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narrowing down my choice of ring mod/quasi-bit crusher/general weirdness pedal

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by coldfoot_luke, Nov 3, 2010.

  1. coldfoot_luke


    Jul 4, 2010
    I've been looking for a weird and noisy pedal I can use in a musical setting, for unsettling tone rather than pure noise, something that would sound good in a industrial/gritty hip hop setting. After tons of forum searching and watching youtube demo vedeos, I've narrowed it down to three pedals, and now I want to turn to the combined wisdom of the TB community on:

    Catalinbread heliotrope -

    Red Panda Bitcrusher -

    Copilot Antenna 2.

    Anyone want to pitch in on the pros and cons of them? Any unfriendliness towards active basses? Any love or hate stories? Thanks TB nation.
  2. The Heliotrope sounds awesome in all the clips I have heard from it, but I can't really speak about any of those with any personal experience.

    Have you looked at the EHX Ring Thing? It will do weird crazy noise, but it also makes some really useful sounds as well.

    I may be looking to move mine, by the way... :bag:
  3. jrmy


    Dec 19, 2009
    Rhode Island
    Not to complicate your decision, but the Copilot Orbit is also an awesome crazy-nutso musical noise machine. I did a quick & dirty recording, playing around with the Frequency, Mix & Expression knobs between riffs.


    BigChiefBC also put a great, much more educational demo up at YouTube (playing on an active 5-string, no less):
  4. GrowlerBox


    Feb 10, 2010
    Nude Zealand
    I use an EHX Flanger Hoax for tripped-out sound-effecty stuff. Goes from musically useable flanger to beeps, crackles and pops. Almost no point doing sound clips due to the enormous range of sounds, but there are plenty around the interwebs. Worth a look, and cheaper than most decent ring mod pedals.
  5. spufman


    Feb 7, 2005
    Central CT
    I recently got a Heliotrope (off TB) and I think it's great. It's quite capable of producing (to me) useless sounds, but it's equally capable of far out but very musical synthy sounds that are just what I was hoping to find. Things get even more flexible when I put my Flanger after it. The Youtube bass clip is what got my interest and I've found that video to accurately reflect the range of sounds I've been getting.
  6. JohnDavisNYC


    Jan 11, 2008
    Brooklyn, NY
    Endorsing Artist: Aguilar, D'Addario
    the red panda thing looks awesome, but no experience with it... my studio partner has the Heliotrope, and it's awesome.

    i rock the BugCrusher Micro... but that thing is kinda hard to find.

  7. The Lurker

    The Lurker

    Aug 16, 2002
    The only one of those I've tried is the Heliotrope, but I like it very much.

    Except for the welding-torch-bright blue LED, that is....
  8. tomhanzo


    Apr 20, 2008
    West Virginia
    Have you heard of the Boss PS-3. I had one and it had some sweet stuff. You get delay, octaves up and down, chorus, and even a strange step whammy.

    Mod 7 will amaze you.
  9. The Lurker

    The Lurker

    Aug 16, 2002
    I also learned recently that if you run the Heliotrope with an 18volt power supply, it sounds even better.:bassist:
  10. spufman


    Feb 7, 2005
    Central CT
    I'll have to try 18v into my Heliotrope, forgot that was supposed to give it even more. Also just to add, that pedal maintains a really nice bottom end, not lacking for lows at all.
  11. bleh, i sold my ps-3 a week after I get it. probably one of the most overrated pedal.
  12. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    I dig the Heliotrope and got good use out of mine when I had it. It's basically a less severe ring mod (only subtractive not additive and subtractive) with a fuzz knob. To my ear what it does doesn't sound much like bitcrushing at all (even "pseudo" bitcrushing) but it has a very cool sound of its own.

    It's also great when using with a filter, be it normal envelope filter or expression controlled low pass like the Moog or Iron Ether Xerograph.

    The Antenna was too lo-fi for me but might work for you.

    I've liked the clips of the Red Panda but haven't tried one myself. Have you looked into the WMD Geiger Counter (normal or civilian issue)? Bill at WMD will mod them for bass for you if you ask. True bit crushing sounds.

    Personally, my ring mod needs are met by the Fairfield Randy's Revenge which I like a lot but all of the pedals listed are cool in their own way.
  13. The Lurker

    The Lurker

    Aug 16, 2002
    How did you find it before or after the filter? Was either distinctly more to your liking?
  14. spufman


    Feb 7, 2005
    Central CT
    I definitely like it after the filter. The only thing I like before my filter is my OD. Also, Flanger>Heliotrope is not so hot but Heliotrope>Flanger is great. This is all personal taste stuff, of course. For reference my board setup is: [MAIN BOARD] Hematoma>Groove Regulator>Fazeadelic. I then (sometimes) add on my [SYNTHY BOARD] which is Heliotrope>Maxon FL-01>SlowVolume. I like the modular setup, I don't always want them all along.
  15. coldfoot_luke


    Jul 4, 2010
    Thanks for the feedback everyone- I think I'm going to try the heliotrope first... but they all look so tempting, this might be a long period of gas for me... noise here we come! :bassist:

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