Chorus Pedal and Octave Pedal

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Joe Milo, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. Joe Milo

    Joe Milo

    Nov 1, 2009
    Geneva Ohio

    We lost our lead guitar player and now only play with one guitar in the band......I was wondering what you guys may think about using a chorus pedal or octave pedal.....Is it possible to use both at the same time or would that tone be unbearable? I'm looking for ways to "beef" up or thicken the bands sound since we lost one guitar player.

    I am looking at different chorus pedals right now and I have my eyes on the Tech21 Bass Boost Chorus......MXR M83..........EBS Unichorus.....

    I know nothing about octave pedals but thought maybe it may help fill in the gap having lost a guitar? Is that thinking correct? Better yet, what application would an octave pedal best be used for?
  2. Irtemed


    Apr 6, 2009
    Here's an example of an octave in funk:
  3. René_Julien


    Jun 26, 2008
    This kind of question comes up often, and I have a harsh opinion on this.
    Using effects to fill the gap of a (missing second) guitar is a really bad idea.

    Use effects only if you think it can add something nice to your role as BASS player. Not as pseudo rhythm guitar.

    When the guitar is playing lead, then it's your time to shine as rhythm section. (Or whatever style you can play to support your guitarist... heck, even steal some lead play with him.)

    You either need a second guitarist, or don't and be a trio.
    There is nothing in between.
    And it depends which music you play and what direction your band wants to go.

    Sorry, this is all just in my humble opinion and experience.

    My first band was a trashmetal powertrio, and I used a lot of distortion. But, because that's how we wanted the role of the bass to be. I would have used distortion even with a second guitarist. (And get lost in the mix... yeah, we were not that great.)

    That said, some advice on the effects you want to explore. ;)

    I was never a fan of chorus on bass. (Sorry, I'm really not grumpy. :))
    I prefer tremelo as alternative to where another bassist might use chorus. Depending how you use tremolo it can create a mellow sound. (With a bit of delay).

    Lot's of choruses out there. The one I did use for a while was the BOSS CE-5. I liked it better than the bass version.
    Easy to find pedal.
    Hundreds of choruses out there, sky is the limit when it comes to price and function.

    My favourite octave pedals are MXR Bass Octave Deluxe (analog) and EHX POG (Digital).

    And sure, you can use octave and chorus togheter. :)
    It may sound like crap, or it may sound awesome. Go out there and try it.

    All IMO, IME and YMMV.

  4. Baird6869

    Baird6869 LET'S GO BLUE JAYS...(in 2016)...LET'S GO!!

    I do like chorus for bass and do use one quite a bit. Mostly for mellow arpeggio stuff over clean guitars and possibly during a guitar solo to fill out the sound. Oh, the Tech 21 Bass Boost Chorus is my favourite. Great pedal.

    I also love my MXR Bass Octave Deluxe, which I use sparingly. Some funk stuff and a few songs that I like to play higher up the neck than usual (Day Tripper would be one example).

    Both together? Not very often for me. Not a fan of chorus and octaver together.

    It is important to remember that most octaves don't track well below the C on the A string. So basically the first 7 positions of the E string and first 2 on the A are unusable with most octave pedals.
  5. I love my octave. It can really help fatten things up in certain spots.

    However, in the past when I've played in a 3 piece setting, I've always gotten the most use out of adding more grit/overdrive to my tone. Depending upon the style of music you play, you may want to give that some thought.
  6. Qlanq


    Jul 9, 2007
    I used a set of bass pedals a lot for this. Keeping the straight notes on them and then the drummer and myself could have a bit interplay whilst the guitarist showed off. Sorry....I meant solo.
    I used a lot of chords as well to fatten it all up.
  7. torza


    Sep 20, 2005
    I would ABSOLUTELY recommend both types of effects to help thicken/color up the sound. I play in a trio as well, and use octave in just about every song when it needs that extra "oomph".

    That being said, I would highly recommend Boss OC2 for the octave (use only Octave 1 knob and do not play below B on the E string). It's natural, thick, and synthy sounding. I wouldn't even play another gig without it.

    As for chorus, I use a Boss CE-5. There might be better things out there, but I've had it for a while and it gets the job done. Can be subtle or trippy.

    Good luck!
  8. adamsmatthewj


    May 4, 2013
    I personally believe you're on the right track, I play in a keys/bass/drums trio so I use a ton of effects to fill the sound out

    Octaver gets used a ton, that's my fav effect. An old Boss OC-2 is my best friend and favorite pedal

    For chorus, it's gotta be a really flexible chorus pedal cause it real easy to sound like a bad 80's bass if u just turn on a chorus. I use the tc electronic corona chorus cause the toneprint abilities make it so tweakable it's not even funny! (Gotta remove all that sea-sick warble, that's usually what makes bass chorus sound bad)

    When I put those two pedals together it gets a nice smooth synthy tone, I use that sound a lot

    The other thing I use a ton is delay. It's a really underrated pedal for bass. Has to be used right, but it is probably my second most-used sound after the octaver

    Adding warm grit like a tube od is super useful for filling the sound out on more driving parts, I like the OCD or any of it's clones cause that tone knob makes it nicely tweakable

    Reverb is also way underappreciated on bass, it can add so much "air" to your sound
  9. My 'default' patch on my Zoom B2 [ie: the patch I use all the time, except when I'm using something more drastic] has just a touch each of compression, octave, flange and distortion. The flanger settings are quite subtle, very shallow and slow, similar to a chorus. So I think you're on the right track, too. I play in a power trio, so having a hint of effects does help to thicken the sound some.
  10. forrestjams


    May 21, 2009
    Dumb question: Some of the pedals mentioned are guitar pedals. Do they really work for bass? Especially a low 5th string?
  11. It´s possible use them together. There´s not limits. You can go as far as you taste, sense or imagination takes you. Sometimes some musical situations it seems being an excuse for puttins some limits to the creativity to use the effects. But you can break this "not written rule" just to be your self. Many times we´ve heard some kind of effects in the basses that they seemed that they was so stranger or even wrong at first sight. But it seems that we´ve learned to apreciate this effect in this song and becaming in part of this song too.

    If your 3 choices are Tech21, MXR and EBS, I´d go to the Tech21 Bass Bost Chorus with no doubt, for me the best.:thumbsup: It sounds pretty good, and iIt´s the lonely one that has a detune, very usable for my taste.

    I coudn´t explain it better. I think the same. It´s more interesting for me finding an effect that it fits well in a good thinking bass line with good taste that trying emulate or mimic a second guitar. ;)
  12. TerribleLiar23

    TerribleLiar23 Dynamics. Dirt. Done. Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2011
    Gluey Porch
    Just to touch on the chorus models you listed; I have had both the EBS and MXR. I found the MXR to be much more beneficial because you have more shaping options then the two knob EBS. Both have flanger. The EBS has pitch modulation, but I never found a use for that. I haven't tried the Tech 21, but it is pretty popular around here, and I own other T21 products that are great. In my opinion, chorus can be an always on pedal if used judiciously. Others will disagree, but it can be. I don't have a chorus on always, but to add texture to your sound its not out of the question.
  13. forrestjams


    May 21, 2009