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Noisy signal chain - any general good advice?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by BassyBill, May 10, 2006.


  1. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Thread title says it all, really. My bass and amp are generally pretty quiet in operation, but when I use my pedal board the hiss starts to creep up. I know this is unavoidable really, but any suggestion for keeping it to a minimum would be welcome. I've tried rolling off the highs a bit and playing around with relative gain settings, but the hiss is still more than I'd like, although playing live it's not a major problem.

    Signal chain is bass > digitech bsw > mxr bass auto q > sansamp pbddi > boss ceb3 > amp. All the effects are powered through the adaptor for my Boss pedalboard, but it's hiss that's the problem rather than hum, so using batteries makes little difference.
     
  2. Nyarlathotep

    Nyarlathotep Banned

    Feb 5, 2006
    West Coast of Canada
    get a Boss NS-2 and put the BSW, the Auto Q, and the PBDDI in the loop!
     
  3. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    while im here,

    my effects chain is kinda noisy and my amp has an effects loop so what stuff should i put in it?

    my chain is:

    Bass-> Boss TU-2-> Dunlop 105Q-> Boss LMB-3-> Boss ODB-3-> MXR M-80-> Hartke Bass Attack-> Boss GEB-7-> Amp
     
  4. Nyarlathotep

    Nyarlathotep Banned

    Feb 5, 2006
    West Coast of Canada
    Put an NS-2 around all but the bass and amp! :D
     
  5. anyonefortennis

    anyonefortennis Supporting Member

    Jun 28, 2005
    Lincoln, NE
    NS-2 is so so. If you really want a noise gate, the ISP Decimator is the way to go. That said, you have to find the source of the problem before getting a noise gate. They will always affect your tone in a way you don't want to.

    What you fail to mention is whether the hiss is present with pedals on or bypassed. Not much you can do about it when pedals are on besides a noise gate or finiding a higer qaulity replacement.

    using batteries (at least for the test) add one pedal at the time to the signal until you find the black sheep that's resposible for the noise and then deal with that pedal approprately.

    Also make sure you use quality patch cables (george L's, lava, long johnny cables from effectsconnection.com ).

    A quieter power supply would defently help. Make sure it has isolated outputs such as the Voodoo labs PP2 or Buerkey Flatliner. (Not the dunlop brick).

    Also getting an A/B box (loooper.com, loop-master.com) to get the tuner out of the main signal chain will help. Getting stuff out of the way of your signal path that is not necessary will always reduce the noise.
     
  6. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    so is it better to buy a noise suppressor rather than using my amps effects loop?

    an there is subtle hissing when my pedals are bypassed and when i put all of em in the effects loop the volume dropped dramatically. how do i fix the volume drop?
     
  7. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    bump
     
  8. I don't recommend the Boss NS-2. For me, it killed a lot of my sustain, plus I could hear the envelope opening and closing with it. So I got a loooper and bypassed all my noisy effects. It's worked really well thus far.
     
  9. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    would a boss LS-2 do the trick or is that not a looper?
     
  10. It is a looper, just not true bypass, but with the high quality Boss buffer I don't think it's a problem. This will allow you to bypass your effects when they're not in use, which may satisfy your needs. If it's just inbetween songs that it bugs you, then a noise gate will do the trick.

    Again, finding the cause is key to success. None of those effects you mention strike me as being likely culprits, they're all of high quality. Some hiss is inevitable and is usually not a problem until you hit the studio. Ask yourself, is it something you can live with or are you dying to do something about it?
     
  11. BassIsFun17

    BassIsFun17 Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2006
    Atlanta
    i mean it only starts hissing when i kick in the distortion,

    i guess its more hum than hiss though.
     
  12. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Thanks for the responses so far, people, some good ideas here for me to pursue. I'll definitely try to think about the cables (I'm using the ones Boss supllied at the moment) and the power supply, also the loooper option was one I've thought about. Guess I've got some investigating to do. The hiss is noticeable (to me) even when all effects are off, but as I said it's not that big a problem when playing live.
     
  13. srxplayer

    srxplayer

    May 19, 2004
    Highland, CA
    I use a Boss NS-2 and it works good.

    My chain runs through the effects loop.

    NS-2->TU-2->Sansamp BDDI->CEB-3->ODB-3.

    I also use SJB II single coils in my Jazz bass so there is a lot of noise in the chain if I solo the bridge pick up or when I use the ODB-3 Distortion pedal.

    The NS-2 keeps everything pretty quiet.
     

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