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Overdrive, Not Distortion pedals

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Sayclean, Jan 16, 2021.

  1. Sayclean


    Jul 26, 2009
    Nashville, TN
    Ok, Bass geeks,
    I’ve been playing a long time prof, and semi-pro. I have probably 200 pedals. I’m interested in knowing your thoughts on Overdrive pedals NOT Distortion pedals. I don’t like the sound of distortion pedals. SO, what’s your favorite “ Overdrive “ pedal for Bass?
    OpposableThumbs and WillyWonka like this.
  2. NoiseNinja

    NoiseNinja Experimental-psychedelic-ambient-noise-drone

    Feb 23, 2011
    No doubt my Joyo Orange Juice, which is basically a seriously sized down clone of the now discontinued Tech 21 Oxford preamp/overdrive, that is meant to emulate an Orange type amp, with simplified controls, which I currently use set to a light overdrive mixed with cleans via my Boss LS-2 as an always on thing.

    Love what it does for my tone, and it is great at higher gain settings as well, can go all the way from clean up to medium gain distortion, and everything in between, but works exceptionally well as either a low gain, relatively pick sensitive and somewhat tube like, overdrive, to add a bit of tube like grit and Orange amp style edge to your tone, as I use it currently, or as a somewhat grinding and quite clanky type of medium to high gain overdrive.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2021
    BillMason and Pulverizor like this.
  3. Evil_Druid


    May 9, 2016
    San Diego
    Broughton SV-Pre is a really convincing SVT simulator
    Danelectro Breakdown is surprising for what it is tbh
    I like the Fuzzrocious Dark Driving a lot but it’s got a fuzzy tinge to it
    FWIW my favorite ‘overdrives’ usually fall within the dirty boost category.
  4. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Favorites of this day are Wampler Pantheon and Friedman Motor City. Confession, I don’t care if it says Bass on the box. Most of my favorite pedals are guitar pedals that work on bass.
    Wampler’s Brad Paisley OD is great if you don’t get spooked by it saying Brad Paisley.
  5. GMC

    GMC Supporting Member

    Just to clarify, Overdrive is a type of distortion. I have a number of overdrive favs, but it really depends on what I'm looking to achieve. Some OD's, it's trying to emulate the sound of a specific valve amp "hitting the rails". These are more of an analogue amp sim. The Catalinbread SFT is a great example of this. The Joyo American Sound is another great example. Then there's pedals like the Fairfield Circuitry Barbershop, which is a very transparent, but amp like overdrive sound. It doesn't mimic any specific amp, it just introduces a nice light overdrive. As over drives go, my goto is the "tube overdrive" model on my Source Audio Aftershock. It's the most transparent, clearest and touch sensitive OD that I've yet tried. The DAM Ezekiel Bass fuzz, is a bass orientated over drive based fuzz. It's capable of quite light settings although it's nature is more on the heavier side of Fuzz.
  6. WillyWonka

    WillyWonka "zero" fret Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2019
    I went through many, many OD pedals, and I do not own a single distortion pedal.

    My favorite has been the standard EHX Soul Food, (didn’t like the bass version)

    My favorite now is the Wilson Effects Sparkling Blue. For 3 times the price of the Soul Food.
  7. dedpool1052


    Jan 10, 2011
    Seattle, WA
    Now, I've read this sentiment multiple times WRT the SF/BSF.

    Could you elaborate on why you felt the guitar version stood out compared to the bass version?
    WillyWonka likes this.
  8. WillyWonka

    WillyWonka "zero" fret Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2019
    the bass version add a blend wet/dry knob, I don’t think it contributes. And it’s supposed to do something different with the frequencies it boosts, but it didn’t sound as good to me.
    dedpool1052 likes this.
  9. dedpool1052


    Jan 10, 2011
    Seattle, WA
    IIRC, the SF is based on the old Klon Centaur.
    Would you say the regular is more transparent, than adding the blend?
  10. Tritone

