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Effects for unusual setup

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by DaveSill, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. DaveSill

    DaveSill Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2012
    I posted this in the Live Sound forum and someone suggested I try here for effects/pedals advice.


    First, some background. I'm a fairly crappy player in a hobby band that plays one or two gigs per month. We mostly play restaurants, where we don't want to make conversation and ordering impossible, so our volume is well below the pain threshold. We're often cramped for space so minimizing bulky equipment is necessary. The drummer plays electronic drums, which gives us good control over our volume. We generally play through our own gear, which is a PA mixer, power amp (for monitors), and powered mains/subwoofer. My "rig" is currently my bass plugged into a Zoom B2 which is plugged into the mixer. No amp, no cab.

    That works pretty well except there are times when I can't hear myself well enough. I don't have my own monitor, but I don't think our configuration allows customizing the monitor mixes and I don't want to subject everyone else to loud bass in their monitors.

    I'm also looking to improve my effects set-up. I've got a few settings on the B2 that work well for most of our material but I haven't been able to find a good fuzzy distortion that isn't lacking underlying thump. I'd also just like more flexibility than I can get with just the B2. Of course, I'd like to spend as little as possible while still getting decent quality.

    I think I'd like something like:

    bass --> "pedal board" ----+----> mixer
                               \----> powered wedge
    At first I thought maybe a Bassbone could be the basis of the pedal board, hanging the B2 off the effects loop, XLR output to the mixer, unbalanced output to the wedge, but the Bassbone doesn't do distortion. Of course, I could add a distortion pedal to the effects loop, but given my budget and my playing ability, that might be going overboard.

    Then I thought maybe a VT Bass DI could do the trick, but the output to the monitor would be just a pass-through, and the pedal has no effects loop.

    For the wedge I'm thinking of the 10" Seismic Audio that sells on eBay for $200.

    So... Does it sound like I'm on the right track or is there some fatal flaw with this approach that I'm missing? Is there a better way to do what I want to do? Is there a single device that does all I need plus distortion?

    Any other advice?
  2. jking138


    Oct 6, 2013
    I would suggest the Zoom B3, it gives you more flexibility and slightly better effects, as well as OD or fuzz and you can maintain a clean signal for clarity. You get to keep your sounds, as the B2 and B3 share emulations, but still a compact package.
    As for the monitor situation...
    The XLR can still go to the mixer and the jack output to a powered monitor if you want. Alternatively, check out in ear monitors, not used them myself, but they could offer you better audibility without interfering with the front of house sound.
  3. DaveSill

    DaveSill Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2012
    Hmm... B3... Hadn't thought of that. Looks pretty good and the price is right. I guess the lack of an effects loop just means that any effects pedals I add would have to be chained before the B3?

    Thanks, jking!
  4. jking138


    Oct 6, 2013
    It holds 3 effects simultaneously, depends how many you plan on using, 3 for bass would usually be enough. Depending what effects you use with the B3 depends where you would put any other effects, either before or after, which ever sounds best.
    The OD and fuzz on the B3 aren't the best, but you have a lot of flexibility with them and most audiences won't have any idea.