How many effects do you *actually* use?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by superheavyfunk, Dec 29, 2017.

  1. superheavyfunk


    Mar 11, 2013
    I like pedals. In fact, id go so far as to say that I love them. I like playing with new sounds and making instruments sound like things they're not supposed to.

    Over the years, I've amassed a collection that I'm quite proud of - there's very little overlap and all of them are quite useful at times... They've helped me break out of creative funks, even got me signed up with bands who were impressed with my sounds and ability to bring something new to the table! :thumbsup:

    Today after a jam, I got to thinking: Of the 16 or so pedals I currently own, I really only use about four of them on the regular, from gig to gig. The rest either sir in my board waiting to be used, or stay at home on my "toy shelf" to be played with when I'm home and without kids (which isn't very often).

    So how many of you all have multiple pedals that aren't being used? And how many of them are there?
  2. The only ones not ON all the time are the distortion and the BSW.
  3. Johnny Mac

    Johnny Mac Riff-finder General Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2005
    Springfield, MA
    I've amassed a small collection of pedals that aren't currently in use, simply because I haven't sold off anything I've purchased over the years. But every pedal that sits on my board is used on every single gig I play.
  4. Pbassmanca

    Pbassmanca In the pocket n' thumpy. So woody, so greasy...

    An MXR Octave pedal, an MXR envelope filter, and a small piece of soft, open cell foam under the strings at the bridge.
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  5. Basshappi


    Feb 12, 2007
    The number of pedals I use varies depending on which band I'm playing in.
    LowActionHero and bassbrad like this.
  6. Grumry


    Jul 6, 2016
    Sometimes when I'm stoned I just turn on all of them for the lols.
    fasto, Ellery, allenhumble and 25 others like this.
  7. TOOL460002


    Nov 4, 2004
    Santa Cruz
    I have two boards I don't use, so guilty here. Last band I used my BDDI, Future Impact, Empress Nebulous, and ZVex Vexter Fuzz Factory (and a custom Robot Factory 3ch Parallel Looper, if you count that as a pedal, which I do, as it was the backbone of my "sound").

    As far as pedals that I haven't gigged with in a while, well that's been a long list, but some I will never sell are as follows: Chunk Octavius Squeezer, Guyatone Ultron and Ultrem, Boss PS-3 and FZ-2, modded Moog MuRF, Maxon AF-9, Robot Factory Space Case Delay, and that's all the ones I can't get new, so they're keepers.
    Philly Watts and superheavyfunk like this.
  8. Korladis

    Korladis Inactive

    The pedals on my main board I use in various parts of either Catapult or Dustern songs, or in both bands.

    Boss TU-3 Tuner: Use this literally every time I play with a band.

    Korg Miku: Ridiculous pedal, but I do actually use it at one spot in a Catapult song, and at one spot in a Dustern song. Not sure how I'd get the weird sound any other way.

    EHX Ravish Sitar: I use this quite a bit in Catapult, for pretty significant parts of three songs, and a little bit more in a fourth.

    Dunwich custom muff fuzz: I use this a lot. In three Catapult songs, and basically whenever there's a guitar lead/solo in Dustern. I've even used it in Yesterday's News.

    Morley wah: I use this for lots of bass fills I want to stand out more. I use it during most songs in Catapult and Dustern, also a little bit in Yesterday's News.

    EHX Memory Toy: I use this for atmospheric sections and at the ends of some songs, usually together with...

    EHX Holy Grail Nano: Used together with the Memory Toy for ambient sections or endings. Or for noise, along with the Miku.

    Now, the pedals that aren't on my board:

    EHX Big Muff Pi: Old big box version. This used to be on my board, but its funky adapter, enormous size, and getting a custom pedal got it booted off. I keep it around as a spare now, and for possible recording or whatever else.

    Digitech Digiverb: Replaced by the Holy Grail Nano. Didn't like the EQ control. Not sure why I keep it around. I guess I feel like selling it would be more effort than it's worth.