    Tritone Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2002
    Santee, America
    I've come to the conclusion that a couple types of effects sound better to me when blended. I run my drives (and flangers) through Xotic X-Blenders. My favorite combo at the moment is a blended Matthews Engineer. I EQ the Engineer itself with the mids pushed and the treble rolled back. You can also EQ the effected sound on the X-Blender itself. When combined with my clean (active) sound, the OD slots nicely, and I avoid the high frequency "Fizz" sound. I also use a Earthquaker Westwood overdrive (blended). For a stand-alone pedal, I've had pretty good luck with the Broughton Terraformer.
    tiny_bass and Kendescending like this.
  11. SLPimp

    SLPimp An Injury to One is an Injury to All Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2020
    Santa Fe, New Mexico
    TC Spark. Does everything from clean boost to OD. And it's cheap.
  12. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    Nightowl Edison.
    crapusername and Jesuguru like this.
  13. The Fulltone Fat Boost does a nice more-better type tone for me with some added thickness/hint of drive when I dig in. Works well always on.
    I also use a Big Muff clone with the tone turned down clone for more agressive tones, riding the volume on it is a nice trick for variation.
    A few years ago I got the Xvive Bass Squeezer mini pedal on a whim. The comp is OK at lower settings and I was very pleasantly surprised by the built-in overdrive...it adds a nice grunt without getting harsh or coarse, even at medium settings the clipping is nice and soft...cheap but good.
  14. 808State


    Dec 30, 2020
    Im not sure exactly what is the meaning of overdrive versus distortion.

    Overdrive would be just a clean boost with enough gain to "overdrive" the amp.
    Being only so much overhead from a 9 volt source, it is possibly to have slight distortion from a boost pedal.
    otherwise overdrive or distortion is same thing. A "good" overdrive would be if your amp actually sounds good getting driven into distortion.
    obimark likes this.
  15. +1
    And I would add the TC dark matter. Supposed to be high gain distortion, but does light gain overdrive and can be picked up under $40
    EQD Westwood is great too.
    Zbysek likes this.
  16. Killens84

    Killens84 Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    I’ve tried many, and this is the best I’ve found.
  17. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    This is my current low gain devise.

    bassjam, HolmeBass and lesclaypoolsob like this.
  18. My all time favourites are

    Way Huge Pork Loin
    Tech 21 VTDI
    Fuzzrocious Dark Driving
    bassjam, rratajski and Zooberwerx like this.
  19. krfoss

    krfoss Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    I've been using a timmy lately. I like it.
    Nick von Nick likes this.
  20. 808State


    Dec 30, 2020
    Yeah when you say overdrive it means nothing really.
    Are we talking light distortion or heavy distortion.

    Eventually you find six million distortion / overdrive pedal copies and nobody really knows what topology is really being used.

    Youll find a million big muff copies, or either a diode clipper with some sort of EQ glued after it. Or just a pedal that pushes the actual opamp in distortion. No diodes. Or something that pushes transistors or fets into distortion. no diodes.

    If your finding out of the 200 pedals you own, none of them have good distortion, or the annoying weird fizzle that floats above the sound. Is the only way i can describe it. Ive been playing for years too and can make use of of any distortion. But come to found anything with a diode clipper is what was making the fake weird floating on the top sound.

    Filters is what really makes a distortion or overdrive work, but even some that i found with good filters or EQ still had the weird fake sounding grind to it.

    I dont know which pedals now use the circuit, but basically something that just overdrives the opamp, no diodes.
    and likewise will usually be something that has a good amount of highpass, that cleans it up. Then you get the classic " bass drop" then it needs a basic EQ in the pedal or just use a EQ pedal to boost back lows.

    Actually a original Marshall Guv Nor works very well, And if the EQ doesnt boost back the bass enough, use a EQ pedal to boost back the lowend. Sure there is copies or OD pedals out their using the concept. Dont need no BS gimics on " emulating" some amp. Guvnor was a opamp getting pused hard with everday marshall/fender style tone control after. Not one for gimics and marketing. Just know what works and doesnt work

    obimark likes this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Mar 3, 2021

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