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delay for bass guitar ?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by jazzbass64, Dec 29, 2006.

  1. jazzbass64


    Jan 8, 2006
    I consider buying a looper and some models integrate a delay/echo effect : akai headrush, line6 dl4.
    What delay effects can do with the bass guitar sound ?
    Is it possible to set a delay to sound close to a reverb or a chorus or is it just the echo stuff ?
    If some of you have records in mind to illustrate the delay with a bass it would be cool !!
  2. Nils


    Oct 9, 2006
    Stockholm, Sweden
    There are probably people that answer your question better, but I'll try. First of all I think all delays can handle bass, at least all digital ones, which is probably what you're looking for, else you'd ask specifically for an anologue or tape delay.

    I guess you could make delay sound reverb-ish, but they're quite different as reverbs usually simulates how it would be playing in a large room or a tile set one or simulate spring or plate reverbs, all of which has different characteristics. A delay on the other hand (a digital one at least) just repeats your original signal. If you set the repeat time very low you'll get something like a reverb but if you want reverb, buy reverb.

    And to make it sound chorus-y you'd have to double your signal and detune one of them a bit and play that with your clean one, which I guess only choruses and flangers can do without over the top tweaking.

    I think a delay on bass is used on Schism with Tool together with distortion and a Whammy. It's a long song, but well worth a listen.
  3. Foamy


    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    I use just one of those el cheap-o dano fab delays, and I set it up mostly for a slight slap-back type of echo, but it can also sound reverbish. Great way to do it, and since I don't care much for echo on bass, the price is about what I'd want to pay. $15 well spent.
  4. EricF

    EricF Habitual User

    Sep 26, 2005
    Pasadena, CA
    A delay is certainly a viable tool for bass, but how use it is up to you. A simple delay pedal can be used for ambient effects (reverb-ish), or echoes, or a self-oscillating noise-generator. Looper features allows you to record a passage and play it back again as you play over it and/or add more layers.
  5. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I prefer a Boss DD-6... a bit on the expensive side but has a tap tempo built in (the most useful feature IMO) but I've noticed most digital delays sound great with bass, it's just a matter of features that make one better or worse suited than another.
  6. DbNBassist


    Aug 12, 2006
    +1 (ive always wanted to do that)
  7. 12bass


    Jan 2, 2003
    Victoria, Canada
    The usefulness of delay on bass is a matter of taste. It might be more easily used in a solo context, or as a highlight effect in a section of a song.

    A few years back I recorded an album using 12-string bass and delay. There are some samples on my website. At the time I was using an Ibanez DD-700, but more recently I purchased a Boss DD-20. The DD-20 does up to 23 seconds of delay or loop sampling. For me, the big improvement was the tap tempo feature, which allows me to play in sync with the band.

    From the looks of it, the DD-20 ($180 if you look around) is only $20 more than the DD-6. The DD-20 has quite a few more features, including my favorite, modulation, which allows slightly chorused delays. Using short modulated delays, the DD-20 can also produce chorus, flanger, and Leslie speaker effects. Between the two, I'd go with the DD-20 (I did!).

    FWIW, many people consider the DL-4 more user friendly if looping is your main priority.
  8. CDuff


    Sep 14, 2002
    I second the Boss DD-6 suggestion, and add the Boss DD-3.

    I just ordered a Behringer DD100 from Thomann because I'm not in a band so I can't really justify the expense of the Boss pedal. Should be here tomorrow, I might write a review or leave a bit of feedback in this thread.
  9. Crabby


    Dec 22, 2004
    my 80's era DD3 sounds great on bass and I use it a lot to add a nice ambiant effect to bass mostly when just jamming on my own. It sucks a little tone when off but when used it retains the low end well and sounds quite warm.
  10. Cory


    May 16, 2004
    I use my vintage Ibanez AD-9 analog delay from my guitar pedal board. I works really good!
  11. Danelectro Wasabi (no longer made but can be found). They sound more warm than Boss DD3-6 and 20 and also have tap tempo.

    Other than that, the TC Elctronics Vintage Delay sounds amazing and has tap tempo.
  12. Standalone


    Jan 17, 2005
    New Haven
    A long time ago I picked up the Electro Harmonix Deluxe Memory Man. It's analog, very full sounding, and can be set for a pretty long delay.

    They're expensive ($230?) these days-- can't remember what I paid for mine ten years ago.

    The other night, a friend was over and I was at the controls of the memory man while he played odd bleeps creeps and sweeps on my moog synth. The memory man is versatile enough that I was happy just playing *it* as its own instrument. Nothing like having that feedback set right up towards the edge of melt down...!

    EHX stuff is fun to have. Might just turn you into an analog fan.
  13. 12bass


    Jan 2, 2003
    Victoria, Canada
    FWIW, the DD-20 is somewhat unique in that it has a tone control, if a darker delay tone is what you want. The analog and tape simulations are somewhat darker sounding than the regular digital delays.
  14. SpankyPants

    SpankyPants That's Mr. SpankyPants to you.

    Aug 24, 2006
    Brooklyn, NY
    I vote for the DD-20 or the Echo Park.

    The DL-4 is riddled with manufacturing problems, and it will crap out on you. I guarantee it.
  15. iualum


    Apr 9, 2004
    ...I have 3 delays in my arsenal: the DLS Echo Tap, Boss DD-20, & Guyatone MD-3...all are excellent...

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