1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Distortion Dilemma!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by bikeplate, Apr 17, 2006.

  1. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    I need some help, people. I play a ton of gigs and would like a distortion or overdrive pedal I can use for some of our heavier songs. Here is my dilemma.

    I love my tone. Its punchy, round, sits great in the mix. Everytime I try a distortion pedal, it thins me out. I hate it. I've owned an EBS multidrive, amongst other things. Nothing seems to work. Just tried an analogman tweaked tube screamer. Same results. Unhappy!

    How can I retain my punch and bass response while adding some dirt? Any ideas? Thanx in advance

  2. Smallmouth_Bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    I personally love the overdrive/distortion of the SansAmp BDDI. Played with a pick, it's super gritty but it blends really well in a band situation.
  3. in my experience, the best results came from blending a really horrible sounding overdrive/distoriton sound from one amp with my clean sound coming from another...everything i love about my clean tone stays there and i'm just adding grit on top of that
  4. dave120


    Jun 27, 2005
    Central Florida
    My MXR M-80 lets you blend in a distortion sound with the clean signal so it almost sounds layered, like 2 separate signals coming from the speakers. It gives you all the grit you can handle while maintaining as much of the bottom end as you want.

    Try one out, if you like the distortion sound it has (some people do, some don't) it might be along the lines of what you're looking for.
  5. yeah, a blend would be the way to go imo, i believe there is also the loooper option (although he doesn't appear to be taking orders) where you could take whatever distortion, and then blend in a clean signal with your loooper (of course, make sure it has the blend control :))
  6. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    Thanx guys. Gonna try a Sansamp first. My singer has one in his studio and he likes it. He's gonna let me try it out next gig

  7. dannoman

    dannoman Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2004
    AMPEG SVP BSP ran through your effects loop and a footswitch.
  8. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    I have a Sans Amp and have mixed emotions about it...it really adds a cool thickness to my tone, but adds a lot of color, as well. That's why I'm torn.

    I also have a Fulltone BassDrive and think it's fantastic for adding mild to medium distortion without robbing your tone of your bass' fundamental characteristic tone.
  9. Ron Now

    Ron Now

    Sep 3, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    Endorsing Artist: Fuzzrocious Pedals
    It is kind of expensive but the Hughes and Kettner Tube Factor pedal is the best (IMHO) It has two channels, a really dynamic tube overdrive channel and a higher gain distortion channel. The unit provides tons of bass and your original tone remains intact (especially in the OD mode). I am a bit of a distortion nut and try out any one I can get my hands on but the TF is the only one that really satisfies what I am looking for in my bass tone.
  10. mactac

    mactac Supporting Member

    Nov 28, 2005
    Victoria, BC, Canada
    unibass.... leaves your tone intact & octaves up before it distorts so it doesn't muddy up your tone.

    sounds amazing in a live mix

    ...and i just happen to have one left for sale :)
  11. Adam Barkley

    Adam Barkley Mayday!

    Aug 26, 2003
    Jackson, MS
    If you get the chance, try a BJF Blueberry. It's the only overdrive that I've tried where I didn't experience any low end loss. Also, with the tone in extreme settings the pedal will add low end.

    The only problem with the pedal is it's rarity and price.
  12. old_skool


    Aug 17, 2000
    Milwaukee, WI
    Another vote for Fulltone Bassdrive. Two channels, a lot of nice control. I love mine. Its worth the try, IMO.
  13. Smallmouth_Bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    The SansAmp has a blend knob too. At least the programmable one does anyway.
  14. ArwinH

    ArwinH run rabbit run

    Dec 1, 2005
    Southern California
    I love my fulltone bass drive.

    I also love my boss ls-2 because it'll bring new life to cool pedals, I can mix in my clean segnal for punch and fundamental and that way I can incorporate pedals that rob me of my punch and fundamental, but sound oh so cool
  15. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    Wow guys. Great ideas. Gonna see if I can try a few of these. Thanx again

  16. Willem


    Dec 26, 2005
    Xotic BB Preamp, I said it before :)
    quite versatile IMO, doesn't loose low end and I have the feeling it blends a little from itself: I hear my tone + (mild to serious) grit.
    Am considering a blender too though, feel I drown in the guitar distortion (2 heavily distorted guitars) so I want to add more clean signal.
  17. +1 on blending.

    I run a Chandler Tube Driver (a traditional rack guitar tube distortion) in my SWR's effects loop and I set the amps's effects blend to just about 60% when running the distortion - it sounds really nice. The resulting tone is plenty distorted but I still have enough low end and punch to keep it sounding full. Effects blend is the bomb!
  18. BadB


    May 25, 2005
    AZ, USA
    There are plenty of routes you can take to get a distortion sound that you like. When you record, though, most always you would have multiple bass tracks: i.e. one clean, and one distorted. The same holds true for live use. One amp clean, one distorted. Try it and you'll hear what I'm saying. It's a pain to carry the gear and set it up, but the rewards are worth it.
  19. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    Its best to blend in some clean low end.
  20. TaySte_2000


    Jun 23, 2001
    Manchester, UK
    Endorsing Artist: Mojohand, Subdecay, Overwater, Matamp
    I'd recommend

    Xotic BB Bass Preamp for those slight bit of grit tones.

    Crowther XLF Hotcake for medium distortion.

    Tech 21 XXL Bass for all out heavy distortion.

    Hope this helps

Share This Page