Help Needed With Bass Compressor

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Face, May 18, 2007.

  1. Face


    Jan 7, 2007
    Devon, UK
    Hi there, can anyone please give me a bit more information regarding using bass effects? Here goes. I've purchased a new EA iAmp 800 & the amp has Series & Parallel effects loops & I've just purchased a new Demeter Compulator to bring some control to my slap technique. I'm experiencing different responses depending I where I place the effect.

    Firstly, plugging my bass directly into the pedal, then into the amp the pedal seems to be very responsive (doing what is says on the box)! Then I plug the pedal into the Parallel effects loop & this is where things being to change. You can hear that the compressor is working but does not have the same response & when I adjust the settings on the pedal they appear not to do too much. I’ve tried setting the parallel effect level to 10 but does not seem to change that much. Thirdly, when the pedal is set-up through the series loop all I seem to get is distortion? No matter how I set the levels on the series input or the pedal there is distortion.

    Why is this? Why is the pedal not performing the same for each connection? Why is the series distorted however I seem to change the settings?

    I've contacted Gary at EA & he said that either way is ok but he would recommend using the effects loop. He said that if I was getting distortion that I should change the levels, but as mentioned the series still distorts.

    Any help would be very much appreciated in helping me get more of an understanding to the above problems.

    Many thanks,

  2. nad

    nad 60 Cycle Humdinger

    Sep 22, 2005
    Looks like you answered your own question, if it works that way, don't mess with success. :cool:

    I'm not a fan of using effects loops, mostly because I use pedals. If you were using rackmount gear, the line levels are different than with pedals, and effects loops are more beneficial.
  3. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    Westchester, NY
    Yeah...I'm pretty sure the Demeter is an instrument level effect, and your FX loop is line level. The two don't mix very well...
  4. Sir Edward V

    Sir Edward V Not Actually Knighted... Yet!

    Dec 11, 2006
    ::Blows Bongo-Whistle(Patent-Pending)::

    Bongo should be here shortly, he'll take care of ya.
  5. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger

    Feb 21, 2006
    Boise, ID, USA
    +1 to not using it in the loop. IMO, most pedal compressors I've tried seem to not like my effects loop. It's probably why they're not rack units :p

    I haven't tried my EBS MultiComp in the loop, though... but I'm not motivated to. That one is a pedal I know for sure won't work all that well in the loop because of its design.
  6. EricF

    EricF Habitual User

    Sep 26, 2005
    Pasadena, CA
    I don't have my Compulator in front of me, but I believe that there is a hole on the left side of the enclosure that gives you access to an internal trim pot for matching the pedal to the input level. In an effects loop (after the preamp, before the power amp), the pedal will see a higher level signal (line level) than if it was in front of the preamp (instrument level). Because of this, you are pushing the unit into compression all the time and causing clipping of the signal (distortion) unless you adjust it correctly for the level of the input signal.

    I find the Compulator to work wonderfully when placed before my amp, and before any other OD/distortion pedals in my signal chain.

    If you want a compressor in the amp's fx loop (a prefectly acceptable solution), I'd suggest buying a rack-mount unit intended for that purpose.
  7. Face


    Jan 7, 2007
    Devon, UK
    Thanks all for your replies that's great! It seems then that the best way is direct into the input. Even though it does sound better going straight into the input I just wanted to make sure that my effect loop was ok & it seems from reading your responses what's been happening is normal.

  8. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Yep, all of y'all (especially EricF) took care of it without me just fine. Now I can retire! :)

    +1 to Eric and the others above.
  9. SpankyPants

    SpankyPants That's Mr. SpankyPants to you.

    Aug 24, 2006
    Brooklyn, NY
    Dibs on the suit.
  10. DaveAceofBass

    DaveAceofBass Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2004
    Charlotte, NC
    With my pedals, the effects loop on my amps are useless.

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