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effects loop - what is its purpose

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by nickname, Nov 14, 2005.


  1. nickname

    nickname

    Jan 22, 2005
    I have continually read people saying to plug their pedals into the effects loops. what exactly is the purpose and use for the effects loop. what type of devices are suppose to be used for this?
     
  2. chaosMK

    chaosMK

    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    Ive never quite understood this either. I just plug my boxes into the input.
     
  3. I use my effects loop with my rack-mounted EQ. This allows you to use pro-grade equipment (stuff you would use in the studio) on your rig, where-as you could not use the same hardware by just plugging your bass into it. Pedals, however, are designed to operate on instrument-level signals. In theory you could plug as much hardware in there as you wish, ie: compression, EQ, Reverb, Chorus etc. The signal leaves the head(before getting to the AMP stage), goes to the hardware, then returns from the hardware back into the head and off to the AMP stage.


    - Andrew
     
  4. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    The effect loop on an amp is generally before the power amp but after the preamp, so you can use tone shaping on your head before sending to such units as extraneous EQ or compression. For the most part, stompboxes should be used in line between the bass and the amp.

    Effects loops can sometimes be found on pedals too, depending on the pedal, sometimes between two stages of overdrive, or something like that.

    Any other questions?
     
  5. nickname

    nickname

    Jan 22, 2005
    what are some devices that i would want to use for my effects loop. As far as i understand, the effects loop is used to shape the sound before it is shaped by the amp.

    for what purposes, and what types of devices would i use for this? what devices would u recommend looking at? when would using this effects loop be necessary?
     
  6. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Correction: AFTER the preamp, BEFORE the power amp.

    Anything rackmounted that is designed to deal with line level signals should go here.
     
  7. nickname

    nickname

    Jan 22, 2005
    what products are available for such purposes? Would the aphex bass exciter be one?

    if anyone could list some products that use this effects loop, that would be greatly appriciated.
     
  8. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    The Bass Xciter would not be one.
    .
    As a general rule of thumb:
    If it's a stompbox, it's probably designed for instrument level, therefore goes between the instrument and amp
    If it's rackmounted, it's probably designed for line level, and should go in an effects loop.

    The Xciter is a stompbox, and therefore isn't well suited for use in the effects loop.

    Rackmount EQ's, reverb units, etc. would be suitable.
     
  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I have never noticed one iota of difference in the sound of an effect plugged between bass and amp vs. in the effects loop. The only thing I like having the loop for is being able to blend clean and effected signal.
     
  10. nickname

    nickname

    Jan 22, 2005
    what do u mean? u have the affected tone, and the regular tone both at once? like am i correct in saying that if i ran my Boss overdrive pedal thru the effects loop, i could have my clean tone as well as the distorted tone coming thru the amp?
     
  11. Droog

    Droog

    Aug 14, 2003
    PDX
    Sometimes you won't "notice" much, especially if you are only blending in a bit. On the other hand the signal is much stronger than that of your bass. So the potential to distort the input of the box is higher.

    As said before, generally a rack mounted effects device is intended for line level operation and so it would live in your effects loop. EQ's, compressors, time based effects such as reverb, delay, flange, phase and such. Typically you would use the blend knob for time based stuff and run it all the way open with dynamic effects (eq/compression etc..)
     
  12. Droog

    Droog

    Aug 14, 2003
    PDX
    Yes, but putting your boss in the effects loop may have undesirable side effects. It made my 250 sound like a buzzy crap box, which in fact it is not. The signal is much to hot.