    Boss TU-2 Tuner: Used to use it, but then got a TU-3. The latter tracks the low B and E better, and my TU-2 has a bent "Output" jack, so I have to use the "Bypass" jack instead, which doesn't serve as a mute. Kept as a spare.

    Sansamp/Tech 21 VT Bass: It's basically a backup so I can get a similar sound to my preferred tone on a borrowed amp.

    Danelectro Fab Tone: Was my first distortion pedal. It's broken. I don't know why I still have it.

    Danelectro Reverse Delay: Didn't really know what I was doing when I got it, as a teenager. Realized after I got it that I wanted a regular delay, and wasn't as savvy about return policies back then.

    Marshall Jackhammer: Main distortion for a long time. It's rather worse for wear and was retired after I started getting my main drive from my amp rather than from a pedal.

    EHX Green Russian Reissue: Putting it on my second board for Yesterday's News. Probably going to get a lot more use soon.

    DOD Boneshaker: Same as above. Intending on using it as a sort of dirty preamp.
    Ellery and superheavyfunk like this.
  9. I’m like this... I have around 20 pedals (mostly from chasing my dirt tone rabbit hole, or fun pedals I couldn’t work into a band situation). 8 of these are on the “fun board” that don’t get used... the 8 on the band board always get used. Trying to fit 9 on there next though for more dirt options!
  10. Being and Bass

    Being and Bass

    Apr 9, 2017
    Yes! I tend to sell effects I am not currently using and don't have a specific place for. So every effect on my current board setup is in use during composing or performing in some manner. The current board is a little small as I working with the trem envelope a lot.

    Boss TU-2: It's a tuner.
    Black Finger: Compressor/tube stage for warmth and headroom.
    Russian Muff: Extra compression and tracking dirt for...
    HOG2: Always on my board.
    Hot Wax: The extra thickening from the Hot Tubes is an always-on for me these days, with the Crayon for high-impact emphasis.
    Gate: All the gain is in the gate, to keep trem silent.
    Super Pulsar: Working on using it to break my signal apart and then sync in a clean bass signal.
    Superego+: Just got this and learning how to use it with Pulsar right now.
    Holy Stain: In the Ego's effect's loop for dirt and reverb on the frozen notes.

    I've got pedals not on my board and I just did a huge switch in pedals (my poor Metal Muff is finally gone) so I am still waiting for the last replacements (like my Cathedral and hopefully a modulator today). But yeah, I cannot imagine going to a gig or practice without a mini-board of 4 or 5 pedals and a wah (for me: compressor, both classic and modern OD, reverb, and the Superego+).
  11. Swimming Bird

    Swimming Bird

    Apr 18, 2006
    Wheaton MD
    My board(s) change constantly. I tend to be in improvisational sort of bands, so even if we're playing a riff or set chord structure I have the freedom to be in different registers with different sounds. I rarely play out with more than nine pedals (and tend to settle into three or four specific tones in practice or gig) but have close to 20 lying around. Mostly the big boxes with weird power and/or signal requirements (GR-20, RC-500, etc) get left at home, though I do try and use an appropriate pedal set for the gig.
  12. jchrisk1


    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    I've only just got back into effects over the past couple of years. It's been since the early 90's that I have used any at all. Back then, they were very unimpressive to me and did not sound very good. Wow! What a difference 20 years makes. Sounding good these days.

    Currently, I'm using
    Aguilar Octimizer
    3leaf GR2
    Boss lmb3
    Mooer ninety orange

    I still haven't found a dirt pedal I love. Been through a few of them. The SFT was close, but kind of fell off in the tone department. I may go for a SA OFD, as I would like a gated fuzz also. I'm hoping the OFD will cover all of my dirt needs. With two presets, it may work for me.
  13. Blaargh


    Apr 4, 2016
    I think I'm a little shy of 20 pedals.

