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Boss ODB-3 vs MXR Bass Overdrive vs MXR M-80 vs ...

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by russpurdy, Jan 5, 2014.

  1. russpurdy


    Apr 16, 2013
    Hey guys....

    So I have fuzz covered but I would like to ad an overdrive to my rig that will cut through fuzzed out guitars. I have heard that Chris W from Muse uses overdrive and a muff together so I thought I would try that out. I have a dual amp rig but want an overdrive that has a blend function and can be found for around $100 or less used/new. I have been looking at the Boss Bass Overdrive which I understand was used on early Muse stuff, the MXR Bass Overdrive which I dig for simplicity and warm tone, and the MXR M80 which seems to have a pretty cutting sound and has the benefit of a DI.

    I'm a little worried that a warm tone will just get lost and i really need to cut through. That being said, which would you go for? My plan is to use whichever OD I settle on for the high end and my big muff or blunderbuss for the lows. Other suggestions would be great too as long as they can be found for 100 bucks or preferably less.

  2. Ajak


    Mar 31, 2012
    Bern, Switzerland
    I only own the ODB-3 (actually two of them :D), so I can't tell you about the other pedals.
    I just want to warn you that the ODB-3 probably sounds like crap (IMO) IF you use a DI. Through an amp it sounds really awesome (it doesn't go well with every brand though) and in one of my bands I leave it on for maybe 98% of the playing time. I love it so much I even got a second one. I bring a mic to these gigs.

    Of the amps I've used it with it sounded good with the Ashdowns (various models), the Peavey VB-2, a Line 6 combo and it sounded horrible with SWRs (also various models) and a Markbass combo.

    Hope that helps. Cheers
  3. The MXR M80 is a very good one. I used it for a couple of years, and have always been satisfied. The DI is also quite good.You can get quite a lot of different tones from it. Sounded better for me than the ODB-3.
    I tried the MXR Bass Overdrive once, and didn't really like it.
  4. russpurdy


    Apr 16, 2013
    Thanks guys. Can you get a really bright cutting tone from the m80 like you would with the Boss? I'd run the boss into my Yorkville head and then pull a DI post EQ from the head.
    Figured the m80 DI would be good to have if I ever need it.
  5. Ajak


    Mar 31, 2012
    Bern, Switzerland
    I tried the DI from the head post EQ and that was even worse than the DI right after the ODB-3. But I have to say that I adjusted the EQ to get a good sound out of the speakers not for the DI. Maybe a speaker-sim would do the trick but I haven't tried and I don't know if your amp has one or not.

    If you don't have the opportunity to try them out in your setup I'd go with one of the other pedals, since the ODB-3 is a bit unpredictable. I just tend to be lucky with that sort of stuff. :D
  6. AndyLES


    Aug 25, 2008
    New York
    I use an MXR M80 as an "always on" pedal, dialed in for a little grit and compression, and then the ODB-3 (gain low, with a little bit of drive blended in, volume and tone controls set for unity) at certain points for heavy drive.

    I tried, and sold, the Bass big muff - frustrating pedal.
  7. Darknut

    Darknut Supporting Member

    Apr 4, 2009
    I've had 2 different ODB-3's both modded ... I used the first one stock for a while but never liked it much. I did the Wampler mod on it & it was 100% better but I ended up trading it off. The one I have now has the Monte Allums Tri-gain mod & its one of my fave dirt pedals ever! I parallel blend the ODB-3 with a Wampler Euphoria with a Badger Schism.
  8. jking138


    Oct 6, 2013
    I found that my ODB3 always sounded harsh, not warm at all, unless you set it really dark. Even the clean side of it with the blend always sounded clanky.

    The M-80 however is much more tweakable, the OD isn't to everyone's taste but is very usable, and it retains punch better IMO. The DI might come in useful sometime as well as a backup.
    Also the 'additional lineout' on the MXR is not effected by the pedal, so you could run that to the amp for a clean tone, DI out for the dirt and have your second amp for the fuzz. Effectively a Tri-amp set up, each with dedicated tones.
    I can't see any problem cutting through with that.
  9. ric4682

    ric4682 Supporting Member

    Jul 2, 2008
    Save up a few more bucks and get the Aguilar Agro! That pedal DESTROYS with sweet, punchy, grindy tone.
  10. Try Ibanez Bottom Booster BB9 pedal.
    It's not a special for bass, but when I borrow it from my guitarist I've just desided to buy it.
    I'm not looking for hard distorted metal sound like Cliff Burton, so most drive pedals I tested before was to angry for me.
    BB9 gave me light overdrived sound without lowcuts (as the Tube Screamer do).
    MXR M80 and ODB-3 seems me a little sanding.
    Now I have to sold BB9 and so I'm using built in dist/drive from my EHX BassMetaphors. It sounds satisfactory, but have no controls - only one dist level knob.
  11. DagoMaino


    Feb 1, 2013
    I have and love the M-80... but it wouldn't be my only OD pedal. You are correct that it does have the "cutting dirt" down and much better IMO than the ODB-3. I find it nice to have a cold, cutting OD and a warm smooth OD (Joyo UD or Wampler Ecstacy) in my arsenal, especially for how they stack with other effects.