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Overdrive/Distortion with Blend, other choices?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Gearhead17, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Mount Prospect, IL
    I recently tried out an Ibanez Tube Screamer for bass. I liked the blend feature and realized I need the blend feature to keep the low end, midrange and detail when using overdrive/distortion. However, the pedal was very warm sounding and I had the treble all the way cranked to get something usable in the "edgy/growly" category. The pedal was also a little too buzzy for my tastes.

    I have tried some other pedals, but realized that the idea of blending is crucial for my tone desires.

    When I say overdrive/distortion - I mean a pedal that can do overdrive really well, but when you max out the pedal, you can achieve a decent amount of thick distortion. I am not looking for fuzz.

    I am looking for more overdrive/distortion pedals that have a blend knob/circuit built into the pedal so I can control everything from one pedal. I am not looking to buy a separate blend pedal and would like to keep it really simple for live use. The Darkglass B3K comes to mind, but it is currently on back order everywhere until July 29th. Is that pedal really worth it? Youtube videos have made me excited about it one minute and confused the next... Are there other choices I have ignored?

    Stuff I have tried: Exotic BB Preamp, Tech 21 (everything), Mad Prof. Blueberry Bass OD, Dredge Tone Angler, Aguilar AGRO, and several others.....
  2. DeltaPhoenix

    DeltaPhoenix Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2011
    B3K is worth it for me. It is so easy to find the sound that I want. I have never had a pedal that just sits exactly where I want it to in the mix. What is weird to me is that if I am playing by myself it sounds just a bit to trebly to me, but when my band is playing, those high-mids sound really good. I still try out other pedals from time to time and the B3K sends them packing. The B3K really just seems to fit the criteria of what you are asking for.
  3. tigerbass


    Jul 28, 2006
    Crown Point, IN
    Have you tried the Iron Ether QF2? Sounds like what you're after to me.
  4. Epitaph04

    Epitaph04 Always overcompensating Supporting Member

    Jul 5, 2010
  5. Gringo Starr

    Gringo Starr

    Apr 21, 2012
    wow, I just checked out the demo video on the Darkglass website for the B3K. Blew me away. This is exactly the type of o.d./dist pedal I have been looking for. Wish I hadn't wasted my money on the pedals that I already own.
  6. scHism


    Aug 12, 2009
    B3K! ;)
  7. DeltaPhoenix

    DeltaPhoenix Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2011
    I liked the QF2, I just don't think it does OD well, Distortion yes though.
  8. I'd probably just get a flanger or a phaser, really.:cool:
  9. mistermark311


    Sep 29, 2007
    The Source Audio Multiwave Distortion, FEA Labs Dual Band Distortion and the AMT BC-1 all have great sounding distortions with the ability to blend back in the dry signal or parts of the dry signal.

  10. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Mount Prospect, IL
    The videos on youtube of the B3K all sound a little weird to me - very trebly. However, if you say it works, then I need to keep my eyes out for one.

    Do you by chance use an active bass with the B3K? In several B3K videos, people are using an active bass and the unit sounds consistently good when compared to the passives. Unlike so many pedals out there that do not like my Spector Euro 5LX with EMG DC 40's.

    I should add that I will be using the overdrive pedal just for some edgy attack while using a pick. I am in a cover band, so getting a cutting pick tone is quite helpful with a loudish drummer and two guitar players.
  11. Getting a cutting pick tone seems to be what this pedal does the best at. The only one that has a comparable attack is the Rusty Box, imo.

    I play mine into a Tech21 Oxford, and I get good pick attack even with my 4 year old Lo-Riders. It can be very grindy, or just a slight "edge" on a thick warm tone.
    If you like I can send you some clips.
  12. mmbongo

    mmbongo Five Time World Champion Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Way Huge Pork Loin, but it might not have enough gain for you.
  13. DeltaPhoenix

    DeltaPhoenix Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2011
    I use an Ernie Ball Big Al 4 SSS. I use it active and passive. It has a pretty hot signal, it is an 18v preamp. The B3K can handle it fine. The only thing you have to do with a real hot signal is turn the blend down, it is crazy how much of a difference it makes, a little goes a long way.
    I play fingerstyle but I do use my fingernails when I need a pick attack, it sounds really good.
  14. scHism


    Aug 12, 2009
    The treble may sound a little too much when hearing it by itself, but with a band, a metal band at that, it sounded surprisingly good. I use an ATK btw, that may be the reason why the Hematoma was so much overpowering since it is already getting a hot signal, can't dial down the distortion even at minimum. B3K is awesome with actives.
  15. pmchenry


    May 6, 2012
    SE PA
    I actually prefer the Way Huge Green Rhino because it's got a little more drive. Very adjustable tone too. Less mellow than the Pork Loin, but it sounds like that's what the OP is after.
  16. What scHism said is really the key. I find people complain of the B3K saying the highs sound a bit unnatural, but really they aren't once a heavy midrangey distorted guitar comes in. The B3K will be heard without interfering with them.

    I find darker pedals that sound "sweet" by themselves to go bye bye in a mix. A fully wet-blended BDDI comes to mind.
  17. ysand


    Mar 26, 2005
    I use my B7K (which is in fact B3K with EQ and DI) with a Spector Rebop 5 DLX with EMG DC and TW and tonepump without trimpot (which is supposed to be a super hot pre!). No problems whatsoever, on the contrary the results are amazing!
  18. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    Maybe the holy fire?
    The 'Silverstone ' by musiciansounddesign is fantastic also and by a very large margin the best one I have heard in person.
    Here a link:
    gregoire1 likes this.
  19. 4StringsEnough


    Mar 9, 2008
    Tge Darkglass is the only bass overdrive pedal I've ever been completely happy with (and I've tried enough of them!). I don't know which part of the world you're in but hey're showing in stock at www.effectpowersupplies.com.
  20. Epitaph04

    Epitaph04 Always overcompensating Supporting Member

    Jul 5, 2010
    I'm sure there's still a couple of Finnish B3Ks out there. What's happening is that now they are going to be made in the US (By Spencer, from 3leaf Audio) and those won't be showing up until the end of the month. If you really want a B3K either move into the effects classifieds or look around for any dealers near you to see if they have any of the Finnish B3Ks left.

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