How Many ODs/Dirts?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Being and Bass, Jan 18, 2018.

  1. Being and Bass

    Being and Bass

    Apr 9, 2017
    I think it is safe to assume that if you have any kind of pedalboard you have an OD or dirt pedal on it. We have all seen the "tuner and a DS-1" board that has served musicians well forever.

    But when looking at my board I noticed that I have 4 distinct dirt pedals (one of them is also a dual-OD) on my board at a time, and I have plans for two more to complete my tonal variety. This seems like a lot, but for different passages you really do need different tones and I use them all to noticeable effect. But 6 OD/dirt/fuzz pedals (technically 7) seems like waaaaaaay too many. Anyone else have these same concerns about their board? Especially when paired against my time-based effects, it seems like a lot of pedal space absorbed by different versions of one effect.
    theunknowndude and spaz21387 like this.
  2. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    The answer is, "however many you need". If you want 7, and you don't mind having 7 on your board, then go for it. Some have more!

    I totally understand wanting to use a lot of dirt pedals. I love variety, and own at least a dozen dirt pedals that I like -- but I don't set them all up at the gig, obviously. Fact is, I don't have a board because I love to change up my pedals from gig to gig: partly because I play in a few bands (f'r instance I'll use a more edgy/aggressive tone with my harder rock band than I will with my classic rock/R&B band), but mostly because I love change things up for variety's sake, even within the same band/genre. So, I only bring 2-3 dirts to each gig (I don't use any other FX, aside from compression every so often).

    In a perfect world I'd have a dozen (or more) dirt pedals on a board so I could get all the variety I want at every gig... but I rarely play stages big enough for that kind of board. If you can do 6 or 7, then why not? I totally get it.
    rtav, Nunovsky, MDBass and 1 other person like this.
  3. CRich0205


    Feb 17, 2013
    1 OD and 2 fuzz pedals for me. My idea of clean is a slightly dirty svt too. So it’s like 3 1/2
  4. _Some Dude

    _Some Dude

    Sep 14, 2016
    I have two and will probably add a third.

    The first is to produce a clean/dirty blend and the second is a full on exploding speaker fuzz.

    The one I want to add will be somewhere in the middle.
  5. Jakeman

    Jakeman Swamp Thing

    Jun 26, 2006
    New Orleans, LA
    Whatever serves the song.
    I've got 8 on my board and have zero shame!

    Each one has it's justification:
    Darkglass VMT -> B3K: My always-on sound.
    Team Awesome Fuzz Machine: low-gain fuzz for grittier parts that don't need full blown fuzz
    3Leaf You're Doom: Used solely in combination with octaves and filters to add some grind
    EHX Green Muff Reissue: 'cause I gotta have a muff on there. For in-the-background wall of muff-fuzz
    IE Oxide: Used along with a Polytope and reverb for my solo spot
    Darkglass Duality: For full-blown, sharper fuzz parts
    Prunes & Custard: It fits one particular verse in one song in my band, but that one sound is essential
    armybass, Fuzzbass and Being and Bass like this.
  6. I have 5..... MBD-1 is a beast

    Nunovsky, HolmeBass, wildman2 and 4 others like this.
  7. DDXdesign

    DDXdesign formerly 'jammadave' Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 15, 2003
    I keep adding and taking away fuzz. I love playing with it, but I have never really needed it in a band context. I will likely just keep adding and removing as time goes on.... =0) I will always have at least one dirty option on board though, I think.
    dbsfgyd1, theunknowndude and Jakeman like this.
  8. Turtle71

    Turtle71 Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2009
    Madison, WI
    I currently have 2, I'm adding a 3rd (maybe 4th), but I could realistically find uses for several more after that...I'd run out of board, before I ran out of OD's I'd like to have.
  9. Here's my list;

