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Distortion pedal with great note articulation?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by slapstick13, Nov 2, 2010.

  1. slapstick13


    Feb 5, 2010
    Still on the quest for the right dirt pedal. Found most fuzz pedals too fuzzy/dont sit in the mix well. Want something very round and dirty that has great individual note articulation. Similar to a boss sd1 but with way more balls. Anything?
  2. christoph h.

    christoph h.

    Mar 26, 2001
    The Aguilar Agro works great for me. The Xotic BB preamp is cool, too, but it's more of an overdrive sound.
  3. I've found that in a mix, the source audio bass distortion is good for adding hair the the overtones while letting the fundamental still shine through, works great when our only guitarist takes a solo and the drummer and I have more space to fill up.
  4. My fuzz quest led me to a Hjart Muller Lo|Fat bass overdrive which I find articulate and dynamic. It's in the same family as the SD1 or Tube Screamer but better tuned for bass, it works great for chuggin' a bass line down low or punching out a solo or melody lick. On it's own it will not feedback but pushed by another drive it does nicely, I use a SD1.


    If you are a DIY kits are cheaper

  5. P-oddz

    P-oddz Supporting Member

    Apr 7, 2009
    Milwaukee, WI

    The Agro IME is very articulate.
  6. rratajski

    rratajski Commercial User

    Jul 1, 2008
    Mount Laurel, NJ
    A modded RAT pedal will do what you want. The double resistor mod lets one dial in articulation, especially as the distortion is rolled off.
  7. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    I like the AGRO a lot and the Pork Loin is a good one as well but my favorite is the Darkglass Microtubes B3K. Just got a chance to try it in a band mix and it was phenomenal.

    Of course, none of these are heavy distortions or fuzzes and are closer to the overdrive side of things, althought the Aguilar and B3K can get pretty nasty.

    But obviously the more clipping you have the more note definition you lose. Other than adding a clean blend it's hard to get great note definition when getting really distorted or fuzzy.

    But if i's heavy distortion you want, maybe the XXLB, Turbo (or modded) Rat or Landmine (with or without a blend loop) might be up your alley.
  8. I've recently picked up a Garmopat modded Vox V-830. It's awesome and has the best note articulation I've ever heard for bass distortion.
  9. gastric

    gastric Professional product tester for hire

    Jun 8, 2009
    Raleigh, NC
    Source Audio BETA tester
    If you want SUPER articulate look at a gated fuzz/dirt effect. You can control the crispness of the effect via the gate, keeps it from getting all spongey and flabby sounding. Some, like the Chunk Systems Brown Dog, can double as a synthy sound by cranking the gain and applying a really heavy gate.
  10. Darkglass

    Darkglass Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 10, 2008
    Helsinki, Finland
    Douglas Castro, Founder: darkglass.com
    Hello! I think the articulation will vary from the frequency response (pre, between and post clipping) but also from the controls... In my experience as a bassist, a good blend knob can sometimes work magic! Specially in high gain settings.


  11. Would the Tronographic Rusty Box fit into this category? Just curious to know if it has a similar output.
  12. blastjv


    Jan 8, 2010
    Philly Area
    AGRO, AGRO, AGRO!!!!!
  13. Jon Moody

    Jon Moody Commercial User

    Sep 9, 2007
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Manager of Brand Identity & Development, GHS Strings, Innovation Double Bass Strings, Rocktron
    I've actually had some good luck with the Fuzzhugger(fx) Arc Flash. Aside from having a slew of options at your disposal, I've found a lot of good overdriven tones that retain clarity.
  14. sk8


    May 10, 2007
    United Kingdom
    Boss ODB-3 works for me!
  15. slapstick13


    Feb 5, 2010
    SOOO, It turns out I already have exactly what Ive been looking for!!!!! Im definatly going to post, in a few weeks/whenever I find time somehow, a blind test on this pedal combo I figured out with my buddy last night at band practice that gives me pretty much the exact distortion sound in my head!!! I really think it will shock people.

    Ive already gone though a fulltone ocd, bass big muff, vt bass, fulltone bassdrive. All of these pedals failed to meet my expecations for bass distortion, weither it was sounding liek crap, or just not sitting well in my bands mix.

    Soooo; I had a boss sd1 (super overdrive guitar pedal) for about 10 years with guitar. Messed with it on bass but it drops lows A LOT. So I never considered it for bass, athough it had a great growl to it. I also had the bass overdrive odb3 that I abandoned and has just been sitting in my room because I didnt like the sound of it. Just kind of sounded like a static mess to me. HOWEVER, running the odb3 , all knobs at 0, EXCEPT bass at about 3 o clock(so Im using it as jsut a bass shelf), into the sd1 , I found my distortion sound. I turned what I would consider, 2 relativly crap pedals, into my sound and I have no need to look for more distortion...the end.
  16. Laurent

    Laurent Supporting Member

    May 21, 2008
    Napa, California
    Way Huge Swollen Pickle is impressive in terms of articulation.
    Out of the 3 fuzz pedals I own it's the best in this department.

    I would look at putting a compressor after what ever you choose as well.
  17. K2000


    Nov 16, 2005
    Add the B:assmaster (or any brassmaster clones I guess) to the list of fuzzes that retain individual note definition.

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