EASY-TO-USE Multi Effects Unit for Bass?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by zmebass76, Jun 14, 2020.

  1. zmebass76

    zmebass76 Makin' bass faces since '92...

    Feb 17, 2013
    Nederland, Tx
    I'm looking for a multi effects unit that has your basic effects in an easy to use set up. I'm not interested in programming effects and tinkering with settings (I do realize that there will be a little tinkering involved though, no matter what I find). I'm looking at the two Boss units, ME-50B and GT-1B, so if anyone with experience using these guys can lead me in the right direction, I'd appreciate it. I'm also open to other brand suggestions, but I'm not open to Helix right now (it's way more than I need). Thanks in advance.
    OpposableThumbs likes this.
  2. Alien8


    Jan 29, 2014
    I haven't owned either, but I have been around effects a looooong time and am familiar with what these lines offer. I have owned both versions in guitar ages ago. Hard pass on the ME50b. Reasons are that I found it both limiting and missing the sound magic. The GT1b however is worth a look. It's far more flexible, connects to a PC to program and download sounds as well a firmware if they ever change it (which BOSS usually does a few times at release only). Between those two choices, GT1B.

    Line6 makes awesome stuff. Part of the reason I am an effects junkie and was able to learn sooo much was because of Line6. Every limitation I found in their products is removed in the next version, and Helix is the result of all of this effort. It's worth the price of admission and the time to learn.
  3. zmebass76

    zmebass76 Makin' bass faces since '92...

    Feb 17, 2013
    Nederland, Tx
    I just sold an HX Effects unit. The effects I needed didn't sound that great on bass and I didn't want to spend the time needed to customize it. If they made a bass unit, I'd look in to it.
    OpposableThumbs and Alien8 like this.
  4. Jase The Bass

    Jase The Bass Guest

    Sep 1, 2011
    If you like the knob tweeking of a stompbox, the ME-50B is a good choice. The sound quality is better on the GT-10B vs ME-50B. I just picked up the Mooer GE-300. I don't have enough time on it to tell you too much. I did use and liked the ToneCapture GTR, Blueno microamp, and E7 synth before getting the GE-300. Line 6... I know... but the Bass Pod is very easy to use and has MIDI.
    A few others that may have been forgotten about:
    Zoom B3N. I used the Zoom MS-60B and was impressed with the sound upgrades from the older 505 Zoom models.
    Boss ME-5B
    Maxon PUE5 Bass
    Some of those smaller vintage multi effects on tha Bay have a great sound.
    redwood and zmebass76 like this.
  5. filmtex


    May 29, 2011
    I've been using a GT-1B for a couple years now and it works great. Build quality is first class, and I like the patches I have been able to get. Out of the box it has quite a few patches that I liked, though a few tweeks gave me what I felt I really wanted. The Boss USB software is a nice interface and I have also used a program that I found out from a TB'er here- Katana FX FloorBoard.
    The GT-1B, Boss software and Katana are all highly recommended IMHO. YMMV.
  6. zmebass76

    zmebass76 Makin' bass faces since '92...

    Feb 17, 2013
    Nederland, Tx
    Thanks! Do you have any first-hand experience with any of those other units you listed at the end of your response?
  7. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Beware gear that uses software. I've had bad experiences with software support ending and it wouldn't run on a new computer or new OS. Roland/Boss is one of the mfrs who left me high and dry, also Zoom. As long as you're OK with not using the software, then fine.
  8. Hevy T

    Hevy T Supporting Member

    Jan 11, 2011
    Lethbridge, AB Canada
    I use both the Boss GT1B and Zoom B3n. Both are great. But for ultimate ease of use with no programming, go with the Tech21 bass fly rig. It has everything z bassist needs
    FronTowardEnemy, Yonni, DavC and 3 others like this.
  9. Most ‘FX’ don’t work for bass, they just degrade your signal.
    The only ‘FX’ I use are some stompboxes made for bass. And I use them sparingly.
    The two best dsp’s that I use aren’t even FX, an active D.I. and a tube preamp.
    I can record direct, and get a little ‘tube’ warmth.
    As for FX, an overdrive pedal, a stereo chorus, an octave divider, and an envelope filter
    is all I really use, and I play blues,R&B, funk,soul, and different styles of rock.
    Leave the silly stuff for the guitar players,
    OpposableThumbs likes this.
  10. I forgot all about the Zoom 505, I got one when they first came out.
    It was a little cheapie, sounded terrible through an amp, but was a cool
    little toy with headphones. I wouldn’t mind getting one, just to play with.
    Fun goofin’ around with it.
  11. roller

    roller Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    Reach out to Kevin Henretta and Henretta Engineering. He makes superb effects that are easy to use... and Kevin is a heckuva good guy. I've got a write-up of my Henretta Six Speed in the Reviews section on this site.

    Here's a link:

    Henretta Six Speed

    petch and zmebass76 like this.
  12. 57pbass

    57pbass Supporting Member

    Aug 1, 2004
    Bayside, New York
    I have the ME-50B for many years. I never use it or any other effects on gigs but I use it often at home. It’s a no brainer.. hi quality build, really easy to use with no drop down menus, great sounding effects and very reasonably priced.
    Everything you need to do is right on top of the board.
    Love the sound hold feature.
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2020
    Jazzish and zmebass76 like this.
  13. Zoom B3n. I have the earlier B3 and it’s been awesome for many years. B3n adds features the B3 lacked, like an aux in.

    It’s a Swiss Army knife for bass.
    OzzyGreg, Zymba, Alik and 3 others like this.
  14. alarius


    Feb 20, 2018
    My first multi was a Zoom B1 Four I purchased 2 months ago. Sounds good with both headphones and amp, is easy to use and it’s cheap. Haven’t used it on gig yet but I’m sure it will do the job.
    Mili likes this.
  15. zmebass76

    zmebass76 Makin' bass faces since '92...

    Feb 17, 2013
    Nederland, Tx
    Thanks! Are his effects for guitar or does he make some especially for bass?
    BigDanT likes this.
  16. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Look at Hologram. Do it. Don't be a stubborn mule, do it.
    OpposableThumbs likes this.
  17. TideSwing

    TideSwing Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2014
    Las Vegas
    Zoom B1 Four. I got mine used for $50 from the local GC back in the winter. Played a couple gigs with it. They are about $80 new. Like most Zoom products, it's easy to use. Also has built in drum machine to play to and a whole bunch of usable presets or you could make your own.

    HughC, OzzyGreg, Wolfhound32 and 4 others like this.
  18. roller

    roller Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    I suppose they're guitar effects... but wow, Ive been using them for a while and think they just sound marvelous with bass.

    zmebass76 likes this.
  19. zmebass76

    zmebass76 Makin' bass faces since '92...

    Feb 17, 2013
    Nederland, Tx
  20. bdplaid

    bdplaid Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2007
    This is a great choice, and i was thinking about it as I read your OP. I like it so much, that after I sold my first one, I bought another. In truth, I now use a more modular setup, individual effects and all that. But for a multi-effect the ME50B is hard to beat.

    You can get grazy with it if you want, devoid of menus to wade through. Or you can kind of use it as a pedalboard with distinct pedals. Very versatile.

    I really like the compression in the thing.
    Not so happy with the tracking of the octave, but it's definitely functional.
    Good EQ.
    I never use the distortion.

    Two slapping thumbs up on it.
    Jaycephas likes this.