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Effects loop question

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Truktek2, Mar 18, 2011.

  1. Truktek2


    Sep 5, 2008
    Queens, NY
    Can someone tell me the difference between plugging an outboard preamp between the bass and the amp or using the effects loop? I've heard the effects loop bypasses the eq and the amps preamp. What are (if any) the advantages to that? Or should I just use my ears to decide? Opinions please :)
  2. BassMonstrum


    Mar 7, 2008
    To bypass the amps preamp you will have to do the following:

    Plug bass in outboard preamp...
    Then plug outboard preamp to amps effect return.

    That way your sound will be shaped by the outboard preamp alone.
  3. look in the manual for you amp, it should have a block diagram. Generally an effects 'send' comes from out of the preamp and the 'return' goes into the power amp. It's the same as a 'preamp out' and 'power amp in' jacks, just a different name.

    So like BassMonstrum said if you want to bypass the units preamp plug your outboard pre into the effects return.

    There's also nothing wrong with going outboard preamp>preamp>poweramp if you like the sound.
  4. Truktek2


    Sep 5, 2008
    Queens, NY
    Thanks for the info guys. So I'd imagine if I use the send and return of the effects loop, that would be the same as if I plugged my bass into the outboard preamp and then my amp correct?
  5. BassMonstrum


    Mar 7, 2008
    Not exactly...

    There are three options:

    1. Bass ---> outboard preamp ---> amps input:
    Your outboard preamp will be coloured by your amps eq.

    2. Bass ---> outboard preamp ---> amps effect return:
    Your outboard preamp will be your sound, while the amps eq/preamp will be bypassed.

    3. Bass ---> amps input. Preamp out to fx return and fx send to preamp in:
    Your amps eq will be coloured by your outboard preamp.
  6. madmatt


    Apr 28, 2009
    It also depends on YOUR amp in question.
    I have a Hartke amp and the Effects Loop is before the onboard EQ. I also have a GK amp and the Effects Loop is after the onboard EQ.
    Good luck.
  7. BassMonstrum


    Mar 7, 2008
    That is absolutely correct, madmatt! I have two GK-amps, so I'm used to having the effects loop after the onboard eq.
  8. Truktek2


    Sep 5, 2008
    Queens, NY
    Thanks, that's what I needed to know. Now I just have to experiment to see what I like. :)
  9. Jimmy74


    Nov 21, 2010
    Hi all, my first post in this forum. Got a question here.

    How can I do to have the option/flexibility to switch between the amp's onboard eq (before the efx loop) and a bass eq pedal in the loop, other than getting a 2 channel amp?

    I understand that the sound get from using a outboard preamp will be color if the amp eq is not set flat, or the way around. Please help.
  10. GrowlerBox


    Feb 10, 2010
    Nude Zealand
    The Markbass F1 is also set up with effects loop before EQ (i.e. you don't bypass it).
  11. trueno87

    trueno87 Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2010
    pluging in the preamp in the effects return bypass the amps eq for DIing it aswell?? (do i make sense lol)
  12. If the FX loop is after the EQ, sure (assuming the DI is after the preamp, which it should be). If nothing goes into the EQ, it doesn't EQ anything!
  13. trueno87

    trueno87 Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2010
    OK, im planing to get a couple of preamps that have no DI, and i usually use an amp that has a DI so i was wondering how to JUST get the sound of the preamp and not the amp itself
  14. Yep, in that case just pre>FX return.