    When I played bass in a black metal band I only really used a distortion, a chorus and a wah. I did have my whammy and reverb on my board to make keys sounds for one intro, but other than that they never really got any use- quite irritating given the size and weight of the whammy.

    Currently I'm starting a new stonery/doomy/psych rock type band with a friend, so I'm going all out. I only have two pedals I can see myself never using in a live situation- my Digitech Bass Driver and my Moog MF102; the former because it's junk and the latter because it's enormous. Between putting things in the loop of my Superego and having pedals always-on, I can avoid too much tap-dancing despite using a lot.
    Conor&Bass likes this.
  14. Bunk McNulty

    Bunk McNulty It is not easy to do simple things correctly Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2012
    Northampton, MA
    Signal chain: allthingsequal clean boost; EBS Multicomp; BBE sonic maximizer; no-name tuner. That's it. I have a Boss OC-3 that I might use for something someday, and an MXR micro-chorus that I bought for some reason long forgotten. I sold a Q-Tron and a Big Muff because they sounded good in rehearsal but were pretty wimpy on stage. Someday I'm gonna get an Unpleasant Surprise, just for fun.
  15. Plectrum72

    Plectrum72 Supporting Member

    Gig essentials (for me): tuner, fuzz, chorus.
    Regular use on gigs include the above plus: compressor, overdrive, preamps
    Seldom used on gigs, but fun anyway: octaves (drop, pitchfork), delay, phaser, reverb, envelope, synth
  16. Are we talking effects or pedals here? I would contend there’s a big difference. I have 15 pedals on my bass board. Of those, I consider 9 effects. Of the 9 effects, I use my GK Rails, B3K, Pharaoh Supreme, Pork Loin, Echo Puss, and Proton consistently. That leaves my MXR Bass Octave Deluxe, DOD Deep Freeze, and Joyo Flange seeing less time, but still occasionally being used for fun.

    If we count all the devices on my board, we need to add in my tuner, compressor, an HPF, two noise gates, and a switcher pedal, none of which are used as any sort of serious effect, just to manage my signal and to keep noise and booms to a minimum.

    If we’re talking total pedals owned, I’m probably around 60ish between 2 guitar boards, 2 bass boards, and a bunch of extra DODs (love DOD!) and other random pedals. Approximately 40 pedals are on boards.
    Korladis likes this.
  17. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    I do a lot of music for television and depending on what is needed, I use a mutli-effects pedal. I actually use it more for guitar than bass. I have never used effects on stage.
    Son of Wobble likes this.
  18. Lowendtech

    Lowendtech Happily trending in my own peculiar direction. Supporting Member

    I’ve gone from no pedals to 8, back down to none and have worked my way back to a bare minimum to get the sound that works for me. Simple is best in my case.
    Pedal train nano with
    Diamond bass comp - used to be always on but less so lately. Maybe 50% now.
    VT Bass DI - on at least 85% of the time.
    DSM Omnicabsim Deluxe - on pretty much all the time and also changed how often I use the comp.
    Philly Watts likes this.
  19. smogg


    Mar 27, 2007
    NPR, Florida
    I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell
    I don't use an always on pedal per say. But, what few pedals I do have get used regularly.
    12-24-17 FX Board.jpg
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  20. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    Westchester, NY
    It depends on the band and the songs for me. Every gig I use, Octave, Compression, Dirt, and some sort of EQ.

    On my board I've got two compressors. One for vintage style tones and one for slapping.

    I've got a Beta DLX for my dirt so I effectively have three different dirt sounds and use all of them.

    Octave gives me, well, octave sounds.

    I use EQ to get me a dubby reggae tone.

    I've got one of the bigger effects collection here, over 130 pedals last count. I've limited my gigging board to 8-10 pedals though. Bringing a massive board to gigs isn't practical for me, there just isn't enough space to fit it.
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