    Ampeg SCR-DI- I use the Scrambler as a sort of SVT pushed to the edge tone- a bit of grit without getting too messed up.
    Tronographic Rusty Box- never really a clean pedal to begin with, and the boost puts things over the edge quite well.
    RAT2- had an original one years ago. Wife Christmas gift! A good distort-box.
    Earthtone Big Muff Pi- custom built Russian-style Muff built by my guitarist for me. All goodness. Bass Guitar Driver (aka "the bass driver")

    The Trono and Ampeg are essentially my channel switchable "preamp", while the other get used as needed.
    Being and Bass likes this.
  10. My dream board would have 7 or 8 dirt pedals but my basic getting the job done board has one overdrive (Hjart Muller Lo|Fat) and a Sweeper that has a switchable fuzz, but I really miss the variety of having multiple colors.
  11. Honestly I'm usually good with just my Blower Box, though sometimes I'll add the Russian Big Muff to my board for a very different flavor of dirt.

    I totally get having an OD, fuzz, and distortion on your board, or multiple fuzzes if they're all very different sounds. Don't really get the reason for having more than one big muff or rat clone on a single board though.
    Jakeman and pkw13 like this.
  12. bass40hz

    bass40hz Cigar smoker, scotch drinker, American Patriot

    Aug 13, 2014
    Sussex County, NJ
    Source Audio AfterShock can provide 6 different OD/Fuzz/Distortion options in one pedal...there is a 3 position toggle with 3 factory presets and there is a user preset mode for 3 more, also can handle an external switch...this pedal is insane, you can tweak it any way you want using the free app...I've used B3K, Pickle Pie B, Boneshaker, Mantic, etc, etc, etc...the SA AS is king of the heap IMHO. 1 pedal *may* replace 6, of course this depends on you and your needs.
    I do push a SansAmp sometimes and when I do the results are extraordinary.
    LowActionHero and FullTime Tim like this.
  13. Fuzzonaut


    Aug 27, 2013
    Nothing to worry about!

    Currently on my board: 14 pedals - or actually 16 as the COG Custom contains a T-65, a Knightfall and a Grand Tarkin.
    So that's: 9 dirt pedals / 7 other pedals. Suits me just fine.

  14. Sunset Shalom

    Sunset Shalom

    May 9, 2016
    My messy "home board" has at least 12 including fuzz and boosts, perhaps a few more if you count pre amp pedals. I tend to just use a few at a time but it's nice having tons of options. Definitely excessive though.

    If I were gigging I would probably cut that number down to 3-5 or so of the ones I use the most. I buy most of my gear used so I don't feel too bad about my excessive collection. Been meaning to sell of a few as well.
  15. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    I played bass for around 35 years before I bought my first OD pedal. I just ordered a second OD this week. But I’ve got five compressors and four preamp pedals - and counting. I have no envelope/wah or fuzz pedals. And I don’t plan on getting any.

    I think how many of a certain type of device you own comes down to what you like and are most interested in exploring rather than for reasons based on an actual need.
  16. Bassman474


    Sep 1, 2010
    I have 4 right now on my stoner/doom board to cover all my needs. Each one is very different.

    TC Mojomojo
    DOD 250
    EHX Green Russian Muff Reissue
    Devi Ever Ruiner
  17. BassAndReeds


    Oct 7, 2016
    I think it depends on the type of music you play. If you play Top 40 and Country covers like myself, you probably don't even need an OD/Dist/Fuzz. But if you play in a Post-Metal (including all sub genres that I don't even know exist) band, then 7 is probably just right. Every songs having a distorted bass, and you don't want the same color in every song.
  18. non


    Aug 4, 2015
    what does the suck/blow pedal do? or should i ask.:D
  19. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    Westchester, NY
    Use as many as you want! I had a board that was all dirt pedals.
    gregmon79 likes this.
  20. flam


    Sep 20, 2010
    Tempe, Arizona
    I only use two. One to kick up the gain on my amp (it runs overdriven normally) which is a custom rat clone, and the fuzz built into the cliff Burton wah, which kinda sounds bad, but in a good way. I only really use it with the wah for a solo or two

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