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Effect Send / Return

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by MostlyBass, Jan 25, 2012.


  1. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    OK so I was playing with my toys - El Grande Bass Fuzz - MXR Envelope -> Headrush E2 through a markbass mini CMD 121.. and anything with the volume up and the headrush on sounded distorted. I tried using just that pedal, put in a new battery in my bass, different cables... anyways nothing changed... So I decided to try running the headrush through the amps send and return (i had always run everything in-line).... I left the other two effects inline - WOW what a difference - so much cleaner and the volume was more even...

    Any thoughts as to why?

    And what are your thoughts about running effects inline vs the send and return?

    And / or some effects inline and some through the send/return?

    Thanks!!

    Pete
     
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    It's all about the levels. There's detail here: Effects loops
    What my article doesn't explain, though, is why there would be distortion with the Headrush inline and not when in the loop. That needs investigation, but here's my guess: If you have the loop set to play back at your normal playing level, if you then play at your normal level on top of the loop, then you have just doubled the level of the signal feeding into your amp! So it would be the preamp stage of your amp that's distorting, if my guess is right. The reason then that there would be no distortion in the loop is because that's after the preamp stage, and the loop is designed to operate with a much higher signal level (line level).
     
  3. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    Thanks for the reply! It seems even if the Headrush is just set to delay rather than looping it can sound a bit 'farty' when I play hard or turn up the volume on my bass. This doesn't happen when it is in the effects loop.
     
  4. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    As an experiment, turn down the output volume of the Headrush and see if that fixes the farting. Also try turning down the input gain on your amp, OR using the input labeled "active".
     
  5. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    The output level of the Headrush had no impact.

    High Frequency damping did have an impact, but only when run inline. More damping=less distortion. No impact when run through the send and return.

    Is something faulty? Or is this unit just meant to be run through the send and return?

    Thank you for your time!!

    Pete
     
  6. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    I just sent an email to Akai support so we'll see what they have to say... It all just seems weird....
     
  7. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    After doing some more experimenting this morning, everything works and sounds AWESOME if all effects are sent through the amp's effect send / return. Running things inline did not provide the best sound. I'm using an active Soundgear SR505 (bartolini's) through a markbass mini cmd 121. Effects El Grande->MXR Envelope->Headrush E2. All cables are either George L or Monster. Battery in bass checked out good. All effects are being powered by a 1-spot.
     
  8. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    Now, where should I put my new MXR compressor? If these effects are in the effects loop, does placing the compressor inline work?
     
  9. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
  10. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    Your articles are great - I've read them several times... Just wanted to get input as I just got the compressor and the other effects sound better in the effects loop... but in the end it comes down to how it sounds...
     
  11. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Well yes, how it sounds, but the function of a compressor is based on the levels you feed it.
     
  12. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    I think I actually got the farty sound issue down to a dirty volume pot on the headrush... but I like the sound of my fuzz before my envelope but then that leaves me the issue of where to put the compressor - probably after the envelope.....
     
  13. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    this is what happens when you give a classical bassist too many toys :)
     
  14. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    My favorite sound so far
    Bass->Compressor->El Grande->Envelope->Amp
    then run the Headrush through the effects send/return
     

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