot of effects. I got mine used for $125 and the salesman threw in the X-15 for free. the only problem i have with it is that since i got it used, there was no manual. I really want one, so if anybody has one, and doesn't mind getting rid of it for somewhat cheap, send me a message!
    good luck with the preamp search,
  5. Andrew2012


    Jul 31, 2012
    I bought Sgx nightbass and X-15. On Sgx the preset for X-15 are from 20 to 37 always indicates 2 controller : 4 MC and MC 11. I can't operate the volume control, I tried putting as MC parameter in both 7 (Main Volume) and when I press the pedal the value goes from 0 to 100 but the volume does not change. Can You Help Me? Andrea
  6. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    Wow. This must be in the running for the oldest thread revival ever. And I'm so pleased to see it's for the SGX Nightbass!

    Good for you Mr NewSGXNightbassOwner...I've always wanted one of these. Though if I got one now my fantasy of how awesome it is might be tarnished.
  7. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    It was absolutely top notch when it got out.
    Digital technology being what it is, even entry models of today like a Zoom B3 or Boss ME50B will sound heaps better, with a million more possibilities, better ADA converters and ergonomical features that don't even compare.
    If you pay 100 for it I'd consider it a good deal, otherwise pass your way.
  8. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    I don't think I'd ever get one now for the reasons you mentioned plus it's so...big.